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Jayhawks fall out of AP Top 25 for first time since 2009

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Kansas forward Mitch Lightfoot (44) and Kansas guard Dajuan Harris (3) have a chat while waiting to check in during the second half on Thursday, Jan. 28, 2021 at Allen Fieldhouse.

Kansas forward Mitch Lightfoot (44) and Kansas guard Dajuan Harris (3) have a chat while waiting to check in during the second half on Thursday, Jan. 28, 2021 at Allen Fieldhouse. by Nick Krug

The Kansas men’s basketball team took another tumble in the Associated Press Top 25 this week, falling 10 spots to No. 33 and falling out of the Top 25 for the first time in 232 weeks.

The Jayhawks (12-7 overall, 6-5 Big 12) received 18 votes in this week’s poll, missing out on the 25th and final spot occupied by Rutgers by 47 votes.

The last time the Jayhawks were not ranked came in late January of 2009.

Since then, KU had remained in the poll — often in the top 10 — for an NCAA record 231 consecutive weeks.

That mark, which snapped UCLA’s record of 221 consecutive weeks ranked earlier this season, underlined the consistent and sustained excellence KU has experienced under head coach Bill Self, who now is in his 18th season in charge of the program.

“It’s a great deal,” Kansas coach Bill Self said of the record streak. “It’s sad (it came) to an end. But all we can do is hopefully play well enough to start another one.”

After opening the 2020-21 season at No. 6 in the rankings and hanging in the top five or 10 for most of the first couple of months, KU encountered significant struggles when Big 12 play began.

KU opened the season with an 8-1 record and climbed all the way to No. 3 in the AP poll.

The Jayhawks opened 2021 with a 25-point home loss to Texas and then went on to drop three in a row, at Oklahoma State, at Baylor and at Oklahoma.

That started the tumble. Two more road losses in recent weeks — at Tennessee on Jan. 30 and at West Virginia over the weekend — added to it, and the Jayhawks enter tonight’s game with No. 23 Oklahoma State (8 p.m. on ESPN at Allen Fieldhouse) having lost five of their last seven games.

The only wins for KU since Jan. 9 have come against Kansas State and TCU, both at home.

KU’s absence in this week’s poll merely adds to the list of tradition-rich and blue blood programs that have fallen on hard times this season.

Joining Kansas in the world of the unranked are Duke, North Carolina, Kentucky and Michigan State. In fact, none of the 13 winningest programs in the history of college basketball are ranked in this week’s AP Top 25.

Perhaps even more amazingly is the fact that six of the Big 12’s 10 teams are ranked this week and Kansas is not one of them.

Top-ranked Gonzaga, at 89 straight weeks, now owns the nation's longest active AP Top 25 streak.

Here’s a look at this week’s complete poll:

1 – Gonzaga, 18-0, 1,567 (55)

2 – Baylor, 17-0, 1,520 (8)

3 – Michigan, 13-1, 1,438

4 – Ohio State, 15-4, 1,365

5 – Villanova, 12-2, 1,281

6 – Illinois, 13-5, 1,239

7 – Texas Tech, 14-5, 1,102

8 – Houston, 16-2, 1,060

9 – Virginia, 13-3, 969

10 – Missouri, 13-3, 966

11 – Alabama, 15-5, 911

12 – Oklahoma, 12-5, 863

13 – Texas, 11-5, 841

14 – West Virginia, 824

15 – Iowa, 13-6, 757

16 – Tennessee, 13-4, 690

17 – Florida State, 10-3, 514

18 – Virginia Tech, 14-4, 486

19 – Creighton, 14-5, 465

20 – USC, 15-3, 411

21 – Wisconsin, 14-6, 358

22 – Loyola Chicago, 0-0, 200

23 – Oklahoma State, 12-5, 181

24 – Purdue, 13-7, 85

25 – Rutgers, 11-6, 65

Others receiving votes: Colorado 41, San Diego State 38, Xavier 37, UCLA 35, Florida 29, Louisville 28, Belmont 25, Kansas 18, Drake 16, Minnesota 12, North Carolina 8, St. John's 7, Toledo 6, Clemson 6, Arkansas 3, Boise State 3, Saint Louis 2, UAB 1, Virginia Commonwealth 1, BYU 1

Comments

Adam Bengtson 3 weeks, 1 day ago

Disgraceful.

The players on this roster own it, and you better get something up your ass to change it. Find a different school if not. Flat out embarrassing.

Dirk Medema 3 weeks, 1 day ago

If you’re not setting/extending records, you’re next to worthless.

Obviously, the demise of the blue bloods correlates strongly with attendance this year. Hmmm, is it a causal correlation? As much as AFH is a great home court advantage, our real problems have come on the road where we have been so much more effective in the past.

It would be interesting to see what the SOS looked like through all those weeks we have been ranked. I know it’s not been uncommon for ours to be in the top 10. Currently, there are only 2 programs ranked above us that have a tougher SOS.

It’s also been interesting to watch the polls relative to all the cancellations. Could make for a very upset heavy tournament once ranked teams start having to play others. It will be interesting to see how the ncaa handles positive tests during the tournament. So many programs have shutdown games this year. Can’t have much of a tourney that way.

Dale Rogers 3 weeks, 1 day ago

We are so spoiled. If I'm not mistaken, all but one of our losses have come to ranked teams. And that other one was to the team that was #26 in that they had the most "also received votes."

Yes, we are not playing well and something is not right. But it's not quite like we are losing to the K-States of the world in every game.

Maybe it's time for one of those "team only" get togethers that have worked so well in the past when the team was in a funk.

Buck Bukaty 3 weeks, 1 day ago

Think of your glass as half-full. Start a new streak. Speaking of glass, think of where the sweet-spot is on the bunny glass and cumulatively you'll add at least 10 points a game to the final score. Right now very few appear to have a clue. The likes of the Larry Birds of the sport didn't become legends on tear drops alone or glass chunking. Sweet spots are automatic. Keep grinding, guys!

Tony Bandle 3 weeks, 1 day ago

Random Thoughts:

1] UGH!!!! Missouri in the Top Ten and KU not ranked.....the apocalypse is upon us!!!

2] No KU, UK, Duke, UCLA, UNC, in the TOP 25.........Ike may have been President the last time that happened.

3] Is the next record to go down the 30 year NCAA tourney appearance streak....hope not!!

4] OSU at Allen plus KSU and two games against deplorable ISU should give us 4 more victories, lose to TT, UT and BU, split a win and loss in the tourney, we end up 17 -11 and in the Dance.

Buck Bukaty 3 weeks, 1 day ago

11 losses...........keeping with the glass half-full theme, if I'm not mistaken the 1988 National Champions had 11 losses that season.

Joe Black 3 weeks, 1 day ago

Tonight's game against OSU is not a given. Neither is beating ISU in Ames. They have been playing everyone tough there and we haven't played well on the road and struggle to finish games. You'd better hope we pull off an upset against TT or UT. We have no chance to beat BU. They have way more talent than we do. Texas does also but they have tendency to play down to their opponent (except the last time they played us)

Jeff Coffman 3 weeks, 1 day ago

In what 17 years of coaching at KU, Bill Self this is the second week that he wasn't ranked in the top 25...don't worry the sky isn't falling and Bill Self will get the ship righted.

Brian Mellor 3 weeks, 1 day ago

I suspect that there's a huge amount of pandemic-related fatigue and frustration revolving around playing this season that has really impacted the players. Having to be in the bubble, working in mostly isolation, playing to smaller crowds that you're accustomed to, unable to socialize with your peers. When they stopped winning its easy to see how the players could really get in their own heads and stagnate the way that they have. I can't say I really blame them, I'm sure it has to be hard, and we're very spoiled as KU fans. I'm hopeful that they'll right the ship a bit if they can get a couple wins in a row. At least to get into the tournament and give themselves a shot at a good couple weekends.

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