The University of Southern California’s (USC) women’s basketball team has soared to its highest ranking in 29 years, securing the sixth spot in The Associated Press’s (AP) women’s basketball poll. This achievement can largely be attributed to the performance of freshman standout Juju Watkins. With three 30-point-plus games under her belt this season, Watkins has equaled the school record for freshmen, previously held by Trojan legends Lisa Leslie and Paula McGee.
With USC up at 6th, the unanimous No. 1 South Carolina Gamecocks, however, continue to dominate the AP Women’s poll.
The South Carolina Gamecocks team effortlessly secured two victories over the Thanksgiving holiday; meanwhile, UCLA, Stanford, Iowa, and N.C. State complete the top five rankings. Last week proved to be particularly memorable for UCLA as they achieved a historic milestone, defeating UConn for the first time in school history. The Bruins emerged victorious in the inaugural Cayman Islands Classic, marking a significant moment for their program. Similarly, Stanford and Iowa demonstrated their prowess by enjoying successful runs in holiday tournaments.
Notably, N.C. State has made an astonishing leap from being unranked in the preseason poll to claiming the fifth spot, defying all expectations. The Colorado Buffaloes faced a setback, dropping to a tie for seventh place alongside LSU after their defeat against the then-No. 1 Tigers at the beginning of the season. On the other hand, Virginia Tech secured the ninth spot, closely followed by Texas at the tenth. The Longhorns are set to face UConn in the Jimmy V Classic, while the Huskies themselves find their top-10 position threatened for the first time in nearly a year due to injuries. Princeton has made a notable entrance into the Top 25 for the second consecutive year.
The Tigers, having previously been ranked in the preseason last year before falling out, managed to secure a victory against Oklahoma before ultimately succumbing to Indiana. This season, their only other loss came in a close three-point defeat against UCLA. This marks the third consecutive year that Princeton has earned a spot in the rankings. Marquette also made a significant jump in the rankings, claiming the 23rd spot. Their victories over Boston College and Arkansas propelled them into the Top 25, marking their return after a successful run at the Battle 4 Atlantis tournament. Unfortunately, Washington State and Oklahoma were unable to maintain their positions in the rankings this time around.
How high has USC climbed in the AP women’s basketball poll?
USC has reached its highest ranking in 29 years, securing the sixth spot in the AP women’s basketball poll.
Who is the standout player contributing to USC’s success?
Juju Watkins has been instrumental in USC’s rise in the rankings, matching the school record for freshmen with three 30-point-plus games.
Which team remains the unanimous No. 1 in the AP poll?
The South Carolina Gamecocks continue to dominate as the unanimous No. 1 team in the AP women’s basketball poll.
Which teams complete the top five rankings?
UCLA, Stanford, Iowa, and N.C. State round out the top five rankings in the AP women’s basketball poll.
Which teams had notable victories in recent holiday tournaments?
UCLA achieved a historic win over UConn for the first time in school history, while Stanford and Iowa enjoyed successful runs in holiday tournaments.
Which team went from being unranked to claiming the fifth spot in the preseason poll?
N.C. State defied expectations by going from unranked in the preseason poll to securing the fifth spot in the AP women’s basketball poll.
Who made a significant entrance into the Top 25 rankings?
Princeton entered the Top 25 for the second consecutive year, solidifying their presence in the college basketball landscape.
Which team returned to the rankings after a successful tournament run?
Marquette returned to the rankings at No. 23 after their victories over Boston College and Arkansas at the Battle 4 Atlantis tournament.
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