Adam Zagoria covers basketball at all levels. He is the author of two books and an award-winning journalist whose articles have appeared in ESPN The Magazine, SLAM, Sheridan Hoops, Sports Illustrated, Basketball Times and in newspapers nationwide.
The Zags (22-0) jumped up from third when Villanova and Kansas both were beaten in a week when seven of the top 10 lost.
Gonzaga received 46 first-place votes from the 65-member national media panel Monday. The Zags were No. 1 for the last three weeks of the 2012-13 season.
Gonzaga is the fifth team to reach No. 1 this season joining Duke, Kentucky, Villanova and Baylor.
Baylor (20-1), one of the three top 10 teams to not lose, jumped from fifth to second. The Bears had six first-place votes and were one point ahead of Kansas (19-2), which dropped one place after losing at West Virginia before winning at Kentucky. The Jayhawks had nine first-place votes.
Villanova, which had been No. 1 for the last two weeks and six overall, dropped to fourth after losing at Marquette. The Wildcats (20-2), who also had a last-second win over Virginia, were No. 1 on four ballots.
Northwestern (18-4) is the week’s lone newcomer. The Wildcats were last ranked for one week in 2009-10.
Arizona, the other top 10 team to get through the week without a loss, moved from seventh to fifth and was followed by Louisville, West Virginia, Kentucky, Virginia and Wisconsin.
UCLA was 11th and was followed by North Carolina, Oregon, Cincinnati, Florida State, Butler, Maryland, Saint Mary’s, South Carolina and Notre Dame.
The last five ranked teams were Duke, Creighton, Purdue, Florida and Northwestern.
Xavier (15-6), which has lost four of six with all the losses to ranked teams, dropped out from 24th. The Musketeers, who had been ranked for the last 29 polls, were seventh in the preseason voting.
West Virginia, which beat Kansas and Texas A&M, had the week’s biggest jump from 18th to No. 7. Louisville, which beat Pittsburgh and North Carolina State by an average of 40 points, moved from 13th to No. 6.
Florida State’s fall from sixth to No. 15 followed the Seminoles’ losses to Georgia Tech and Syracuse. Kentucky also lost twice last week — to Tennessee and Kansas — and the Wildcats dropped from fourth to eighth.
1. Gonzaga (22-0)
2. Baylor (20-1)
3. Kansas (19-2)
4. Villanova (20-2)
5. Arizona (20-2)
6. Louisville (18-4)
7. West Virginia (17-4)
7. Kentucky (17-4)
9. Virginia (16-4)
10. Wisconsin (18-3)
11. UCLA (19-3)
12. North Carolina (19-4)
13. Oregon (19-3)
14. Cincinnati (19-2)
15. Florida State (18-4)
16. Butler (18-4)
17. Maryland (19-2)
18. St. Mary’s (19-2)
19. South Carolina (17-4)
20. Notre Dame (17-5)
21. Duke (16-5)
22. Creighton (19-3)
23. Purdue (17-5)
24. Florida (16-5)
25. Northwestern (18-4)
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Adam Zagoria is a Basketball Insider who covers basketball at all levels. A contributor to The New York Times and SportsNet New York (SNY), he is also the author of two books and is an award-winning journalist and filmmaker. His articles have appeared in ESPN The Magazine, SLAM, Sheridan Hoops, Basketball Times and in newspapers nationwide. He also won an Emmy award for his work on the SNY mini-documentary on Syracuse guard Tyus Battle.
A veteran Ultimate Frisbee player, he has competed in numerous National and World Championships and, perhaps more importantly, his teams won the Westchester Summer League (WSL) championships in 2011 and 2013.
He lives in Manhattan with his wife and children.