Clemson Falls In AP Poll

Tigers now 15th

Ed Jenson
February 19, 2018 - 4:50 pm
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Virginia strengthened its hold on No. 1 in the AP Top 25 as it coasts to an Atlantic Coast Conference regular-season title, while Duke made a big jump after a pair of impressive wins without its top freshman.

The Cavaliers earned 42 of 65 first-place votes in the poll released Monday. That's 12 more than last week, when they reached No. 1 for the first time since the Ralph Sampson era.

The top four remained unchanged, with No. 2 Michigan State earning 19 first-place votes after rallying from 27 down to beat Northwestern. Third-ranked Villanova got the other four first-place votes after winning at No. 4 Xavier. And Duke jumped seven spots to No. 5 after beating Virginia Tech and Clemson despite playing without Marvin Bagley, the ACC's scoring and rebounding leader who is recovering from a knee sprain.

Virginia (24-2, 13-1 ACC) long ago took the drama out of the ACC race with a 12-0 start and hasn't played since winning at Miami last Tuesday. The Cavaliers lead second-place Duke by three games in the loss column and own the head-to-head tiebreaker from their win at Cameron Indoor Stadium on Jan. 27 , so they can clinch at least a share of the regular-season title and the No. 1 seed for the ACC Tournament in Brooklyn by beating Georgia Tech on Wednesday.

Win that one, and they travel to Pittsburgh — now 0-15 in the league — to claim the regular-season race outright.

"You always start the year and you're trying to obviously be about the moment, but you want to have a chance to try to win and be a part of ACC regular-season championships," Virginia coach Tony Bennett said Monday. "With this league and the depth and the amount of games, that would be a tremendous thing to do, so to have that opportunity at this stage with some games left is really good."

 

1. Virginia (42)  24-2       1601       1

2. Michigan St. (19)         26-3       1565       2

3. Villanova (4) 24-3       1509       3

4. Xavier              24-4       1398       4

5. Duke 22-5       1292       12

6. Texas Tech     22-5       1206       7

6. Gonzaga          25-4       1206       9

8. Kansas             21-6       1166       13

9. Purdue            24-5       1130       6

10. North Carolina           21-7       1074       14

11. Cincinnati    23-4       954         5

12. Auburn          23-4       873         10

13. Wichita St.   21-5       870         19

14. Arizona         21-6       831         17

15. Clemson       20-6       683         11

16. Ohio St.         22-7       680         8

17. Michigan      22-7       615         22

18. Rhode Island              21-4       455         16

19. Tennessee   19-7       427         18

20. Nevada         23-5       330         24

21. West Virginia             19-8       329         20

22. Saint Mary's (Cal)      25-4       291         15

23. Houston        21-5       263         —

24. Middle Tennessee   22-5       87           —

25. Florida St.    19-8       63           —

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