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Preseason No. 1 KU back to top of poll

(AP Photo/Orlin Wagner)

Kansas is back where it started the season.

The preseason No. 1, the Jayhawks are again the top-ranked in The Associated Press Top 25 despite struggling to get past New Mexico State at home. Kansas received 57 first-place votes from a 65-person media panel in the poll released Monday, sliding into the top spot after previous No. 1 Gonzaga lost to Tennessee.

No. 2 Duke moved up a spot and received four first-place votes. No. 3 Tennessee, No. 4 Gonzaga, No. 5 Michigan and No. 6 Virginia received the other first-place votes.


Schofield lifts No. 7 Vols by No. 1 Zags

PHOENIX (AP) Tennessee lost the reigning SEC player of the year down the stretch against the nation's top-ranked team.

The Vols still had the Admiral to lead them.


Texas edges Purdue despite Edwards' 40

AUSTIN, Texas (AP) Purdue's Carsen Edwards was pouring in points with shot after shot. Somebody had to match him if Texas was going to find a way to end a frustrating early-season losing streak.

Matt Coleman III delivered for the Longhorns, landing just enough late counterpunches to send the Longhorns to a 72-68 victory Sunday that snapped a three-game skid.


Guy, Jerome lead No. 4 Virginia over VCU

CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va. (AP) Virginia Commonwealth gave Virginia the test the Cavaliers sought when they put the Rams on their nonconference schedule. Down the stretch, Virginia passed.

The Cavaliers outscored VCU 19-6 over the final 6:30, a span that saw the Rams whistled for six fouls, as the home team pulled away late for a 57-49 victory Sunday.


No. 6 Nevada fends off Grand Canyon

PHOENIX (AP) Nevada had a short turnaround against a scrappy team with a loud fan base, even in what was technically a neutral-site game. The Wolf Pack stumbled out of the gate, had a hard time finding enough of an offensive rhythm to pull away.

Relying on grit and experience, Nevada pulled out a game when it wasn't at its best - a sure sign of a team that could make plenty of noise in March.


No. 15 Va. Tech rolls after cold start

BLACKSBURG, Va. (AP) Perhaps it was the snow, or the small crowd in attendance, or semester-ending exams - or maybe a combination of all three - that caused Virginia Tech to get off to a slow start against South Carolina State.

Everyone, that is, except for Nickeil Alexander-Walker.


Lewis helps Alabama hold off Arizona

TUSCALOOSA, Ala. (AP) Kira Lewis Jr. and Alabama made sure this one didn't slip away.

The freshman made a 3-pointer and two free throws over the final 13 seconds and the Crimson Tide held on for a 76-73 victory over Arizona on Sunday.


Ponds scores 26, St. John's goes to 9-0

NEW YORK (AP) Shomorie Ponds scored 18 of his 26 points in the second half and combined with Justin Simon for nine points in a game-ending run as undefeated St. John's fended off Princeton 89-74 on Sunday at the Madison Square Garden Holiday Festival.

Princeton trailed by 19, 75-66, with eight minutes left after Ponds scored 10 points in a 26-8 run. But the Tigers responded by outscoring the Red Storm 18-5, capped by a 3-pointer by Jose Morales, and closed within six with 3:41 remaining but didn't score again, missing their final six shots.


MSG to host Big East tourney through '28

NEW YORK (AP) The Big East Conference has extended its agreement with Madison Square Garden to hold its postseason tournament at the venue through 2028.

The deal announced Sunday extends the current partnership by two years and ensures the Big East Tournament will be played at Madison Square Garden in the week leading up to Selection Sunday.


Haliburton has 17 assists, Cyclones roll

AMES, Iowa (AP) Freshman Tyrese Haliburton has been a fixture in Iowa State's lineup all season, quietly filling up the stat sheet while his high-scoring teammates grabbed the spotlight.

There wasn't anything quiet about what Haliburton did on a record-setting Sunday night.

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