By Chad Waller, NAIA Director of Communications & Sports Information
KANSAS CITY, Mo. – On a nine-game win streak, Pikeville (Ky.) sticks at No. 1 for the second-straight week in the 2013 - 14 NAIA Division I Men’s Basketball Coaches’ Top 25, announced by the national office Tuesday. The Bears collected nine-of-10 first-place votes en route to 250 total points in the third regular-season edition.
Pikeville ranks No. 1 in Division I with a +28.9 scoring margin and is third in scoring offense (95.6). In seven of their last eight contests, the Bears have defeated their opponent by at least 14 points. On Thursday, Pikeville travels to No. 18 Georgetown (Ky.) for a showdown in the Mid-South Conference -- the Bears are the only undefeated team in league play, while Georgetown is two games back.
Holding steady at No. 2 is SAGU (Texas) with 242 points. Currently, the Lions are the only Sooner Athletic Conference team with a 6-0 circuit mark. They look ahead to John Brown (Ark.) on Thursday and on the road Saturday at No. 11 St. Gregory's (Okla.).
No. 3 Cal State San Marcos stands with 232 points. With a 19-1 overall record, the Cougars move up one position this week after an 84-81 road win at then-No. 5 Concordia (Calif.) on Jan. 10 in the NAIA Division I Men's Basketball Game of the Week. Cal State San Marcos is second in Division I with a 10-game win streak.
Earning the final first-place vote, Columbia (Mo.) sits at No. 4 with 226 points. On Saturday, the Cougars are scheduled to travel to No. 6 Freed-Hardeman (Tenn.).
No. 5 Evangel (Mo.) rounds out the top-five with 210 points. The Crusaders hold a one-game edge in the Heart of America Athletic Conference prior to their affair against Baker (Kan.) on Saturday.
No. 14 St. Catharine (Ky.) improved nine positions, which is the best improvement within the Top 25 from last week. Conversely, No. 10 Concordia and No. 18 Georgetown both slid down five spots for the worst fall.
No. 24 Wayland Baptist (Texas) is one of five newcomers and is making the biggest impression. Before this week, the Pioneers were last ranked on March 5, 2008 when they were No. 22. They have gone 8-1 in their last nine games and stand 12-2 on the season.
Meanwhile, rookies No. 19 Westminster (Utah) and No. 22 (tie) Lewis-Clark State (Idaho) held a position at least once during the 2012-13 campaign. No. 16 (tie) Emmanuel (Ga.) and No. 25 Hope International (Calif.) were both ranked previously this year.
Rocky Mountain (Mont.) (No. 10), Montana State-Northern (No. 15), Martin Methodist (Tenn.) (No. 20), John Brown (Okla.) (No. 22) and Faulkner (Ala.) (No. 25) all fell out this week.
All 10 conferences and independents are represented in this week's poll. The Golden State Athletic Conference and Sooner Athletic Conference lead all leagues with four teams apiece. Three other conferences land a trio of teams in the Top 25.
The poll was voted upon by a panel of head coaches representing each of the conference and unaffiliated groups. The fourth regular-season Top 25 Poll will be announced on Jan. 21. For more information on the polls, click here.
NOTES: (All information dates back to 2000 – 01 season) The Golden State Athletic Conference (GSAC) and American Midwest Conference (AMC) each place two teams within the top 10 -- No. 4 Columbia (Mo.) and No. 6 Freed-Hardeman (Tenn.) out of the AMC and No. 7 Arizona Christian and No. 10 Concordia (Calif.) out of the GSAC... Pikeville (Ky.) captures its third all-time No. 1 ranking this week... Pikeville is joined by Georgetown (Ky.) and Columbia (Mo.) as the teams to hold the No. 1 spot this year... The only undefeated team in Division I is No. 6-ranked Freed-Hardeman at 11-0, which also is good for the longest win streak in Division I... Through four polls (including Preseason), there have been 40 different teams ranked... Preseason No. 1 and defending national champion Georgetown looks to become the first team since Oklahoma City in 2008 to be the Preseason No. 1 and win the national championship in the same season -- the Tigers fell down to No. 18 this week... Last year, five programs earned the No. 1 ranking: Georgetown, Columbia, Concordia, Cumberlands (Ky.) and Oklahoma Baptist... Xavier (La.) leads the active group of being ranked with 28-straight mentions, followed by Columbia at 26, Evangel (Mo.) at 18, Cal State San Marcos at 17 and Pikeville at 17… Since the 2000 – 01 season, 25 different teams have held the No. 1 ranking, with eight of those programs having five-or-more listings on top of the charts…Former NAIA member Mountain State (W.Va.) leads this group with 48 No. 1 rankings, followed by Robert Morris (Ill.) with 24... Concordia and Georgetown are next with 12 and Columbia is at nine mentions… Robert Morris, now a NAIA Division II member in the Chicagoland Collegiate Athletic Conference (CCAC), is the only program to start and end a season ranked No. 1, doing so during the 2006 – 07 season... A conference change this year saw the CCAC move to NAIA Division II.
2013 – 14 NAIA Division I Men’s Basketball Coaches’ Top 25 Poll – Jan. 14
|RANK||LAST WEEK||SCHOOL (1ST PLACE VOTES)||2013-14 RECORD||TOTAL POINTS|
|1||1||Pikeville (Ky.) (9)||14-1||250|
|3||4||Cal State San Marcos||19-1||232|
|4||3||Columbia (Mo.) (1)||15-1||226|
|9||9||William Carey (Miss.)||9-2||185|
|11||12||St. Gregory's (Okla.)||13-1||174|
|14||23||St. Catharine (Ky.)||10-5||136|
|T16||17||Philander Smith (Ark.)||12-5||123|
|21||18||Mid-America Christian (Okla.)||8-4||93|
|T22||NR||Lewis-Clark State (Idaho)||16-4||77|
|24||NR||Wayland Baptist (Texas)||12-2||64|
|25||RV||Hope International (Calif.)||12-3||52|
Others receiving votes: Rocky Mountain (Mont.) 46; Bethel (Tenn.) 46; Rio Grande (Ohio) 34; Martin Methodist (Tenn.) 29; MidAmerica Nazarene (Kan.) 15; Montana State-Northern 15; LSU Shreveport (La.) 5; Cumberland (Tenn.) 3.