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February 3, 2014

Unranked: Badgers' slide continues





MADISON, Wis. - After 19 consecutive weeks in the AP Top 25, the Wisconsin Badgers (17-5, 4-5) are on the outside looking in as they find themselves unranked at the halfway point in the Big Ten season.

The Badgers were ranked No. 20 in the preseason poll and climbed as high as No. 3 during their school-best 16-0 start to the season. With losses in five of their previous six outings, the Badgers are now unranked. After being ranked No. 14 last week, Wisconsin received a mere 79 votes in the poll. Bo Ryan's crew is 31 votes shy of No. 25 Pittsburgh.

The plummeting in the poll means that for the eighth consecutive season the Badgers have gone at least one week unranked after being ranked all 19 weeks of the poll in three of the previous five seasons (2000-01, 2003-04, 2006-07).

Joining the Badgers as teams falling outside of the Top 25 is fellow Big Ten foe Ohio State (17-5, 4-5), which dropped from No. 24 to No. 27 with 45 AP votes.

With an out-of-conference loss to an unranked Georgetown team, No. 9 Michigan State (19-3, 8-1) dropped two spots in this week's poll. Despite a loss to Indiana on Sunday, No. 10 Michigan (16-5, 8-1) did not fall in the poll thanks in large part to a 75-66 win against Purdue earlier in the week.

No. 17 Iowa (17-5, 7-3) fell two spots to bring the Big Ten total to just three teams in this week's poll after posting five teams in the previous two weeks. The Big Ten now ranks fourth among conferences in Top 25 representation. The Big 12 stayed on top with five teams represented in the poll and the ACC (Atlantic Coast Conference) and AAC (American Athletic Conference) come in tied for second with four teams.

No. 10 Michigan visits No. 17 Iowa on Saturday in one of four games this week nation-wide between ranked teams.

For more Wisconsin Badgers news, notes and discussion, follow Zack on Twitter.


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