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Gonzaga climbs back into the AP Poll, up to 18th in Coaches

Gonzaga's pair of holiday season BCS victories have netted them some great results in this weeks Associated Press and Coaches Poll.  After dropping out of the AP Poll last week due to some late Duke reactions, the Zags have vaulted up to 19th as we enter conference play.

For their efforts, the Bulldogs have also crept up in the Coaches Poll from 22nd to 18th.

I really have no qualms with where GU is ranked this week.  I do expect there to be quite a bit of variance when I do my weekly Rushing the Polls piece as I'm sure many voters are still a bit wary of this team after the Duke game and nearly blowing a 21 point advantage against Illinois.  That being said, I'm sure many were impressed with the team's resolve as they stormed back to outlast Illinois in overtime in front of a very intense Illinois crowd at the United Center.

Gonzaga's best chance to further impress the voters might be this weekend/next week as they'll take on their biggest competition in the conference on the road as they travel to Portland and St. Mary's.  The Gaels are still receiving some votes in the Coaches Poll and everyone is aware of Portland's veteran-heavy roster.

Gonzaga's only remaining big nonconference opponent is Memphis and after a loss to Tennessee, they are no longer receiving votes in either poll. 

Former Gonzaga opponents Duke (5th in AP), Michigan State (10th), and Wisconsin (17th) are still solidly in both polls and Cincinnati and Wake Forest are still receiving votes in each poll.