Win at Memphis ranks Racers
Posted: Tuesday, December 13, 2011 7:01 pm
The Murray State men’s basketball team entered the Associated Press rankings Monday at No. 24, according to the weekly polling of media members from across the nation.
Murray State (10-0) came home Sunday evening with a 76-72 win at then-No. 21 Memphis, which marked the Racers’ first win over a ranked opponent in the regular season in 14 years.
“Our start has been a blessing,” MSU head coach Steve Prohm said. “Our guys are very locked in. Our job as a staff is to keep our guys humble and focused on the task at hand. That’s all our focus needs to be, on Thursday’s game against Lipscomb.”
The ranking for Murray State marks the first time to be ranked in the AP since the end of the 1997-98 season when the Racers entered the NCAA Tournament ranked No. 25 with a 29-3 record under coach Mark Gottfried.
Murray State’s 10-0 start is the best start for the program since the 1950-51 team and 1936-37 team each started 12-0. MSU is one of only nine undefeated teams remaining in NCAA D-I.
The 10-0 start for Prohm marks the best start in the history of the MSU program for a rookie coach. Prohm is MSU’s 15th coach and the program is in its 87th season.
The Racers continued to receive votes in the ESPN/USA Today Coaches Poll and were ranked 27th.
MSU jumped from 10th to second in the CollegeInsider Mid-Major Top-25 with five first-place votes behind top-ranked Creighton, which had 21 first-place votes.
The Racers now eye a three-game homestand when they host Lipscomb at the CFSB Center on Thursday. MSU stays home Saturday with a game against Arkansas State and then begins its quest for a third straight Ohio Valley Conference title by hosting UT Martin on Dec. 21. All three games tip at 7 p.m.
Murray State is one of four teams new to the poll this week.
Indiana made the biggest leap into the Top 25, entering for the first time this season at No. 18 following its buzzer-beating win against then-No. 1 Kentucky. The Hooisers are 9-0.
Michigan State is ranked No. 21 after not being included last week, while Vanderbilt jumped back in at No. 25, tied with Creighton.
Syracuse took advantage of losses by Kentucky and Ohio State to take over the No. 1 ranking.
The Buckeyes stayed at No. 2, while the Wildcats fell to third. Published in The Messenger 12.13.11