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Maryland Terrapins crack the top five of AP Top 25 Poll for first time since 2016

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Maryland Terrapins crack the top five of AP Top 25 Poll for first time since 2016

Duke solidified its grip on No. 1 while Maryland jumped North Carolina into the top 5 in the AP Top 25 men’s college basketball poll after a relatively quiet week on the schedule.

That could change with an abundance of holiday tournaments tipping off this week.

The Blue Devils blew through California before beating Georgetown 81-73 on Friday to win the 2K Empire Classic at Madison Square Garden. Those performances on back-to-back nights helped earn Duke 53 first-place votes from a 65-member media panel in The Associated Press poll released Monday.

Louisville received seven first-place votes and remained second, followed by Michigan State with four No. 1 nods. Kansas remained fourth while Virginia received the other No. 1 vote and was seventh.

Gonzaga, Kentucky and Ohio State rounded out the top 10.

Florida re-entered the AP Top 25 at No. 24 while Texas fell out.

2019 AP Top 25 Poll Week 4

Team, record (movement)

1. Duke, 6-0,
2. Louisville, 6-0
3. Michigan State, 3-1
4. Kansas, 3-1
5. Maryland, 5-0 (+1)
6. North Carolina, 4-0 (-1)
7. Virginia, 6-0
8. Gonzaga, 6-0
9. Kentucky, 5-1
10. Ohio State, 5-0
11. Oregon, 5-0
12. Texas Tech, 5-0
13. Seton Hall, 4-1
14. Arizona, 6-0
15. Utah State, 7-0
16. Memphis, 5-1
17. Tennessee, 4-0 (+3)
18. Auburn, 5-0 (+1)
19. Baylor, 5-1 (+5)
20. VCU, 5-0 (+1)
21. Colorado, 4-0 (+2)
22. Villanova, 4-2 (-5)
23. Washington, 5-1 (+2)
24. Florida, 5-2 (unranked)
25. Xavier, 6-1 (-7)

Dropped out: Texas

Receiving votes: Florida State 137, Saint Mary's 22, Oklahoma 22, Butler 21, LSU 19, Texas 16, Arkansas 13, Michigan 12, Penn State 10, Purdue 10, Liberty 6, Wisconsin 4, Missouri 3, Cincinnati 3, Vermont 2, San Diego State 2, Dayton 1, Mississippi State 1, Georgia 1

Locally, the three teams from the Mid-Atlantic region saw limited movement. All three teams, Maryland, Virginia and VCU remained undefeated after play concluded for the past week.

Maryland cracked the top five for the first time since February 2016. The Terps leapfrogged North Carolina after the Tar Heels had a tough home contest against Elon. On the flipside, Maryland had to dominant wins over Fairfield and George Mason.

Virginia won the Air Force Reserve Tip-Off Tournament, most notably beating Vermont and Arizona State. They saw no change from the voters.

VCU jumped up another spot by virtue of not losing. Loses by Villanova and Xavier allowed them to make a move forward. Liberty (8-0) continues to receive votes with their hot start to the season.

NBC Sports Washington's Tyler Byrum contributed to this report. 

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Maryland nabs transfer forward Jairus Hamilton from Boston College

Maryland nabs transfer forward Jairus Hamilton from Boston College

The Maryland Terrapins have reloaded their frontcourt depth with adding Boston College transfer Jairus Hamilton.

Current rules will have the forward having to sit out a year before his final two years of eligibility. However, the NCAA is voting at the end of June to have a one-time transfer waiver that would allow players to not have to sit for their first transfer.

At Boston College, the 6-foot-8 forward started 20 games last year as he battled an undisclosed injury. He significantly rose his per-game averages to 9.5 and 4.3 rebounds from his freshman year and was a critical part of the Eagles' offense. 

Primarily playing as a lengthy wing, he won't have the same presence as Jalen Smith did in the post the last two seasons with the Terps. Hamilton shot 28% from behind the arc in 2019-20, attempting the fourth-most threes on the team. The Charlotte native can play and attack the post, but is not your typical shot-blocking, rebounding big man. Assuming Smith is entering the NBA draft, Maryland will still need to find depth under the basket. 

The former four-star prospect and top-100 recruit received an offer from Maryland when recruited out of high school. As a member of the Class of 2018, he was in the same recruiting class as Smith.

Earlier this week it was reported that the Terps were also interested in Yale transfer Jordan Bruner. The grad transfer could immediately come in next season and presumably fill in Smith's role.

With Smith still on the roster, there is only one open scholarship available for the 2020-21 season, according to Verbal Commits

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Howard women's soccer officially wins the toilet paper juggle challenge

Howard women's soccer officially wins the toilet paper juggle challenge

Everyone can go ahead and stop posting their attempt at the toilet paper juggling challenge because Howard University women's soccer has officially won.

In a video posted Thursday, 23 members of the team can be seen juggling a roll of toilet paper and continuously passing it off to their teammates off-screen. 

In the age of coronavirus, social distancing and owning toilet paper rolls are some of the most prominent aspects of the pandemic. This particular toilet paper challenge combines them in a fun way. 

The toilet paper challenge began when bored pro athletes challenged each other to juggle a roll of toilet paper ten times in a row without it falling to the ground. Lionel Messi was one of the first to do it and the internet, as it does, took the idea and ran with it. 

It was fun to watch all the videos while the challenge lasted, but as we've already said, Howard has won this one. 

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