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Former No. 1 UCLA climbs back into top 5; UNC holds steady at No. 1

Former No. 1 UCLA (11-1) is working its way back up the ESPN/USA Today's men's basketball poll thanks mostly to the misfortunes of others.

Losses by Georgetown and Texas helped propel the Bruins, who logged wins over Western Illinois and Michigan, from No. 5 to No. 8. UCLA held top billing in the Nov. 26 poll but plummeted all the way to eighth with a loss to the then-No. 8 Longhorns.

Georgetown, which was defeated by No. 2 Memphis on Saturday, fell from No. 4 to No. 8. Texas, meanwhile, slipped from fifth to ninth after being knocked off by then-No. 10 Michigan State.

Washington State, now 11-0, also benefited at the expense of the Hoyas and Longhorns. The Cougars moved up two spots from No. 6 to No. 4, their highest ranking in school history.

The top three teams remain the same, with North Carolina holding steady at the top for the fourth straight week.

The Tar Heels, who improved to 11-0 with defeats of Nicholls State and UC Santa Barbara, received 23 of 31 first-place votes. Unbeatens Memphis (10-0) and Kansas (12-0) round out the top three.

Joining Georgetown and Texas in the second five were Pitt (11-0) at No. 6, Michigan State (11-1) at No. 7 and Duke (10-1) in tenth.

Gonzaga, Oregon and Xavier dropped out of the poll while West Virginia (10-1) made the cut at No. 23, undefeated Mississippi (11-0) climbed into the 24th spot, and Rhode Island (11-1) made its debut at No. 25.

The top 10 teams in The Associated Press poll mirrored the ESPN/USA Today rankings.