Auburn has now made it three consecutive Mondays as a ranked team in the AP Top 25.
AP POLL ALERT: Kentucky out of men’s AP Top 25 hoops for first time since March 2014; Nova No. 1 a 3rd straight week. See the full poll: https://t.co/rv4M31lMqM pic.twitter.com/j5a5mkA6mT— AP Top 25 (@AP_Top25) January 22, 2018
After entering the rankings at #22 two weeks ago, and rising to #17 last Monday, Auburn split last week’s games at Alabama and vs Georgia at home, and dropped two spots to #19 in this week’s AP Poll.
Now, you would say that a 17-2 record overall, 5-1 in the SEC, with the only loss since Mid-November being a five-point road defeat where we had a chance to win in the final seconds doesn’t warrant a two spot drop. I’d agree with you, but the voters are still handling this Auburn team with kid gloves. We’re not going to get the benefit of the doubt, and I’d imagine we probably need to win the vast, vast majority of our remaining games to sniff the top ten.
Couple that with the fact that the SEC hasn’t really been seen as a good basketball conference, and there you have it. That’s why we dropped a couple spots. However, we are the highest-ranked team out of the SEC, with the only other conference mates appearing in the rankings being Florida at #20 and Tennessee at #22. Auburn’s already beaten the Vols, so that’s nice. We’ll play the Gators near the end of February. That could end up being a pivotal game for the SEC regular season crown if these runs continue.
If Auburn can get by Missouri this week on the road, and LSU at home this Saturday, the Tigers could be in position for solid jump. There’s exactly one Power Five team with nineteen wins, and that’s Purdue at #3. Both Villanova and Virginia have eighteen wins.