The Washington Times - November 30, 2009, 12:22AM

It’s usually a mild headache to put together an AP basketball ballot on Selection Sunday, since nearly everyone lost once in the week leading into it.

Of course, there’s 30 or so games of evidence to judge everyone on, so the shuffling usually isn’t too severe.

SEE RELATED:


But when 12 of the top 25 teams on a ballot lose in during Thanksgiving week, when there isn’t much to go by, that’s a problem.

Basiscally, this looks nothing like last week’s ballot. A bunch of teams lost two games, some of which (Michigan, Xavier and Maryland among them) disappeared from the picture. A few wins will bring them back, but for now there’s only so much of a track record for any team.

On the flip side, a couple good victories (here’s looking at you, Florida and Marquette and to a lesser extent Portland, since it would take a lot to define UCLA as “good” with a straight face right now) means a significant surge was quite possible.

And yes, I’m assuming Portland won’t erase a 15-point deficit in the final two minutes against West Virginia. The Pilots are good, but I don’t see Deron Williams, Dee Brown and Luther Head or Jason Williams, Carlos Boozer and Shane Battier on their roster.

With that said, here’s this week’s top 45, which I promise took a whole lot longer than it normally does to put together.

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

26. Cincinnati (4-1)
27. UNLV (5-0)
28. Memphis (3-1)
29. Louisville (4-1)
30. Kansas State (5-1)
31. Vanderbilt (4-1)
32. Minnesota (4-2)
33. Miami (7-0)
34. Butler (4-2)
35. Missouri State (5-0)
36. Wisconsin (4-1)
37. New Mexico (6-0)
38. Dayton (3-2)
39. Georgia Tech (4-1)
40. St. John’s (5-0)
41. Tulsa (5-1)
42. Virginia Commonwealth (4-1)
43. Northwestern (5-1)
44. South Carolina (5-1)
45. Pittsburgh (5-1)

Patrick Stevens