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South Carolina stays unanimous No. 1 in women’s AP Top 25. West Virginia in, Washington out

by Sophia Chen
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Basketball Rankings

South Carolina has maintained its undisputed position as the top-ranked team in the women’s basketball poll of The Big Big News. This Monday, The Gamecocks received unanimous support from all 36 votes cast by a national media panel, extending their reign at the pinnacle for the seventh consecutive week. It’s worth noting that South Carolina had previously held the top spot for an impressive 38 consecutive weeks over the previous two seasons, only relinquishing it this year when LSU claimed the preseason No. 1 ranking.

In light of the holiday season, most teams had a relatively light schedule last week, resulting in minimal changes in the top 10 rankings. Following South Carolina, the top positions remained unchanged, with UCLA, North Carolina State, Iowa, and Texas trailing closely behind the Gamecocks.

Notably, Ohio State experienced a drop in the rankings, sliding four spots down to No. 17 following a six-point loss to UCLA.

The emergence of West Virginia into the poll at No. 25 marks a significant development for the Big 12 Conference, bringing the total number of ranked teams from the conference to five. This is the first appearance for West Virginia in the rankings since 2021. The Big 12 now boasts a strong presence with Texas, Baylor, No. 11 Kansas State, No. 23 TCU, and West Virginia, a situation not seen since the 2021-22 season. It’s worth highlighting that the Big 12, Pac 12, and SEC are the only three conferences where every school maintains a winning record.

As we approach the new year, conference play is set to kick off for most schools, promising a series of exciting matchups. Some of the standout games to watch include UCLA facing USC, Colorado taking on Utah, and Baylor going head-to-head with Texas. Additionally, a key Big East matchup is scheduled with Marquette visiting UConn, adding to the anticipation of the upcoming games.

In a historical context, this marks the seventh time that the poll has been released on Christmas. The previous instance was in 2017 when Stanford notably dropped out of the rankings for the first time in 17 years. The other years featuring a Christmas release were 1979, 1983, 1995, 2000, and 2006.

For those interested in staying updated on AP Top 25 basketball throughout the season, you can sign up for poll alerts and updates on the official AP women’s college basketball website at [insert URL].

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) about Basketball Rankings

What is the significance of South Carolina maintaining the No. 1 spot in women’s basketball?

South Carolina’s continuous reign at No. 1 underscores their dominance in women’s college basketball, having held the top position for seven consecutive weeks. This achievement reflects their consistent performance and strength as a team.

How did West Virginia enter the top 25, and what’s noteworthy about their appearance?

West Virginia entered the top 25 rankings, marking their first appearance since 2021. This is significant for the Big 12 Conference, as it now boasts five ranked teams, a notable development that hasn’t occurred since the 2021-22 season. West Virginia’s presence adds to the conference’s competitiveness.

Why did Ohio State drop four spots in the rankings?

Ohio State’s drop in the rankings to No. 17 was a result of their six-point loss to UCLA. This defeat led to a slight adjustment in their ranking, showcasing how individual game outcomes can impact a team’s position.

What are the upcoming key matchups in women’s college basketball?

As conference play begins, several exciting matchups are on the horizon. Notable games to watch include UCLA vs. USC, Colorado vs. Utah, and Baylor vs. Texas. Additionally, a key Big East matchup featuring Marquette visiting UConn promises to be an exciting showdown.

How often has the women’s basketball poll been released on Christmas, and what historical moments are associated with it?

The women’s basketball poll has been released on Christmas seven times in history. Notably, in 2017, Stanford dropped out of the rankings for the first time in 17 years during a Christmas release. Other Christmas releases occurred in 1979, 1983, 1995, 2000, and 2006, with each year carrying its own historical significance in the world of women’s college basketball.

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