Women's Basketball: AP Poll updated after marquee week for biggest teams

On3 imageby:Dan Morrison02/05/24


The women’s basketball AP Poll has been updated for the first time in February after another excellent week of games. With that has come some changes at the top while other teams are continuing to establish themselves as forces to be reckoned with.

Across the country, there are several storylines that fans are following. Perhaps the most notable is Caitlin Clark chasing the career scoring record of 3,527 points, held by Kelsey Plum. Currently, she trails by just 65 points. Then there is the dominant South Carolina team that is still unbeaten and trying to have its own historic season.

Amid all of that, here is the latest AP Top-25 Poll in the women’s game:

1. South Carolina Gamecocks

Photo by Maddie Meyer/Getty Images

The Gamecocks are up to 21-0 on the season and have continued to dominate throughout the schedule. That included wins of 22 points and 29 points this past week against Auburn and Ole Miss. Now, with eight regular season games remaining, South Carolina is feeling like an unbeaten season is well within reason.

Next Sunday, South Carolina has an interesting non-conference game against UConn. That game, amid SEC play, is going to be tough and head coach Dawn Staley knows that South Carolina is going to get UConn’s best shot. However, the Gamecocks also can’t look ahead to it and overlook Missouri earlier in the week.

2. Iowa Hawkeyes

Iowa G Caitlin Clark

Iowa has arguably the best individual player in the country in Caitlin Clark. She has become must-see and rightfully has garnered a ton of attention. However, that sometimes takes away from just how talented the entire Hawkeyes team is this season.

After adding two more road wins, the Hawkeyes have only lost one game since before Thanksgiving. They’re set to make a run for a Big Ten Championship and are hoping for much more this year. Iowa will return home on Thursday for its next game against Penn State.

3. NC State Wolfpack

Zoe Brooks, NC State
© Ken Ruinard-USA TODAY Sports

The NC State Wolfpack have bounced back since losing two of three ACC games in early January. Since then, NC State has won four in a row and looks ready to make a late season push within the conference. That included a good win against North Carolina on Thursday.

Next week is going to be tough for the Wolfpack, though. The Wolfpack are getting ready to host Louisville and Virginia Tech this week, both of which promise to be excellent games. Those are also both teams ahead of NC State in the ACC standings, which is a highly competitive conference to begin with.

4. Colorado Buffaloes

Shelomi Sanders, Colorado
© Ron Chenoy-USA TODAY Sports

The Colorado Buffaloes have won three straight games, including two road contests last week in conference play. With that, Colorado has also made itself one of the teams competing at the top of the Pac-12 Conference as the season enters the home stretch.

Next week, Colorado will return home for games against Oregon and Oregon State. That game against the Beavers, in particular, should prove to be interesting. After all, Oregon State was the last team to beat Colorado this season.

5. Ohio State Buckeyes

Ohio State Buckeyes forward Cotie McMahon (32), guard Rikki Harris (1) and guard Jacy Sheldon (4) sit together during an open practice at Value City Arena. (Adam Cairns/Columbus Dispatch/USA TODAY NETWORK)

In a way, Ohio State had gone under the radar in the Big Ten this season, overshadowed by Iowa. However, since beating Iowa the Buckeyes have announced themselves as one of the best teams in the country. That continued last week with wins against Wisconsin and Indiana.

Next week, Ohio State is going to hit the road for games against Minnesota and Michigan State. Also on the horizon is a rematch with Iowa, and with both teams at 10-1 in Big Ten play, it easily could decide the conference this season.

6. Stanford Cardinal

Stanford HC Tara Vanderveer
D. Ross Cameron | USA TODAY Sports

Last week was a mixed bag for the Cardinal. On Friday, Stanford lost at home to a talented USC team. That stung, but Stanford bounced back on Sunday while hosting another talented team in UCLA. In the end, the Cardinal won that game by 20 points.

Next week, Stanford is going to be heading North, for road games against Washington and Washington State. In a Pac-12 Conference that has become very competitive at the top, winning these games is going to be important to keep Stanford on track the rest of the way.

7. Texas Longhorns

Texas women's basketball
© Chris Jones-USA TODAY Sports

The Texas Longhorns are coming off an excellent week. First, Texas went on the road and beat a good Baylor team. After that, the Longhorns hosted Kansas State, getting an upset win and the Longhorns’ second AP Top 25 win of the week.

Still, at 8-3 in conference play, the Texas Longhorns are still in fourth place and two games out of first. With games against TCU and Houston next week, the slate is easier on paper. However, nothing is given in the Big 12 and every game is important at this point for the Longhorns.

8. Kansas State Wildcats

K-State WBB
Serena Sundell of Kansas State against Baylor | USA Today

It was a tough week for the Kansas State Wildcats, who are falling from second in last week’s AP Poll to where they are now. However, that can happen when a team drops two games in a week, and that’s exactly what the Wildcats did, against Oklahoma and a talented Texas team.

Still, there is plenty of time to bounce back from that and Kansas State is still a very talented team. Next up, the Wildcats will be back at home against Oklahoma State. A win there would go a long way in getting Kansas State right for the final stretch of the season.

9. UCLA Bruins

Mar 25, 2023; Greenville, SC, USA; UCLA Bruins guard Charisma Osborne (20) passes the ball to guard Kiki Rice (1) against the South Carolina Gamecocks during the second half of the NCAA Women’s Tournament at Bon Secours Wellness Arena. Mandatory Credit: Jim Dedmon-USA TODAY Sports

UCLA has now lost two out of three games, including a frustrating loss to Stanford on the road that saw UCLA lose by 20 points. That was on the road and has put the Bruins in a tough spot moving forward, falling to fifth in the Pac-12 standings. That’s two games behind Stanford and Colorado with eight games remaining.

Next week the Bruins will return home to play Arizona and Arizona State. Both of those games are going to be vital for UCLA if the Bruins are going to make a push to win the conference late in the year.

10. USC Trojans

USC Trojans guard JuJu Watkins (12) beats UCLA Bruins forward Gabriela Jaquez (23) to the ball in the second half at Galen Center.
USC Trojans guard JuJu Watkins (12) beats UCLA Bruins forward Gabriela Jaquez (23) to the ball in the second half at Galen Center. (Jayne Kamin-Oncea-USA TODAY Sports)

The USC Trojans are coming off an excellent week and were rewarded by moving up to the AP Top 10. The Trojans upset Stanford on the road before taking care of business against Cal. With that, USC is up to a four game winning streak.

Next week, with games against Arizona State and Arizona, the Trojans will look to keep up their winning ways. At sixth in the Pac-12 standings, winning those games is going to be vital if USC is going to make a run at the conference title.

Remaining teams in AP Top 25

11. UConn
12. Notre Dame
13. LSU
14. Indiana
15. Louisville
16. Virginia Tech
17. Oregon State
18. Baylor
19. Gonzaga
20. Utah
21. Creighton
22. West Virginia
23. Syracuse
24. Oklahoma
25. Princeton

Others Receiving Votes: UNLV 32, North Carolina 22, Fairfield 21, Mississippi State 19, Tennessee 3, Florida State 2, Michigan State 1, Duke 1.