WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind. (Purdue Sports) — The Purdue men’s basketball team was 1-of-4 Big Ten teams to be ranked in the USA Today Coaches poll released today.
The Boilermakers were ranked No. 21 in the preseason poll, ranking fourth among Big Ten teams. League rivals Michigan State (2nd), Minnesota (15th) and Northwestern (20th) were the other conference schools ranked in the top 25.
While not the official poll used for record purposes, this marks the third straight year that Purdue has been ranked in the preseason USA Today coaches poll. Two years ago, Purdue was ranked 24th in the initial poll, while last year’s team was ranked 15th.
Purdue has been ranked in 37 straight AP Top-25 polls, the seventh-longest active streak in America.
Duke was tabbed as the preseason No. 1-ranked team, followed by Michigan State, Kansas, Kentucky and Arizona to round out the top five. The rest of the top 10 is Villanova, Florida, Wichita State, North Carolina and West Virginia.
Purdue has the potential to play six of the nation’s top 20 teams as it could face Arizona (5th) and Villanova (6th) in the Battle 4 Atlantis. In addition to its Big Ten slate, Purdue will also face Louisville (16th) in the ACC / Big Ten Challenge.
Among other teams receiving votes, Purdue will face Butler (28th), Wisconsin (33rd), Maryland (34th), Michigan (37th) and SMU (41st / possible).
Purdue is the defending Big Ten champion, posting a 27-8 record a year ago while advancing to the NCAA Tournament Sweet 16. This year’s squad returns six of its top seven scorers, including four seniors that have been a part of 74 home wins over the last three years while boasting the best home record in the Big Ten during that span.