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Ohio State Returns to Top Spot in AP Basketball Poll; St. John's Is 15th

Ohio State University reclaimed the top position in the Associated Press college basketball poll, while St. John’s University climbed to No. 15, a week after entering the ranking for the first time in more than a decade.

The Buckeyes (27-2) received 45 of 65 first-place votes in the media poll to move atop the ranking as Duke University, the former No. 1, fell into a tie for fourth with Pittsburgh following a loss two days ago at Virginia Tech. Duke (26-3) received one first-place vote.

Kansas, which held the No. 1 ranking two weeks ago, climbed one spot to second, receiving 14 first-place votes, and Brigham Young (five first-place votes) jumped four positions to No. 3. The Cougars won 80-67 at San Diego State two days ago, dropping the Aztecs three spots to ninth.

Ohio State played two games in the past week, winning 89-70 over Illinois on Feb. 22 and topping Indiana 82-61 yesterday. The Buckeyes led the poll for four weeks before dropping to second for the past two weeks after a loss to Wisconsin.

Purdue is sixth and Texas is seventh, while Notre Dame, San Diego State and Wisconsin complete the top 10. Louisville is 11th, followed by Syracuse, North Carolina and Florida.

St. John’s climbed eight spots after entering the top 25 last week for the first time since November 2000. The jump came after a 76-51 home win over DePaul on Feb. 23 and an 81-68 road victory two days ago against Villanova.

Connecticut is 16th, Georgetown 17th, Arizona 18th, Villanova 19th and Kentucky 20th. Vanderbilt, Missouri, Xavier Texas A&M and Utah State complete the top 25.

To contact the reporter on this story: Mason Levinson in New York at mlevinson@bloomberg.net.

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Michael Sillup at msillup@bloomberg.net.

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