After stretching its record to 12-0, top-ranked Duke finally stumbled, losing an 87-82 overtime shocker at Clemson and then taking an 82-67 trouncing at home by North Carolina.The back-to-back losses make it a foregone conclusion that the Blue Devils will lose their No. 1 status in the polls -- probably to unbeaten DePaul.
Duke, which began the week by defeating Georgia Tech 55-42, held the ball for the last four minutes at Clemson with the score tied at 66-all, but couldn't work it in for a good shot at the end and missed its chance to win in regulation. The Tigers then took over in the extra session, pulling ahead quickly and sinking 15 of 17 free throw attempts to nail down the decision.
Sophomore Mark Aguirre was the big gun for DePaul, scoring 29 points in a 96- 79 victory over Ball State and pouring in 36 in a 92-85 decision over Marquette. The two wins boosted the Blue Demons' record to 12-0 in their bid to move up from No. 2 to the top spot.
* Also remaining unbeaten and certain to move up was fifth-ranked Syracuse, which won four games during the week to hike its record to 14-0. The Orangemen knocked off West Virginia, Baltimore, and Rhode Island with relative ease, but had to struggle from behind for a 66-61 victory over Purdue on Sunday to keep their streak intact. They trailed by as many as 12 points in the first half and were still behind by nine at intermission, but 6ft. 11in. center Roosevelt Bouie (who had 17 points for the game) led a second half comeback that produced the victory.
Third-ranked Ohio State (11-1) won both of its games, including a 77-71 Big Ten decision over tough Iowa. Several other highly ranked teams fell, however, while unranked Alabama virtually assured itself of moving into the Top 20 via upset victories over No. 4 Kentucky and No. 6 LSU.