KANSAS CITY, Mo. - Courtesy of an undefeated 14-0 record, Oklahoma Baptist moves into the No. 1 position in the third regular-season edition of the 2011 - 12 NAIA Division I Men's Basketball Coaches' Top 25 Poll, the NAIA announced Monday. The Bison own the top spot for the first time since Dec. 10, 2002. Oklahoma Baptist earned 11 first-place votes and 312 total points. The Bison replace former No. 1 Concordia (Calif.), who lost on Jan. 7, 83-68, to then-No. 15 Biola (Calif.).
Shorter (Ga.) improves two positions to No. 2 with 298 total points and one first-place nod. The undefeated Hawks are 14-0 for the first time in program history. Falling one spot to third is Robert Morris (Ill.) with 295 points. Concordia slides down to No. 4 and Georgetown skips up to No. 5, one position better than the Dec. 12 edition.
The Bison lead the rugged Sooner Athletic Conference (SAC) with a 7-0 record. Three teams in the SAC are ranked, while two others are in the "receiving votes" category. Oklahoma Baptist is strong on both sides with a top ranking statistically in scoring defense (56.1 ppg) and field goal percentage offense (.526).
No. 13 Montana State-Northern and No. 17 Our Lady of the Lake (Texas) highlight the biggest movers with six-spot jumps from the last poll. The Lights have won nine-straight contests and Our Lady of the Lake is 8-0 after a slow 2-3 start.
No. 24 Cal State San Marcos jumps into the poll for the first time in school history. The Cougars are in their first season of varsity competition and are 11-6 on the season. They earned a notable victory, 90-66, against then-No. 2 Robert Morris on Dec. 29. Newcomers No. 23 Montana-Western and No. 21 Lee (Tenn.) are in the poll for the first time since last season, while No. 16 The Master's (Calif.) is mentioned for the first time since Feb. 8, 2010 (No. 16).
The Golden State Athletic Conference (GSAC) headlines all of the conferences and unaffiliated groups with a high of four ranked programs. The GSAC is represented by Concordia, No. 7 Azusa Pacific (Calif.), The Master's and No. 20 Biola. The Mid-South Conference, SAC and Southern States Athletic Conference each landed a trio of programs among the Top 25.
The poll was voted upon by a panel of head coaches representing each of the conference/independent/unaffiliated groups. The fourth regular-season Division I Men's Basketball Coaches' Top 25 Poll will be announced on Jan. 16.
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NOTES: (All information dates back to 2000 - 01 season) Two teams remain undefeated in the NAIA, top-ranked Oklahoma Baptist and No. 2 Shorter (Ga.)... There have been 37 different teams to be ranked at some point this season... At least two teams have split the first-place votes in all four polls this year (including Preseason)... No. 11 Mountain State (W.Va.) boasts the longest active stretch of consecutive rankings with 137-straight weeks; No. 5 Georgetown (Ky.) is next with 69, followed by No. 6 Texas Wesleyan at 46 and Oklahoma Baptist at 41... Mountain State has the most No. 1 rankings since 2000 - the Cougars have been No. 1 a total of 48 times since 2000, which marks the highest total of any program in that span; No. 3 Robert Morris (Ill.) is second with 23 No. 1s and No. 4 Concordia (Calif.) follows with 10 mentions... Robert Morris is the only program to start and end a season ranked No. 1, doing so during the 2006 - 07 season.
|RANK||LAST WEEK^||SCHOOL (1ST PLACE VOTES)||2011-12 RECORD||TOTAL POINTS|
|1||3||Oklahoma Baptist (11)||14-0||312|
|2||4||Shorter (Ga.) (1)||15-0||298|
|3||2||Robert Morris (Ill.)||15-1||295|
|7||9||Azusa Pacific (Calif.)||13-2||248|
|8||5||Rogers State (Okla.)||13-2||241|
|9||8||Martin Methodist (Tenn.)||11-3||239|
|10||13||Southern Poly (Ga.)||12-2||221|
|11||11||Mountain State (W.Va.)||11-5||206|
|12||16||Southern Nazarene (Okla.)||12-3||191|
|14||18||Lindsey Wilson (Ky.)||11-4||183|
|16||NR||The Master's (Calif.)||12-3||149|
|17||23||Our Lady of the Lake (Texas)||10-3||133|
|24||NR||Cal State San Marcos||11-6||84|
|25||22||Saint Xavier (Ill.)||12-4||70|
Others receiving votes: Tougaloo (Miss.) 53; Columbia (Mo.) 49; Oklahoma City 46; Westmont (Calif.) 43; Pikeville (Ky.) 27; Westminster (Utah) 23; Cumberland (Tenn.) 19; SAGU (Texas) 9; MidAmerica Nazarene (Kan.) 6; St. Catharine (Ky.) 3; John Brown (Ark.) 1; Fresno Pacific (Calif.) 1; Baker (Kan.) 1; Oklahoma Christian 1; Wiley (Texas) 1; Science & Arts (Okla.) 1; Voorhees (S.C.) 1.
^ Indicated in Dec. 12, 2011 poll