SMU basketball ranked in AP Top 10 for first time since 1985

SMU basketball is in the Associated Press top 10 for the first time since February 1985.

SMU moved up five spots this week after a thrilling come from behind win against Cincinnati and a blowout of Central Florida.

The Mustangs (15-0, 4-0 American Athletic Conference) and No. 19 South Carolina (15-0) are the only unbeaten Division I teams. SMU is ineligible for the postseason because of NCAA rules violations.

The win over UCF on Sunday came three days after SMU wiped out a seven-point deficit in the final 3:40 to beat Cincinnati. "It was important for us to validate the Cincinnati win with this one," said senior Jordan Tolbert after Sunday’s game.

SMU is currently playing with just seven scholarship players. The Mustangs have two road games this week – Wednesday at East Carolina and Sunday at Tulane.

Kansas and Oklahoma, who played one of the season's best games last week, remain 1-2 in the men's Top 25 basketball poll by The Associated Press. The Jayhawks (14-1) beat the Sooners 109-106 in triple overtime. They received all but two first-place votes Monday from the 65-member national media panel. It is the second week at No. 1 for Kansas.

Oklahoma (13-1) drew one No. 1 vote. It was followed by Maryland and Michigan State (16-1), which had the other first-place vote. North Carolina is fifth followed by Villanova, Xavier, Miami, Duke and SMU.

Texas A&M (13-2) moved up six spots to No. 15 from No. 21 last week.

No. 21 Baylor and No. 25 Gonzaga are the week's newcomers, replacing Connecticut and Dayton.

The last time SMU was in the top 10 was Feb. 19, 1985, when the Mustangs were No. 9. Things didn't go well from there as they lost five of their last games, including a second-round loss to Loyola Chicago in the NCAA Tournament.

That team, featuring center Jon Koncak and guard Butch Moore and coached by Dave Bliss, reached as high as No. 2 during the season, but the Mustangs (23-10) weren't even ranked in the season's final poll.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.