For the first time since Dec. 31, 2018, UConn women’s basketball is the AP’s No. 1 team in the country. The Huskies claim the top spot after Stanford — the previous top team in the nation — fell to unranked Texas yesterday. UConn received 19 first-place votes, far outpacing No. 2 Oregon (five first-place votes), No. 3 Oregon State (four) and No. 4 South Carolina (one).
Overall, the Huskies have spent 247 weeks at No. 1, the most all-time. The last time UConn wasn’t ranked was the final poll of the 1992-93 season and since then, the Huskies have held the number one spot at some point in 21 of those last 26 seasons.
Although UConn is undefeated, it hasn’t faced any significant challenges so far this year, with No. 16 DePaul as the Huskies’ only ranked opponent. Even associate head coach Chris Dailey isn’t convinced her team is the best in the land.
“I don’t know that we’re the number one team in the country. I haven’t seen enough of a lot of people but I’ve known our team when we’re number one and this team isn’t there yet. I think somewhere down the line — we’re not worried if we’re number one now,” she said after the win over Oklahoma. “I think what we want to do is give ourselves the best chance to be in a position in March. I think Geno said it last week that he was shocked we were the number two team. I think he’ll probably be shocked if we become the number one team.”
However, UConn’s ranking will be tested over the next month and a half. The Huskies will play No. 6 Baylor (Jan. 9), No. 22 Tennessee (Jan. 23), No. 2 Oregon (Feb. 3) and No. 4 South Carolina (Feb. 10).
But for now, UConn will open the decade as the No. 1 team in the country and close the decade as the No. 1 team in the country. Seasons change but the Huskies’ dominance doesn’t.