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January 27, 2009

Coach K solidifies spot atop power rankings

Rivals.com Power Rankings: PG | SG | SF | PF | C | Freshman | Head Coach

The coach of the new top-ranked team in the nation already had earned the No. 1 spot in the Rivals.com College Basketball Power Rankings.

Duke's surge to the top of both major polls allowed Mike Krzyzewski to earn a fourth consecutive week as the No. 1 coach in the power rankings, which measure the nation's top performers at each position.

The Blue Devils trounced N.C. State 73-56 and drilled Maryland 85-44 to replace Wake Forest as the nation's top-ranked team. Wake Forest, which fell to fourth in the coaches' poll and sixth in The Associated Press poll after losing 78-71 to Virginia Tech last week, plays host to Duke on Wednesday.

Duke has been the nation's top-ranked team for 80 weeks since 1990 more than any program in the nation but this marks the first time the Blue Devils have been atop the rankings since March 13, 2006.

"It's the first time for this group," Krzyzewski said. "We talked about it last week: 'Just don't worry about anything. Let's just play.' And it's the same thing we'll tell them going into this next week.

"It's an honor, and it says that you're playing real well. You don't get anything from it except a big headline when you lose. For now, it's cool, and someone can say we're No. 1 for a little bit."

Krzyzewski wasn't the only person to maintain his No. 1 position in the power rankings. In fact, the latest edition of the power rankings features no changes at the top. Players staying atop their respective positions were Wake Forest point guard Jeff Teague, Kentucky shooting guard Jodie Meeks, Arizona State small forward James Harden, Oklahoma power forward Blake Griffin and North Carolina center Tyler Hansbrough. Georgetown forward Greg Monroe remained the nation's No. 1 freshman.

This week's edition of the power rankings takes into account all games through Sunday.

The power rankings of a player and coach can fluctuate each week during the season depending on how they fared the previous week, but the power rankings measure overall career performances as well as their most recent results. By the end of the season, our power rankings should provide an accurate indicator of which players and coaches were the best at their respective positions.

Rivals.com Power Rankings: PG | SG | SF | PF | C | Freshman | Head Coach

Steve Megargee is a national writer for Rivals.com. He can be reached at smegargee@rivals.com.

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