LEXINGTON, Ky. – The University of Kentucky women’s basketball team debuted in the USA Today/ESPN Top 25 Coaches Poll at No. 25 released Tuesday. It marks the Wildcats’ first ranking since a No. 24 position in the poll on Nov. 23, 2006.
“Anything that’s happening positive in the program that shows we’re maybe making some progress is good,” UK Hoops Coach Matthew Mitchell said. “It’s just not something we can really dwell on at this point in time. The ranking we want to be in is the top 64 and that’s the 64 teams that get invited to the NCAA Tournament. That’s where our focus is and a national ranking or poll will not get you there. You have to win a certain amount of games and that’s where our focus is.”
The last time Kentucky was ranked occurred in 2006 as the Wildcats spent four weeks in the ESPN/USA Today Coaches Top 25 poll. The Wildcats are one of five SEC teams ranked in the Top 25 along with Tennessee (No. 3), Georgia (No. 8), LSU (No. 19), and Vanderbilt (No. 20).
Kentucky is 14-3 overall, 2-2 in the Southeastern Conference after winning two of its last three games, including a 63-53 upset of No. 17/16 Vanderbilt last week and a resounding 88-63 win over Alabama on Sunday. The Wildcats are just two wins shy of last year’s total of 16 wins with back-to-back home games on the slate. The Cats are looking to extend their 12-game home win streak when they play host to Arkansas Thursday, Jan. 21 at 7 p.m. EST and Auburn, Sunday, Jan. 24 at 2 p.m. EST.