Mason earns spot in Top 25

After completing the regular season with a 15-game winning streak including victories this past week over Northeastern and at Georgia State, the George Mason men’s basketball team cracked the Top 25 on Monday for the first time in five years. Mason is ranked 25th in the latest ESPN/USA Today Coaches Poll with 70 total votes.

The last time the Patriots entered the Top 25 of the Coaches Poll during the regular season was Feb. 20, 2006, when Mason ranked 25th. That team went on to the Final Four and finished the season ranked eighth in the Coaches Poll after the historic postseason run.

“We are pleased that the ESPN/USA Today Coaches poll has recognized our George Mason men’s basketball program as one of the Top 25 teams in the country this week,” said head coach Jim Larranaga. “This was a goal our players set for themselves and one I know they are very happy to achieve. We now look forward to the challenges ahead at this weekend’s CAA tournament and beyond.”

In the latest Associated Press poll, the Patriots narrowly missed the top 25 as they received 120 votes, good for 26th place. The Patriots had received votes in both polls for the last three weeks, including 55 votes good for 26th place in the Coaches Poll and 51 votes in the AP Poll which ranked 27th.

Mason has won 15 straight games, tops in the nation, and has set a new school record with 25 regular season wins. The Patriots’ mark of 16-2 in conference play matches a league record originally set by the 2006-07 VCU squad.

Mason, the top seed in the Colonial Athletic Association Championship, will take on the winner of Friday’s UNC Wilmington/Georgia State game on Saturday at noon. The game will be televised live on The Comcast Network and syndicated locally on GMU-TV.

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