/College basketball rankings: Illinois surges into top five; Kansas rejoins AP Top 25 poll
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College basketball rankings: Illinois surges into top five; Kansas rejoins AP Top 25 poll

USATSI

The top of this week’s AP Top 25 college basketball rankings has a fresh face in the mix of the top five, with Illinois moving up one spot to No. 5. The Illini, riding a five-game winning streak, snatched Villanova’s spot after the Wildcats took their second loss in four games in lopsided fashion to Creighton over the weekend. Villanova dropped several spots but managed to hang in the top 10.

The No. 5 ranking matches the Illini’s highest ranking of the season, which came all the way back in Week 2. They endured a rough patch in December, hit a few speed bumps in January but have turned a corner of late with two of the wins in their latest hot streak coming against ranked foes.

There were several other new entries into this week’s top 10 as well, as Alabama jumped to No. 8 from 11 and Oklahoma moved to No. 9 from 12.

Kansas re-joined the poll at No. 23 after a one week hiatus.

AP Top 25

1. Gonzaga
2. Baylor
3. Michigan
4. Ohio State
5. Illinois
6. Houston
7. Virginia
8. Alabama
9. Oklahoma
10. Villanova
11. Iowa
12. Texas
13. West Virginia
14. Creighton
15. Texas Tech
16. Florida State
17. USC
18. Virginia Tech
19. Tennessee
20. Missouri
21. Wisconsin
22. Loyola of Chicago
23. Kansas
24. Arkansas
25. San Diego State
Others receiving votes: Oklahoma St. 71, Rutgers 49, Belmont 47, Louisville 40, Colorado 31, Oregon 30, Drake 22, Purdue 20, Florida 17, Clemson 17, LSU 16, UCLA 11, VCU 10, Saint Louis 5, Xavier 4, Toledo 3, UC Santa Barbara 2, Western Kentucky 2, North Carolina 2, BYU 1, Wichita St. 1, Wright St. 1, Utah St. 1.