Luke DeCock

Luke DeCock’s AP Top 25 basketball poll ballot: Week 10

Zion Williamson dunk drives Cameron Indoor Stadium fans crazy

Zion Williamson steals the ball from Clemson and does a 360 degree dunk as the Tigers trail the play
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Zion Williamson steals the ball from Clemson and does a 360 degree dunk as the Tigers trail the play

Iowa State rockets into the poll at 18 after a good win over Kansas, but the Cyclones have been a sort-of top-30 team all year even if they only actually cracked my ballot in Week 3, so they didn’t exactly come from out of nowhere. Kansas falls to 7, still very much part of the top tier of really good teams. Nevada, however, falls out out of that group.

Florida State takes a relatively precipitous fall for a road loss to the No. 3 team in my poll, but I think I had been overrating the Seminoles a hair by inertia as much as anything and the loss is an opportunity for a reevaluation and correction. Their new position of 17 is the right neighborhood.

St. John’s is the other new team, Kentucky and Nebraska exit, Marquette stays in by a hair. Also under consideration: Maryland, Purdue, Seton Hall and Texas, both of the regular and North varieties.

THIS SEASON’S BALLOTS

Week 1 (Preseason) Week 2 Week 3 Week 4 Week 5 Week 6 Week 7 Week 8 Week 9

MY TOP 25

1. Duke (Last week: 1)

2. Michigan (2)

3. Virginia (4)

4. Tennessee (6)

5. Michigan State (7)

6. Gonzaga (8)

7. Kansas (5)

8. Virginia Tech (10)

9. Auburn (11)

10. Texas Tech (12)

11. Nevada (3)

12. Mississippi State (13)

13. N.C. State (17)

14. Buffalo (18)

15. North Carolina (19)

16. Oklahoma (15)

17. Florida State (9)

18. Iowa State (NR)

19. Ohio State (14)

20. Houston (23)

21. TCU (25)

22. Wisconsin (20)

23. Indiana (21)

24. St. John’s (NR)

25. Marquette (16)

OUT Kentucky (22), Nebraska (24).

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Sports columnist Luke DeCock has covered the Summer Olympics, the Final Four, the Super Bowl and the Carolina Hurricanes’ Stanley Cup. He joined The News & Observer in 2000 to cover the Hurricanes and the NHL before becoming a columnist in 2008. A native of Evanston, Ill., he graduated from the University of Pennsylvania and has won multiple national and state awards for his columns and feature writing while twice being named North Carolina Sportswriter of the Year.

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