Men’s Basketball: Owls re-enter AP Poll at No. 25

The FAU Owls have returned to the Associated Press Top 25 Poll after being left out last week.


Jaden Wiston

Sophomore guard Nicholas Boyd leading on the offensive end against Middle Tennessee on Jan. 26, 2023.

Cameron Priester, Sports Editor

After falling out the Associated Press Top 25 Poll last week, FAU men’s basketball (24-2, 14-1 C-USA) has re-entered at the 25th spot in the latest rankings released Monday afternoon. 

“Mindset is just keep getting better,” said sophomore guard Alijah Martin. “Just take care of what we can take care on the court, and continue to get better.”

The Owls debuted in the AP Poll for the first time in program history at #24 three weeks ago, before advancing to #21, and later to #19

Though, a week ago, FAU was left off the AP Poll after they had their 20-game winning streak broken in a 86-77 loss on the road to the University of Alabama at Birmingham Blazers (18-8, 9-6 C-USA) on Feb. 2.

Since then, the Owls have won three straight games; most recently, they took down the Louisiana Tech University Bulldogs in a 5-point overtime victory Saturday afternoon.

“The overall mindset of the team is honestly just to get back to how we were playing at the beginning of the season. More disciplined, more scrappy,” said junior guard Bryan Greenlee after the victory over Louisiana Tech. “We want to just continue to win honestly. Take it game by game and not look too far ahead.”

As they enter the home-stretch of the season with only five regular seasons left to be played, the Owls are still in position to make a run at the NCAA Tournament.

With Saturday’s victory, FAU still controls first place in the C-USA standings, two games ahead of the University of North Texas Mean Green (21-5, 12-3 C-USA). 

Winning the C-USA Conference Championship Tournament would earn them an automatic bid to “The Big Dance”. However, the Owls’ resume leaves them with one of the stronger arguments for an “at-large” bid than anyone in the country.

Not only do they have the best overall record in the entire country, they also lead the country in bench points per game (37.54), rank 13th in scoring margin (+20), and 20th in rebounding margin (+6).

With that resume, the Owls remain in several experts’ latest bracket predictions.

In his latest prediction, ESPN analyst Joe Lunardi has FAU taking the eighth seed in the West region, which would slate them to take on the Michigan State University Spartans (16-9, 8-6 Big Ten) in Sacramento, Cal. Meanwhile, Jerry Palm of CBS Sports has them at 10th seed in the East Region in his latest prediction—this would have them set to take on the Northwestern University Wildcats (18-7, 9-5 Big Ten) in Greensboro, NC.

The Owls next matchup will be on the road against the Middle Tennessee State University Blue Raiders (15-11, 8-7 C-USA) on Thursday, Feb. 16. Tipoff is scheduled for 6 p.m. and will be broadcast on CBS Sports Network.

Cameron Priester is the Sports Editor for the University Press. For information regarding this or other stories, email [email protected] or tweet him @PriesterCameron