21st last week, Terps drop out of Top 25 poll

February 08, 1994|By Don Markus

COLLEGE PARK -- The University of Maryland basketball team dropped out of the Associated Press Top 25 as a result of last week's losses to Virginia and Georgia Tech.

The Terrapins, who ended more than an eight-year absence when they made it to No. 25 three weeks ago, got as high as 18th before dropping back to No. 21 last week.

Maryland coach Gary Williams said he was not surprised that the 12-6 Terps were not included among the nation's Top 25 teams, but that no Atlantic Coast Conference team besides No. 1 North Carolina and No. 2 Duke was.

"You can't tell me that no other ACC team should be in the Top 25," said Williams, whose Terps received 41 votes, the third most among teams not in the AP poll. "The thing that makes it tough is that teams in this league knock each other out. I don't know how many of those other teams would stay up there if they played in the ACC."

Asked if it might be easier for his young team not be ranked, Williams said: "What happened to us is that it was such a sudden thing. It became a popular story nationally. A player like Joe Smith got more attention than any player in the country for two weeks. It can cost you some concentration."

It is likely to be a difficult week for Maryland. Trying to end a three-game ACC losing streak, the Terps start a two-game road trip Thursday in Chapel Hill, N.C., against the top-ranked Tar Heels before going to Florida State, which beat Virginia by 36 points Sunday, on Saturday.

North Carolina, which started the preseason No. 1 after winning last year's national championship, became the sixth team to take over the top spot in as many weeks.

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