Cats crack AP Top 10, latest poll boosts NCAA resume

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Kentucky moved back into the Associated Press Top 10 and is ranked No. 9 in the newest Top 25 released Monday.

The Wildcats (24-5, 14-2 Southeastern Conference) are ranked below instate rival Louisville, which is No. 8 in the poll. In addition to moving back into the Top 10 for the first time since climbing as high as No. 4 earlier this year, the latest ranking boosts UK’s NCAA Tournament resume.

Three of UK’s losses this season – all by single digits – were to No. 1 Kansas, No. 3 UCLA and No. 8 Louisville. Kentucky owns wins over fifth-ranked North Carolina and No. 12 Florida. The Wildcats’ only double-digit setback of the season was an 88-66 setback at Florida earlier this month.

Kentucky is now listed as a No. 2 seed in the Joe Lunardi’s latest NCAA Bracketology rankings released Monday. Kentucky is listed as the No. 2 seed in the Midwest Region, behind top-seeded Kansas.

Honors for Bam

Kentucky freshman forward Bam Adebayo was named SEC Freshman of the Week for the first time this season, the league office announced Monday. Adebayo averaged 20 points and 15 rebounds per game in wins over Missouri and Florida last week.

Adebayo said the win over Florida gave the Wildcats a boost going into the final week of the regular season.

“It builds our confidence (and) it builds coach Cal’s confidence,” he said. “We are going to the tournament, you know, looking forward.”

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