Kentucky rises in new college basketball rankings

Drew Brown – Sea of Blue

The Kentucky Wildcats are back in the top 10.

In the latest AP Top 25 Poll, the Wildcats moved up three spots into a tie with Alabama for the No. 10 spot following blowout wins over Mount St. Mary’s and Ohio.

Other SEC teams include Arkansas (13), Tennessee (15), Auburn (19) and Florida (23).

Gonzaga, UCLA, Purdue, Kansas and Duke make up the top five.

College Basketball AP Top 25 Poll

1. Gonzaga

2. UCLA

3. Purdue

4. Kansas

5. Duke

6. Baylor

7. Villanova

8. Texas

9. Memphis

T-10. Kentucky

T-10. Alabama

12. Houston

13. Arkansas

14. Illinois

15. Tennessee

16. St. Bonaventure

17. Arizona

18. BYU

19. Auburn

20. Michigan

21. Seton Hall

22. UConn

23. Florida

24. USC

25. Xavier

Elsewhere, Kentucky checked in at No. 11 in the newest ESPN power rankings with this assessment from Jeff Borzello.

After some first night overreactions regarding TyTy Washington Jr.’s slow start against Duke, the five-star freshman guard has steadily improved with each game. He had just nine points on 14 shots against the Blue Devils, but John Calipari said after the game that he wanted him to play through his struggles because he would be better off moving forward. In the Wildcats’ three games since, Washington has averaged 15.3 points, 5.7 rebounds and 3.7 assists. His outside shooting and ability to take care of the ball are still coming along, but he’s clearly getting more confident with each game — culminating in Friday’s 20-point, 11-rebound, five-assist performance against Ohio. With Davidson transfer Kellan Grady still getting accustomed to life in the SEC, Washington’s abilities to score and get his own shot are much needed.

Kentucky has games this week vs. Albany (11/22) and North Florida (11/26).