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Men's Basketball Ranked 16th in Nation

KANSAS CITY, Mo. – After debuting in the 2012 NABC/Division II men’s basketball poll at No. 24 in mid-February and climbing to 21st last week, the Anderson University men’s basketball team is ranked 16th in the nation in the latest NABC/Division II men’s basketball rankings, as released Tuesday afternoon.

Anderson (22-4, 17-1 SAC), the top seed in the upcoming South Atlantic Conference Tournament, carries an eight-game win streak into Wednesday night’s quarterfinal matchup with eighth-seeded Catawba after winning 15 of its last 16 regular-season contests.

The Trojans have secured their third consecutive 20-win season and have won 13 of their last 14 games, while recording the most regular-season league wins in SAC history.

Joining the Trojans in the top-25 is Lincoln Memorial, which slipped from 12th to 17th. 

For the seventh time this season, there was a change at the top of the rankings, as Bellarmine moved back to the top of the poll – its third appearance at No. 1 this year – heading into “Championship Week” at the NCAA Division II level.

Following West Liberty’s loss last week at Wheeling Jesuit, the Knights knocked off then-No. 8 Northern Kentucky to regain the top spot in the rankings that they had lost just a week ago. Bellarmine heads into the Great Lakes Valley Conference Tournament looking to win that event for the third consecutive year.

Colorado School of Mines, the top seed in the Rocky Mountain Athletic Conference Tournament, moved up one spot to No. 2 this week and Alabama-Huntsville, the No. 1 seed in the Gulf South Conference Tournament, also moved up a spot to third. West Liberty dropped to No. 4 with its loss, while Shaw rounds out the top five as it carries the nation’s longest winning streak of 20 games into the Central Intercollegiate Athletic Association Tournament.

The second five begins with the top two teams from the Lone Star Conference, Midwestern State and Tarleton State, followed by Christian Brothers, Indiana (Pa.) and Northern Kentucky, who remained in the top 10 despite the loss to Bellarmine last week.

Western Washington begins the second 10 at No. 11, with Metropolitan State, Southern Indiana, Kentucky Wesleyan and Alaska-Anchorage occupying the next four spots.  The No. 16 team this week is Anderson, then Lincoln Memorial, Northwest Missouri State, Missouri Southern and Indianapolis complete this week’s top 20.

The final five teams this week are Arkansas Tech, Charleston, District of Columbia, Franklin Pierce – who is in the top 25 for the first time since Feb. 26, 1996 -- and Seattle Pacific. 

The NCAA will release its third regional rankings of the 2011-12 season on Wednesday.

The NCAA will announce its 2012 tournament field Sunday night and the selections will be available beginning at 10:30 p.m. Eastern time on NCAA.com.

The Trojans are making their third consecutive weekly appearance in the poll since earning the No. 25 spot in early December, 2009. AU opened that campaign with three straight wins and their hottest start in school history at that time. The ranking marked the first time AU had climbed into the Top 25 poll since becoming a four-year institution in the nineties.


NABC/Division II Coaches Poll (Feb. 28, 2012)
   Record Points Pvs
 1.  Bellarmine, Ky. (8 first place votes) 24-2 200 2
 2. Colorado School of Mines 24-2 189 3
 3. Alabama-Huntsville 23-3 182 4
 4. West Liberty, W.Va. 26-2 177 1
 5. Shaw, N.C. 24-2 167 6
 6. Midwestern State, Texas 23-3 153 5
 7. Tarleton State, Texas 24-4 152 7
 8. Christian Brothers, Tenn. 21-5 137 11
 9. Indiana, Pa. 22-4 126 13
 10. Northern Kentucky 21-5 125 8
 11. Western Washington 25-4 123 14
 12. Metropolitan State, Colo. 22-5 111 15
 13. Southern Indiana 21-6 103 9
 14. Kentucky Wesleyan 21-6 84 19
 15. Alaska-Anchorage 21-5 82 20
 16. Anderson, S.C. 22-4 75 21
 17.  Lincoln Memorial, Tenn. 24-4 69 12
 18. Northwest Missouri State 21-5 58 16
 19. Missouri Southern 22-6 54 10
 20. Indianapolis, Ind. 19-7 39 20
 21. Arkansas Tech 21-5 36 17
 22. Charleston, W.Va. 23-5 30 25
 23. District of Columbia 22-4 23 18
 24. Franklin Pierce, N.H. 21-6 21 NR
 25. Seattle Pacific, Wash. 21-6 18 24  
 
Others receiving votes: Hillsdale (Mich.) 14, Florida Tech 12, Washburn (Kan.) 10, West Georgia 9, King (Tenn.) 7, Winona State (Minn.) 5, LIU-C.W. Post 3, South Carolina Aiken 3, Bemidji State (Minn.) 2, Bowie State (Md.) 1.

Dropped out: Winona State (22).


Records and previous rankings are through games of Feb. 26, 2012.  The final poll will be released on Tuesday, March 6.

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