College Basketball: Coaches Poll Top 25 updated as final week of February arrives

On3 imageby:Steve Samra02/26/24

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The USA TODAY Coaches Poll Top 25 has been updated to reflect the current state of college basketball as we enter the final week of February, with the NCAA Tournament looming large.

Some gigantic clashes took place over the weekend. In shocking fashion, the Duke Blue Devils fell to the Wake Forest Demon Deacons, but the commentary afterwards had more to do with court-storming than the game, it seemed. Elsewhere, Houston defeated Baylor in a thriller, as the Cougars continued their roll.

There were plenty of other headline-grabbing results throughout the week, which led to some change in the Coaches Poll Top 25. Here’s where everything stands as the final days in February slip into the wind.

1. Houston

Houston | © Raymond Carlin III-USA TODAY Sports
Houston | © Raymond Carlin III-USA TODAY Sports

Houston had one of its best weeks of the season with Top 25 wins over Iowa State and Baylor. They lead the Big 12 in their first season in the conference and look the part of a championship threat so far in 2024.

The Cougars will play against a skidding Cincinnati team next before Oklahoma on the road this weekend. We’ll see if Houston can continue their hot streak, and move forward asserting their dominance.

2. UConn

UConn | © David Butler II-USA TODAY Sports
UConn | © David Butler II-USA TODAY Sports

UConn ended a long winning streak this week with an upset loss against Creighton on the road, but bounced back nicely over the weekend against Villanova to avoid a significant drop in the rankings. They must now try to reclaim the top spot in the Top 25 with more big results.

The Huskies will get a week off to prepare for their next game against Seton Hall on Sunday.

3. Purdue

Purdue | © Rick Osentoski-USA TODAY Sports
Purdue | © Rick Osentoski-USA TODAY Sports

Purdue continues their steady pace at the moment, just barely behind UConn and Houston. They rebounded from last week’s upset loss against Ohio State and took care of business against Rutgers and Michigan.

The Boilermakers will face Michigan State after getting a week to prepare on Saturday.

4. Tennessee

Vols | © Randy Sartin-USA TODAY Sports
Vols | © Randy Sartin-USA TODAY Sports

Tennessee avoided a bad loss against Missouri in the mid-week, then picked up a convincing win over a Texas A&M team in desperate need of a big win. They climb up toward the top of the national rankings and now sit atop the SEC standings as well.

The Volunteers will host Auburn in the mid-week slate before a roadtrip to face Alabama in a pivotal conference title race matchup.

5. Marquette

MQ | © Mark Hoffman_Milwaukee Journal Sentinel _ USA TODAY NETWORK
MQ | © Mark Hoffman_Milwaukee Journal Sentinel _ USA TODAY NETWORK

Marquette had no trouble dispatching DePaul in a rebound effort this week, then beat a Xavier team which needed big wins to help build an NCAA Tournament case. They showed an ability to hold steady throughout the Big East schedule.

The Golden Eagles will continue the schedule with a game against Providence on Wednesday before facing off against Creighton on the road.

6. Iowa State

ISU | © Nirmalendu Majumdar_Ames Tribune _ USA TODAY NETWORK
ISU | © Nirmalendu Majumdar_Ames Tribune _ USA TODAY NETWORK

Iowa State dropped a tough game against Houston on the road after moving all the way to No. 6 in last week’s Top 25, but was able to handle West Virginia convincingly over the weekend to balance things out and remain in their spot for another week.

The Cyclones will face Oklahoma before testing themselves on the road against UCF this weekend.

7. Arizona 

AZ | © Zachary BonDurant-USA TODAY Sports
AZ | © Zachary BonDurant-USA TODAY Sports

Arizona drops this week after falling in a matchup for the Pac-12 regular season lead against Washington State. They were able to respond quickly, beating Washington just two days later to avoid a big fall.

The Wildcats will face in-state rival Arizona State before a weekend matchup against Oregon.

8. North Carolina

UNC | © Hannah Pajewski-USA TODAY Sports
UNC | © Hannah Pajewski-USA TODAY Sports

North Carolina also got a bye week leading up to a weekend matchup against Virginia and was able to come away with the victory. They stay atop the ACC standings for another week and with a loss from Duke look likely to carry momentum through the final weeks.

The Tar Heels will face Miami on Monday before getting an in-state rivalry matchup against NC State over the weekend.

9. Kansas

Kansas | © Denny Medley-USA TODAY Sports
Kansas | © Denny Medley-USA TODAY Sports

Kansas got a bye week to prepare for Texas at home and left no doubt in a runaway win. They might have made the most of the opportunity, but still miss Kevin McCullar with injury as they chase Houston in the Big 12 standings.

The Jayhawks will play BYU at home before taking a roadtrip to face Baylor on Saturday.

10. Duke

Duke | © Cory Knowlton-USA TODAY Sports
Duke | © Cory Knowlton-USA TODAY Sports

Duke holds onto a spot inside the Top 10 this week thanks to a win over Miami in the mid-week. They followed up that big performance with a loss against Wake Forest but still have the resume to stick here.

The Blue Devils will look to build momentum against Louisville before a massive ACC matchup with Virginia on Saturday.

College Basketball Coaches Poll — Ranking 11-25:

11) Auburn
12) Creighton
13) Alabama
14) Baylor
15) Kentucky
16) Illinois
17) St. Mary’s
18) South Carolina
19) San Diego State
20) Dayton
21) Washington State
22) Gonzaga
23) Utah State
24) Florida
25) South Florida

Schools Dropped Out: No. 21 BYU; No. 23 Texas Tech; No. 24 Colorado State; No. 25 TCU

Others Receiving Votes: BYU 53; Wake Forest 51; TCU 36; Texas Tech 35; Wisconsin 20; Oklahoma 19; Clemson 15; Nevada 14; Virginia 10; Nebraska 8; App State 8; Seton Hall 7; Northwestern 3; Loyola Chicago 3; James Madison 2; Indiana State 2; Boise State 1

As you can see, things are heating up, leading to some fascinating changes within the Coaches Poll Top 25 as the season rages on for college basketball through the end of the month. We’ll see how the rankings change moving forward. Time will tell how it shakes out next week, as we enter March.

On3’s James Fletcher III contributed to this article.