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Mark Berman's new AP Top 25 ballot

Mark Berman's new AP Top 25 ballot

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It's time to send a new Top 25 men's basketball ballot to The Associated Press.

I could easily have not evicted anyone, but I needed to make room to put Texas Tech and Virginia back on my ballot after their marquee wins this past week. So I had to find two teams to kick out.

I booted Louisville after its loss at Miami.

And I kicked out Illinois after its home loss to Ohio State. Illinois has suffered back-to-back losses, including a home loss to Maryland.

Louisville and Illinois could very well be back on my ballot next week, but I need to evict them for now to recognize Texas Tech and UVa.

Here is the ballot:

1. Gonzaga (14-0) stays here after beating Pepperdine and winning at Saint Mary's. Next: Sat. against Pacific.

2. Baylor (12-0) stays here after winning at Texas Tech. Next: a big game Monday against Kansas and a big game Saturday at Oklahoma State.

3. Villanova (8-1) stays here after another idle week. Next: hopefully the Wildcats will play Tuesday against Seton Hall and Saturday against Providence.

4. Iowa (12-2) moves up three spots after winning at Northwestern. Next: Sunday against Nebraska.

5. Texas (11-2) falls one spot after losing to Texas Tech and beating Kansas State. Next: Wed. at Iowa State and Sat. at TCU.

6. Michigan (11-1) moves up two spots after beating Wisconsin and losing at Minnesota. Next: Tuesday against Maryland and Friday at Purdue.

7. Tennessee (10-1) moves up two spots after beating Vanderbilt. Next: a good game Tuesday at Florida and a big game Saturday against Missouri.

8. Kansas (10-3) falls three spots after losing at Oklahoma State. Next: the big game Monday at Baylor and a Sat. game at Oklahoma.

9. Houston (11-1) moves up two spots after beating UCF. Next: Wed. against Tulsa and Sat. against Cincinnati.

10. Wisconsin (11-3) stays here after losing at Michigan and winning at Rutgers. Next: Wed. against Northwestern and a big game Sat. against Ohio State.

11. Minnesota (11-4) moves up six spots after handing Michigan its first loss. I am keeping Minnesota behind Wisconsin because it has lost at Wisconsin. Next: Sat. vs. Maryland.

12. Ohio State (11-3) moves up six spots after beating Northwestern and winning at Illinois. Next: Tuesday against Purdue and the big game Sat. at Wisconsin.

13. Virginia Tech (11-2) moves up six spots after beating Duke and winning at Wake Forest. Next: Wed. against Boston College and Sat. at Syracuse.

14. West Virginia (9-4) stays here after an idle week. Next: hopefully the teams' COVID pause ends Saturday at Kansas State.

15. Missouri (8-2) stays here after winning at Texas A&M. Next: Tuesday against South Carolina and the big game Sat. at Tennessee.

16. Alabama (11-3) moves up four spots after winning at Kentucky and beating Arkansas. Alabama has won seven in a row. This is the second straight week I have ranked Alabama; perhaps more voters will join me this week. Next: a good game Tues. at LSU and a Sat. game with Miss. State.

17. Oklahoma State (9-3) moves up seven spots after beating Kansas. Oklahoma State also boasts a win at Texas Tech. This is the third straight week Oklahoma State is on my ballot; perhaps more voters will join me this week. Next: the big game Saturday against Baylor.

18. Texas Tech (11-4) returns to my ballot after a two-week absence after winning at Texas and losing to Baylor. Next: Wed. at TCU and Sat. against Iowa State.

19. Virginia (9-2) returns to my ballot for the first time since my preseason ballot after beating Notre Dame and winning at Clemson. Next: Sat. against Ga. Tech.

20. Creighton (10-3) falls 14 spots after losing in OT at Butler. Next: Wed. against Providence and a big game Sat. against UConn.

21. UCLA (11-2) stays here after beating Washington State and Washington. This is my second straight week ranking UCLA; perhaps more voters will join me this week. Next: a big game Tues. at Oregon, a Thurs. game at Cal and a Sat game with Stanford.

22. Saint Louis (7-1) stays here after another idle week. Next: hopefully the COVID pause ends Wed. at UMass, and a Sat. game with St. Bonaventure.

23. Colorado (11-3) stays here after beating Utah, Cal and Stanford. This is also my second straight week ranking Colorado; perhaps more voters will join me this week. Next: Wed. at Washington and Sat. at Washington State.

24. Clemson (9-2) falls 12 spots after losing big at home to UVa, albeit in Clemson's first game after a COVID pause. Next: Wed. at Ga. Tech and a good game Sat. at Florida State.

25. For this last spot, I thought about leaving Louisville or Illinois on my ballot here. But in the end, I decided to leave UConn (7-1) here at No. 25 for the second straight week. After all, UConn went 1-0 on the week, having beaten DePaul. Next: Monday against St. John's, a good game Wed. against Xavier and the big game Sat. at Creighton.

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Mark Berman covers Virginia Tech men’s basketball and many other teams at the university. He also helps cover other colleges, including Radford, VMI, Roanoke, Washington and Lee and Ferrum.

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