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5 Big Ten hoops teams in Top 25

Indianhead coach Tom Crean right reacts after Indiandefeated Ohio State 74-70 an NCAA college basketball game Saturday Dec. 31 2011

Indiana head coach Tom Crean, right, reacts after Indiana defeated Ohio State 74-70 in an NCAA college basketball game Saturday, Dec. 31, 2011, in Bloomington, Ind. (AP Photo/Darron Cummings)

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1 Indiana (21) 27-9

2 Louisville (5) 30-10

3 Kentucky (5) 38-2

4 Ohio State 31-8

5 Michigan 24-10

6 North Carolina State 24-13

7 Kansas 32-7

8 Duke 27-7

9 Syracuse 34-3

10 Florida 26-11

11 Arizona 23-12

12 North Carolina 32-6

13 UCLA 19-14

14 Michigan State 29-8

15 Creighton 29-6

16 Memphis 26-9

17 Missouri 30-5

18 Baylor 30-8

19 UNLV 26-9

20 San Diego State 26-8

21 Wisconsin 26-10

22 Gonzaga 26-7

23 Notre Dame 22-12

24 (tie) Florida State 25-10

24 (tie) Texas 20-14

Others receiving votes: Saint Louis (26-8) 58; Virginia Commonwealth (29-7) 40; Cincinnati (26-11) 33; Murray State (31-2) 30; Kansas State (22-11) 13; Saint Mary’s (27-6) 11; New Mexico (28-7) 10; Tennessee (19-15) 10; Minnesota (23-15) 9; Pittsburgh (22-17) 9; Marquette (27-8) 8; Stanford (26-11) 7; Butler (22-15) 6; Oklahoma State (15-18) 6; Colorado State (20-12) 4; Middle Tennessee (27-7) 3; Drexel (29-7) 2; Georgia (15-17) 2; Miami (Fla.) (20-13) 2; St. Joseph’s (20-14) 2; Marshall (21-14) 1.

The USA TODAY Sports Board of Coaches is made up of 31 head coaches at Division I institutions. All are members of the National Association of Basketball Coaches. The board for the 2012-13 season: Tommy Amaker, Harvard; Tevester Anderson, Jackson

Updated: October 18, 2012 10:17AM

By definition, pre-season polls are speculative ventures. But they are a measure of expectations, and Indiana is expected to be ready to contend for championships again.

The Hoosiers hold the No.1 position in the preseason USA TODAY Sports men’s basketball coaches poll, claiming 21 of 31 first-place votes for its first top ranking since the end of the 1992-93 regular season. IU coach Tom Crean seems ready for the challenge that comes with being No.1.

“I think it’d be crazy to try to shy away from it,” he told USA TODAY Sports. “If we were, our kids would look at us and roll their eyes. We don’t talk about it much. We talk about living up to the standards that we need to live up to on a daily basis to have it that way at the end of the year.

“I think it says a lot about our fan base and how they’ve stuck with us.”

Louisville holds the No. 2 spot, its highest preseason ranking since USA TODAY began administering the coaches poll in 1991. Defending NCAA champion Kentucky will start the campaign at No. 3. The Cardinals and Wildcats each picked up five No. 1 votes.

Indiana heads a group of five Big Ten teams in the top 25, the most for any conference. That includes three in the top five with Ohio State checking in at No. 4 and Michigan No. 5. Michigan State is 14th and Wisconsin is No. 21.

North Carolina State begins at No.6, its highest position in any coaches poll since its association with USA TODAY Sports. The Wolfpack were also chosen as the preseason favorite in the Atlantic Coast Conference as chosen by league coaches, an honor usuallly bestowed on Duke or North Carolina in recent years. The Blue Devils appear at No. 8 with the Tar Heels 12th. Also representing the ACC is Florida State, tied for 24th with Texas.

No. 7 Kansas heads a group of three ranked teams from the Big 12, with Baylor at No. 18 in addition to Texas. The Pac-12, after being shut out of the top 25 at the end of last season, has two heading into the season with Arizona starting out 11th and UCLA No. 13.

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