Houston maintains lead in men's basketball poll

Houston stays ahead: The Houston Cougars continue to dominate the men's college basketball scene, holding first place in the USA TODAY Sports men's basketball coaches poll for the second consecutive week. With 28 of 32 first-place votes, the Cougars lead the standings, showing their strength on the court. Although the victory over Oklahoma was close, with a game-winning shot by Jamal Shead, Houston continues to show why it deserves its leadership position.

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Stability in the top 5: The first five teams in the survey remain without significant changes. Connecticut holds firm in second place, closely followed by Purdue, which received the remaining first-place vote. Tennessee and Arizona round out the top 5, ensuring an exciting competition in the upcoming games.

Challenges for Kansas and Marquette: On the other hand, Marquette and Kansas experienced drops in the rankings after facing difficulties on the court. Marquette fell four spots after a loss against Creighton, while Kansas suffered a six-spot drop, marking its lowest position of the season so far.

Highlights and surprises: Illinois stands out as the team that advanced the most in the poll this week, moving up four spots. Meanwhile, Kansas faces its worst ranking in years, reflecting the challenges the team faces this season. Brigham Young returned to the poll after a week away, while Florida had to drop out after a series of losses.

 As the games progress and the NCAA tournament approaches, the rankings continue to fluctuate, showing the intensity and unpredictability of men's college basketball. With teams like Houston leading the way and others fighting to stay on top, the sports landscape promises excitement and surprises in the weeks to come.