The Washington Times - December 21, 2009, 11:13AM

You know the routine … only a modest shakeup given last week’s happenings.

If there’s a regret here, it’s that I didn’t send Tennessee straight from the top 10 to outside the top 25. Probably should have after the Volunteers laid a prodigious egg at Southern California on Saturday. That could be further accounted for on next week’s ballot. Just a warning.

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Otherwise, it’s still hard to sift through the accomplishments to date. Some teams have more losses but a far better schedule (hello, North Carolina). Some programs have just devoured chump after chump and have a big, shiny record to show for it.

So this top 45 … still not as in focus as I’d like it to be at this stage. Then again, it usually takes until New Year’s for things to fully shake out anyway.

This week’s top 45:

1. Kansas (10-0)
2. Texas (10-0)
3. Purdue (10-0)
4. Syracuse (11-0)
5. Kentucky (11-0)
6. West Virginia (8-0)
7. Duke (9-1)
8. Villanova (10-1)
9. Michigan State (9-2)
10. Kansas State (10-1)
11. North Carolina (8-3)
12. Mississippi (10-1)
13. Connecticut (7-2)
14. New Mexico (12-0)
15. Florida (8-2)
16. Ohio State (9-2)
17. Temple (9-2)
18. Wisconsin (8-2)
19. Georgetown (8-1)
20. Texas A&M (9-2)
21. Clemson (10-2)
22. Gonzaga (8-3)
23. Tennessee (8-2)
24. UNLV (10-1)
25. Texas Tech (9-1)

26. Washington (7-2)
27. Butler (8-3)
28. Northwestern (8-1)
29. St. John’s (9-1)
30. Wake Forest (8-2)
31. Dayton (8-2)
32. Florida State (10-2)
33. Missouri State (10-0)
34. Tulsa (9-1)
35. Miami (11-1)
36. Oklahoma State (9-1)
37. Brigham Young (10-1)
38. Baylor (8-1)
39. Memphis (7-2)
40. Northern Iowa (8-1)
41. Rhode Island (9-1)
42. UAB (10-1)
43. Minnesota (8-3)
44. Wichita State (10-1)
45. Seton Hall (8-1)

Patrick Stevens