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February 4, 2013
Indiana back at No. 1
Thanks to a Saturday night win over previously top-ranked Michigan, Indiana is back at No. 1 in both the newly released Associated Press and USA Today coaches polls. The Hoosiers return after holding the top spot for the first six weeks of the season.
Indiana (20-2) was No. 3 in last week's Associated Press poll and leapfrogs both Michigan and No. 2 Kansas, a Saturday loser at home to Oklahoma State. The Hoosiers received 58 of the 65 first place votes from the Associated Press voters and 25 of the 31 top spot votes from the Coaches Poll. Florida (18-2) was No. 2 in both polls and the only other program to receive first place votes.
Rounding out the top five in both polls are Michigan, Duke and Kansas.
This is the fifth straight week that a different team has occupied the top spot.
Here is the complete top 10 for both polls with first place votes in parentheses.
The Big Ten landed four teams in the Coaches Poll top 10 and five overall in the top 25 as Minnesota is ranked No. 18 in both polls.
For full polls: Yahoo Sports
Indiana dropped from the top spot to No. 6 following a December 15th overtime loss to Butler. The Hoosiers fell to No. 6 that week and the lowest the Hoosiers were ranked was No. 7 in the January 21st poll following a loss at home to Wisconsin. The last time Indiana spent this many consecutive weeks in the top 10 was the 1992-93 season.
Following the win over Michigan, senior Jordan Hulls spoke about returning to No. 1.
"It's great for us to get back to that spot," said Hulls. "We're excited about it. But we know what we have to do, which is what we've been doing the whole year, go back to practice and keep getting better every day."
Saturday's victory marked the second time in two seasons that the Hoosiers have knocked off the top-ranked team in Assembly Hall. The game this weekend also was the first ever battle in the building between two teams ranked among the top three in the country.
Indiana coach Tom Crean addressed the expected return to the top spot after the big win.
"They truly are learning that those things are nice, but the playing to improve, playing to be good enough to win a game like this, be able to make adjustments, to be able to play through some mistakes and deal with some adversity and grow up in the games, that's what is most important," said Crean.
"I don't get the sense that these guys are locked into those rankings at all because when we were number one in mid-December they know what was said---I mean they can feel all that. Were we any worse because we lost by two? We didn't play that great that day. It wasn't like the sky was falling, and we had to come in here and make sure they understood that."
This is the 51st time that Indiana has been ranked No. 1 in the Associated Press poll since that it began in 1949. That's the seventh most of all time.