Rebels slip one spot in AP basketball rankings to No. 21

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Sam Morris / Las Vegas Sun

UNLV guard Justin Hawkins looks back during a huddle in their game against Hawaii Saturday, Dec. 1, 2012 at the Thomas & Mack. UNLV won 77-63

UNLV Runnin' Rebel Khem Birch

UNLV forward Khem Birch soars to the hoop during the dunk contest at the team's First Look scrimmage Thursday, Oct. 18, 2012 at the Thomas & Mack. Launch slideshow »

The UNLV basketball team dropped one spot Monday in the Associated Press rankings and coaches’ poll, falling to No. 21 in the AP and No. 18 in the coaches' poll.

UNLV (8-1), which plays at 5 p.m. today at UTEP, won its lone game last week in a lopsided affair against Division-III La Verne.

New Mexico and San Diego State of the Rebels’ Mountain West Conference remained in the top 20 of each poll. New Mexico is No. 16 in the AP rankings and No. 17 in the coaches' poll. San Diego State is No. 18 in the AP rankings and No. 15 in the coaches' poll.

Duke is the nation’s new No. 1 team, receiving 62 of 65 first-place votes in the AP rankings. Indiana, the former top-ranked team fell to No. 6 in the AP rankings after losing last week to Butler in overtime.

After Duke, the top five in the AP rankings are: No. 2 Michigan (three first-place votes), No. 3 Syracuse, No. 4 Arizona and No. 5 Louisville. North Carolina, which UNLV plays Dec. 29, is ranked No. 23.

Oregon, which last month handed UNLV its lone loss, nearly cracked the top 25. The Ducks received 176 votes — 22 fewer than No. 25 N.C. State. Also, undefeated Wyoming (10-0) of the Mountain West Conference received 14 votes.

Ray Brewer can be reached at 990-2662 or [email protected]. Follow Ray on Twitter at twitter.com/raybrewer21.

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  1. how do they crush a team by 47 and move down two spots in both polls

  2. When that team you crushed was a Division III school. Meanwhile other teams (New Mexico and SDSU in particular) are playing a tougher schedule. FYI UNM is 10-0 also.

  3. they didnt lose, they shouldnt be moving down in the polls

  4. I don't see a problem with the 21st ranking. I think we're a top 25 team, and a mildly questionable top 20 team. Losing at home to Oregon, and not leaving the top 25 was charitable; winning at Cal was a good win that makes a top 25 justifiable. While our defense is starting to show more consistency, our offense is too manic depressive: equally stunning - either lethal or quack quack quack! I think what is much more impressive ranking, is the MWC's #2 ranking as a conference! Anyway, GO REBELS!!! peace, out.

  5. But again other teams also won, and against tougher competition no less. Take Butler knocking off Indiana for example.

    its not just about what we do, its also about what the others do. Especially the darlings. (sorry but UNLV is no darling in these pollsters' eyes)