Iowa State boasts highest preseason ranking ever in AP poll


Max Goldberg/Iowa State Daily

Senior forward Georges Niang dunks during Hilton Madness on Oct. 16 in the Hilton Coliseum. 

Max Dible

Almost two weeks prior to its opening game in the 2015-16 season, the ISU men’s basketball team has already accomplished a feat unprecedented in the program’s history. 

Iowa State opened as the No. 7 team in the country in the Associated Press’ initial poll of the season, the highest preseason ranking the Cyclones have ever garnered.

The projection marks only the fifth time in school history that Iowa State has opened the season in the AP top 25. The Cyclones entered the 1996-97 season as the No. 9 team in the country.

Iowa State is one of four Big 12 teams in the top 25, and one of three ranked in the top 10. The Cyclones are joined in the rankings by No. 4 Kansas, No. 8 Oklahoma and No. 22 Baylor.

North Carolina, led by former Kansas head coach Roy Williams, claimed the top spot in the poll, followed by No. 2 Kentucky and No. 3 Maryland. Duke rounded out the AP top 5 in fifth position.