Creighton moved up in both national polls Monday, cracking the top 10 in the USA Today coaches rankings.
The Bluejays (16-1) were a season-best 10th in the coaches poll after being ranked 11th the previous two weeks. It is the program's highest ranking in the coaches poll since a best-ever No. 9 rating on Jan. 20, 2003.
“It means a lot,” Creighton forward Doug McDermott said. “We've come a long way, and it's cool to see it finally paying off.
“But we're not satisfied with that at all. We want to keep working, and we know that we can be better than that.”
Creighton moved from 13th to 12th in the Associated Press poll. That's one spot above the season-high 11th the Bluejays were ranked on Nov. 26, and two spots behind the program's best AP ranking, which also came on Jan. 20, 2003.
Creighton has now been ranked in the AP poll in 23 of the 48 weeks Greg McDermott has been the head coach. Not that he's counting.
“I don't pay a lot of attention to it,” he said. “Six weeks from now, I hope we're No. 10 or right around there. Then, we would have accomplished something.
“It's obviously nice to be looked at in that light, especially for the coaches to look at us that way.”
Creighton did dip six spots in the NCAA RPI rankings, falling from 13th to 19th after wins over Drake and Missouri State.
The Bluejays continue to lead the nation in 3-point shooting, ranking first in both 3-point baskets per game (9.9) and percentage (.453). Creighton also is tied for first in winning percentage (.941) and is in the top 10 nationally in six other statistical categories.
The Bluejays are second in field-goal percentage (.522), sixth in assist-to-turnover ratio (1.53-to-1) and assists per game (18.2), ninth in points (1,357) and scoring margin (18.1) and 10th in scoring offense (79.8).
Individually, Grant Gibbs is fourth in assist-to-turnover ratio (4.26-to-1) and 27th in assists per game (5.76), while Doug McDermott is third in scoring (23.6 average), 26th in field-goal percentage (.570) and 40th in free-throw percentage (.873).
Three other Bluejays are in the top 100 nationally. Gregory Echenique is 84th in double-doubles (4); Ethan Wragge is 18th in 3-point percentage (.463) and 65th in 3-point baskets per game (2.59); and Austin Chatman is 67th in assist-to-turnover ratio (2.27-to-1) and 71st in assists per game (4.9). Echenique is shooting 67.6 percent from the field, but does not have enough baskets to meet the NCAA’s minimum of five field goals per game. He is 14 field goals shy of meeting the minimum.
Jones to undergo second procedure
Creighton guard Josh Jones will undergo a second surgical procedure Tuesday that could determine what additional treatment might be necessary with the heart issue that forced him to give up basketball.
Jones will undergo a radio frequency ablation, the same procedure he had on Dec. 19 in an attempt to correct his rapid heart rate. Dr. Douglas Ramos, Creighton's team physician, said Tuesday's procedure also will include some additional tests.
Jones underwent open-heart surgery to replace an infected valve in 2007 as a high school senior. He had not experienced any additional problems, either at Omaha Central or at Creighton, until he suffered an atrial flutter that caused him to pass out before the Bluejays' Dec. 6 game at Nebraska. Results of the Dec. 19 procedure led Jones to decide that his basketball career was over. He remains a member of the team, and is scheduled to graduate in May.