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Mark Berman's new AP Top 25 men's basketball ballot

Mark Berman's new AP Top 25 men's basketball ballot

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It's time to send a new Top 25 men's basketball ballot to the Associated Press.

I booted Rutgers after it lost not just at Michigan but also at home to Maryland.

I also kicked out Tennessee after its lopsided home loss to Kentucky. Vols have lost two of their last three games.

Here's the ballot.

1. Gonzaga (22-0) stays here after beating Saint Mary's and San Diego. Next: Thurs. against Santa Clara and Sat. against Loyola Marymount.

2. Baylor (17-0) stays here after another idle week. Next: finally back at it Tues. against Iowa State, plus a big game Thursday against West Virginia and another big game Saturday at Kansas.

3. Michigan (16-1) stays here after beating Rutgers and winning at Ohio State. Next: a big game Thurs. at Iowa and a Sat. visit to Indiana.

4. Ohio State (18-5) stays here after winning at Penn State and losing to Michigan. Next: Thurs. at Michigan State and a big game Sunday against Iowa.

5. Illinois (16-5) stays here after beating Northwestern and winning at Minnesota. Next: Tues. at Michigan State, Thurs. against Nebraska and a big game Sat. at Wisconsin.

6. Oklahoma (14-5) stays here after winning at Iowa State. Next: Tues. at Kansas State and a big game Sat. against Oklahoma State.

7. Alabama (18-5) moves up one spot after beating Vanderbilt. Next: a big game Wed. at Arkansas and a Sat. visit to Miss. State.

8. West Virginia (15-6) moves up two spots after winning at Texas. Next: Tues. at TCU, the big game Thursday against Baylor and a Sat. game against Kansas State.

9. Florida State (13-3) moves up nine spots after squashing UVa and winning at Pitt. Next: Wed. at Miami and an intriguing game Sat. at North Carolina.

10. Villanova (14-3) moves up one spot after beating UConn. Next: Tuesday against St. John's and Sunday at Butler.

11. Iowa (17-6) moves up three spots after winning at Wisconsin and beating Penn State. Next: the big game Thurs. at Michigan and the big game Sunday at Ohio State. What a week.

12. Houston (18-3) falls five spots after losing at Wichita State and thumping Cincinnati. Next: an intriguing game Thursday against Western Kentucky and a Sunday game against South Florida.

13. Kansas (17-7) moves up eight spots after winning at Kansas State and beating Texas Tech. Next: a big game Tuesday at Texas and the big game Saturday against Baylor.

14. Texas (13-6) falls one spot after losing at home to West Virginia. Next: the big game Tuesday against Kansas and a big game Saturday at Texas Tech.

15. Virginia Tech (14-4) stays here after another idle week. Next: Tuesday against Georgia Tech and Sat. against Wake Forest.

16. Creighton (16-5) stays here after an idle week. Next: Wednesday against DePaul and Sat. at Xavier.

17. Texas Tech (14-7) falls five spots after losing at Kansas. Next: a big game Monday at Oklahoma State and the big game Sat. against Texas.

18. Virginia (15-5) drops nine spots after losing big at Florida State and falling at Duke. Next: Wed. against N.C. State.

19. Oklahoma State (14-6) moves up four spots after beating Iowa State. Next: the big game Monday against Texas Tech and the big game Sat. against Oklahoma.

20. Arkansas (17-5) cracks my ballot here after beating Florida. The Razorbacks have won seven of their last eight games, including a win at Missouri. Next: the big game Wed. against Alabama and a good game Sat. against LSU.

21. USC (18-4) falls four spots after beating Arizona State and losing to Arizona. Next: a big game Monday against Oregon, an intriguing Thursday game at Colorado and a Sat. game at Utah.

22. Belmont (24-1) moves up two spots after beating Jacksonville State and Tenn. Tech. Next: Thurs. at Eastern Kentucky and Sat. at Morehead State.

23. Wisconsin (16-8) falls one spot after losing at home to Iowa and winning at Northwestern. Next: the big game Sat. against Illinois.

24. Missouri (14-6) falls five spots after losing at Georgia and snapping its three-game skid with a win at South Carolina. Jeremiah Tillmon returned for the win over the Gamecocks after missing two games because of a death in the famiy. Next: Tues. against Ole Miss and perhaps Sat. against Texas A&M, if A&M ends its COVID pause.

25. For this last spot, I looked hard at leaving Tennessee on my ballot and dropping the Vols five spots to No. 25. I also looked at San Diego State, Loyola of Chicago, Drake, LSU, UCLA and Wichita State. But in the end, I decided to have Oregon (14-4) return to my ballot here after a five-week absence after the Ducks beat Colorado and Utah to extend their winning streak to five games. Next: the big game Monday at USC, a Thursday game at Stanford and a Saturday game at Cal.

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