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This Week's Top Ranking Between Michigan, KU?
January 27, 2013
Wendell Barnhouse is a nationally-known and respected columnist who has spent over 20 years covering collegiate athletics. He has reported from 25 Final Fours and more than three dozen bowl games and has written about the Big 12 and its schools since the conference's beginning. Barnhouse will be updating the Big 12 Insider on happenings and behind-the-scenes information about the conference.

Kansas was the most recent Big 12 team ranked No. 1. The Jayhawks topped the rankings the second week of February in 2011. We'll find out if the Jayhawks will ascend to the top spot this week when the media and coaches polls are published Monday.

Kansas is No. 3 in the current Associated Press poll behind No. 1 Duke (which lost big at Miami this week) and No. 2 Michigan. The Wolverines were receiving 11 first-place votes and the Jayhawks seven. Duke had 39 No. 1 votes. In the coaches' poll, Kansas was No. 2 behind Duke. KU was receiving 8 of the 31 first-place votes. Duke was getting 20 and Michigan 1.

Michigan won at Illinois, 74-60, Sunday.

The Jayhawks have won 17 in a row and are 18-1 following their 67-54 victory over Oklahoma Saturday. After the game, KU coach Bill Self was asked if his team deserved to be ranked No. 1.

"No! Nor do we deserve to be. ... I never would have thought before the season that this team would be ranked No. 1 at any point in time."

OK. That's one man's opinion.

Oklahoma coach Lon Kruger is a Kansas State graduate, which requires EMAW members to treat Kansas like Hatfields treat McCoys. He is convinced that the Jayhawks deserve to be No. 1.

"I think they're great. They got terrific athletes on the perimeter and a great shot-blocker inside. The guys are very unselfish; Bill does a terrific job. They play the game the way it's supposed to be played; and they move the ball, and they're great defensively. ... Yeah, I hope they are No. 1."

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