Old Dominion Moves Up To Sixteenth Spot In AP Poll
By ODU Athletics
Feb. 25, 2002
By CHUCK SCHOFFNER
AP Sports Writer
Texas Christian joined the AP women's basketball poll for the first time Monday, coming in at No. 25 after following up a conference championship in one league with a title in another.
Connecticut remained a unanimous choice for No. 1 and is now within one victory of its third unbeaten regular season in eight years, and Stanford held at No. 2 heading into the first Pac-10 Conference tournament ever.
TCU (22-5) made an impressive debut in Conference USA by winning the regular-season championship, clinching the title with a 72-57 victory over Marquette on Sunday.
The Horned Frogs won the Western Athletic Conference regular-season and tournament championships last year and made the NCAA tournament for the first time, reaching the second round.
"This has been a goal of ours since we arrived here two and a half years ago," said TCU coach Jeff Mittie, who moved over from Arkansas State. "After getting to the final 32 last year, our goal at the end of this season is to be in the Top 25, and this is a step toward that."
None of TCU's top nine players has been in the program more than two years. The Horned Frogs started the season 2-2 but have come on strong and won 15 of 17.
They've done it with defense, holding opponents to 57.7 points and 34.7 percent shooting.
"That's the thing we sold early in the year," Mittie said. "We felt our offense would come along as the year developed, but our defense had to be good all year for us to win."
Connecticut (29-0) received all 44 first-place votes from a national media panel and had 1,100 points. The Huskies had two more one-sided victories last week, 106-41 over Providence and 80-42 over Rutgers. They finish the regular season at West Virginia on Tuesday.
Stanford (28-1) beat UCLA 98-80 to finish 18-0 in the Pac-10, six games ahead of second-place Arizona State and Washington. The Cardinal had 1,053 points in the voting and Tennessee (24-3) was third with 980. Tennessee, the Southeastern Conference champion, moved up one place.
Duke (24-3), just the second team to go 16-0 in the ACC, climbed one spot to fourth and Big 12 champ Oklahoma fell two places to fifth after losing to Texas.
Vanderbilt was sixth and Purdue seventh, followed by Baylor, Louisiana Tech and Iowa State. Iowa State's jump from 13th to 10th matched the biggest in the poll. The Cyclones beat Missouri and Kansas last week and have won seven of eight after a 2-5 start in the Big 12.
Louisiana Tech (20-4) fell two places to ninth after losing at Rice, its first loss to a team outside the Top 10.
Colorado remained at No. 11 and South Carolina fell two places to 12th after splitting two games, losing to Auburn and beating Mississippi State.
Texas was 13th and Kansas State dropped two spots to 14th after losing to Colorado. Texas Tech was 15th, followed by Old Dominion, Minnesota, Boston College North Carolina and Colorado State.
Notre Dame, Florida, Cincinnati, Georgia and TCU held the final five places.
Virginia Tech, 25th last week, dropped out after losing to Miami and Villanova.
Boston College matched Iowa State's climb of three places, moving from 21st to 18th. The Eagles beat Syracuse and St. John's last week and are assured of finishing no worse than third in the Big East.
Florida fell from 16th to 22nd for the biggest drop within the poll. The Lady Gators beat Arkansas but lost to Mississippi State by 20. A loss at home to Michigan State sent Minnesota from 14th to 17th.
The Women's Top Twenty Five
The top 25 teams in The Associated Press' women's college basketball poll, with first-place votes in parentheses, records through Feb. 24, total points based on 25 points for a first-place vote through one point for a 25th-place vote and previous ranking
Others receiving votes: Fla. International 53, UNLV 35, Mississippi St. 34, Penn St. 33, LSU 22, Villanova 19, Arkansas 14, Arizona St. 12, Iowa 12, Virginia Tech 10, Washington 9, George Washington 5, New Mexico 5, Drake 3, Houston 2, UC Santa Barbara 1, Wisconsin 1.