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Arizona men’s basketball cracks AP Top 25 after beating Wichita State, Michigan in Las Vegas

arizona-wildcats-mens-basketball-ap-top25-rankings-michigan-wolverines-las-vegas-tommy-lloyd-2021 Photo by Ethan Miller/Getty Images

Back to where it belongs.

The Arizona Wildcats are ranked 17th in the latest Associated Press Top 25 poll, their first national ranking since February 2020, after taking the Roman Main Event title in Las Vegas over the weekend. The UA beat Wichita State in overtime on Friday and followed that up with an 80-62 victory over then-No. 4 Michigan in Sunday’s championship game.

Michigan dropped to No. 20, for those scoring at home.

The UA hadn’t been ranked since late in the 2019-20 season when it was 18-7 heading into a weekend homestand against the Oregon schools. An overtime loss to Oregon began a run of four losses in five games, knocking the Wildcats out and far from being re-ranked.

The Wildcats had received votes in the preseason poll and the first weekly edition, though fewer after starting 2-0 than before playing.

“Arizona basketball earns everything it gets, and that’s the way we want it,” coach Tommy Lloyd said after the Michigan game. “We don’t want anything given to us.”

The UA is one of three Pac-12 teams in the Top 25. UCLA is No. 2 and USC is No. 24.

Arizona’s next game is Saturday at home against Sacramento State, but in December it has trips to play two ranked foes: Dec. 11 at No. 14 Illinois and Dec. 22 at No. 15 Tennessee.