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January 31, 2007

Power Rankings: Wisconsin's Ryan moves to top

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Alando Tucker's coach has joined him atop the Rivals.com College Basketball Power Rankings.

The best start in the history of Wisconsin basketball has made Bo Ryan the new No. 1 head coach in the power rankings, which measure the nation's top players and coaches at each position.

Ryan moved ahead of UCLA's Ben Howland, whose Bruins lost 75-68 to Stanford on Sunday.

Wisconsin heads into Wednesday's game at Indiana with a 21-1 record that includes a perfect 7-0 mark in Big Ten play. The second-ranked Badgers defeated Iowa 57-46 on Sunday for their 17th consecutive victory.

Tucker shot 11-of-14 and scored 27 points in the Iowa game to maintain his status as the top small forward in our power rankings.

The only change atop the player rankings came as a result of injury.

Tennessee guard Chris Lofton has a sprained right ankle and is expected to miss his third consecutive game Wednesday against Georgia. Because the rules of our power rankings indicate a player who misses at least a week of action must drop off the charts, Lofton doesn't appear in the rankings this week.

UCLA's Arron Afflalo replaced Lofton as the nation's No. 1 shooting guard. Afflalo averages 17.1 points per game and has scored in double figures in each of his last 19 contests.

Players remaining atop the power rankings included Marquette point guard Dominic James, Oklahoma State power forward Mario Boggan and Ohio State center Greg Oden.

Oregon point guard Aaron Brooks made one of the biggest moves up the charts. The Pac-10's leading scorer zoomed from the No. 8 spot to the No. 4 position among point guards after collecting 31 points and eight rebounds Saturday in a 77-74 overtime victory over Washington State.

Virginia's J.R. Reynolds, North Carolina's Wayne Ellington and Virginia Tech's Zabian Dowdell were other big risers. All three players moved into the top 10 in our rankings of shooting guards.

Reynolds has averaged 26.3 points per game during Virginia's four-game winning streak. Ellington shot 8-for-12 in a victory over Wake Forest and helped the Tar Heels destroy Arizona on the road. Dowdell scored 30 points in a win over Miami and 23 more in a victory over Georgia Tech.

We will update the rankings weekly throughout the rest of the season. For our purposes, the power rankings will reflect those games played Tuesday through Monday.

The rating of a player and coach can fluctuate each week, but the power rankings measure their overall careers as well as their most recent performances.

By the end of the season, our power rankings should provide an accurate indicator of which players were the best at their respective positions.

Click here to check out the complete Rivals.com College Basketball Power Rankings.

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