Caitlin Clark and Iowa climbed back to No. 2 in The Associated Press Top 25 women’s basketball poll Monday as the star guard moved within striking distance of the NCAA career scoring record.
It’s the second time in a few weeks that the Hawkeyes have been second in the poll, a spot that hasn’t been kind to teams the past month. UCLA, Iowa and Kansas State all took turns in the second position since Jan. 8 and none of the schools could hold that ranking for more than a week at a time.
While No. 2 has been a revolving door lately, South Carolina has maintained a strong grip atop the poll, once again the unanimous No. 1 team from a 35-member national media panel.
The Gamecocks (21-0) will host Missouri and No. 11 UConn this week. Dawn Staley’s squad will play those games without star center Kamilla Cardoso, who left for a week to play with the Brazilian national team at an Olympic qualifying tournament.
Iowa has held the No. 2 spot twice before this season, including the week of Jan. 15 when the Hawkeyes lost to Ohio State.
Clark, who is only 66 points away from becoming the leading scorer in NCAA women’s basketball history, will try and make it a longer stay this time around. She will lead the Hawkeyes against Penn State and Nebraska this week with Kelsey Plum’s record in view.
No. 3 North Carolina State, No. 4 Colorado and No. 5 Ohio State followed Iowa. It’s the Buckeyes’ best ranking this season.
Stanford fell two spots to sixth after losing to JuJu Watkins and USC. The phenomenal freshman scored 51 points in that game.
Texas vaulted up five places to seventh after beating Baylor and then-No. 2 Kansas State last week. The Wildcats fell to eighth after also losing to Oklahoma, which entered the poll at No. 24. UCLA was ninth and USC climbed five spots to 10th.