North Carolina's return to top ends Vols' stay at one week

Neither Sunday's victory over Kentucky, nor coach Bruce Pearl's stumping for Tennessee to remain No. 1 in the ESPN/USA Today men's basketball coaches' poll, swayed even one voter.

North Carolina made a return to the top spot in the Top 25 released Monday, leaving Tennessee to look back on its first No. 1 ranking in school history as a one-week wonder. For now, at least.

"That's college basketball," Vols superstar guard Chris Lofton said after a 63-60 win over Kentucky. "It's something we have to deal with and get over."

The Tar Heels (27-2) were the preseason No. 1 and spent the first 10 weeks of the regular season there until a two-point loss to Maryland on Jan. 19. They're back on top after receiving 19 of 31 first-place votes and 763 total points.

UCLA (26-3) received six first-place votes in its move from fourth to second in the rankings. Memphis (28-1) also received six first-place votes in holding steady at No. 3.

The Vols (26-3), who were No. 1 for a little more than 24 hours before Tuesday's 72-69 loss at then-No. 14 Vanderbilt, came in behind Memphis at No. 4. The Vols pinned the Tigers with their only loss, 66-62 on Feb. 23, to grab the No. 1 ranking away from Memphis.

Duke (25-3), fresh off coach Mike Krzyzewski's 800th career victory, received the No. 5 ranking and joined No. 6 Kansas (26-3), No. 7 Stanford (24-4) and No. 8 Wisconsin (24-4) in making a one-spot jump from the previous poll.

Texas (24-5), the Big 12 co-leader with the Jayhawks, fell from fifth to ninth after a surprising loss to Texas Tech. Georgetown (24-4) held its ground at No. 10 as it prepares for a winner-take-all game Saturday against Louisville (24-6) for the Big East regular-season championship. Both teams are 14-3 in the conference.

Atlantic 10 regular-season champion Xavier (25-4) kicked off the second 10, which is heavily popular by Big East teams. Butler (27-3), Louisville, which made a five-spot jump to 13th, Connecticut (23-6), Purdue (23-6), Vanderbilt (24-5), Indiana (24-5), Michigan State (23-6), Notre Dame (22-6) and Marquette (21-7).

The Hoosiers fell five spots after their 103-74 loss to Michigan State, Dan Dakich's first loss as IU's interim coach.

Rounding out the Top 25: Drake (25-4), Washington State (22-7), newcomer Gonzaga (23-6), Brigham Young (23-6) and newcomer Mississippi State (20-8). Gonzaga's victory over Saint Mary's knocked the Gaels out of the poll and put the Zags in first place in the WCC standings.

Kent State also fell out of the rankings.