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Wisconsin basketball: Badgers open season ranked No. 9 in AP Top 25

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A top-10 designation for a Badgers team with lofty goals sounds about right.

NCAA Basketball: NCAA Tournament-East Regional Practice Bill Streicher-USA TODAY Sports

For the sixth consecutive year, the Wisconsin Badgers are ranked in the AP Top 25 to open the season, earning the second-highest preseason ranking in school history on Monday as the No. 9 team in the country.

Coming off a Sweet Sixteen appearance in 2015-16, the Badgers return 99.8 percent of their minutes to become the highest-ranked Big Ten team.

The only time in school history that Wisconsin opened the season ranked higher was to kick off the 2014-15 Final Four campaign ranked No. 3.

Indiana (No. 11) is the next-highest ranked Big Ten team, followed by Michigan State (No. 12), Purdue (No. 15) and Maryland (No. 25). Ohio State and Michigan also received votes.

A plethora of recent Wisconsin NCAA tournament opponents are in the Top 10: Duke (No. 1), Kentucky (No. 2), Oregon (No. 5), North Carolina (No. 6), Xavier (No. 7) and Arizona (No. 10).

Here’s the full rankings table:

RK TEAM RECORD PTS
1 Duke (58) 0-0 1,612
2 Kentucky (2) 0-0 1,479
3 Kansas 0-0 1,476
4 Villanova (4) 0-0 1,465
5 Oregon (1) 0-0 1,343
6 North Carolina 0-0 1,314
7 Xavier 0-0 1,167
8 Virginia 0-0 1,149
9 Wisconsin 0-0 1,135
10 Arizona 0-0 1,004
11 Indiana 0-0 917
12 Michigan State 0-0 903
13 Louisville 0-0 755
14 Gonzaga 0-0 699
15 Purdue 0-0 672
16 UCLA 0-0 540
17 Saint Mary's 0-0 512
18 Connecticut 0-0 504
19 Syracuse 0-0 464
20 West Virginia 0-0 360
21 Texas 0-0 250
22 Creighton 0-0 231
23 Rhode Island 0-0 199
24 Iowa State 0-0 168
25 Maryland 0-0 144
Others receiving votes: Cincinnati 110, Dayton 98, Florida State 88, California 74, San Diego State 48, Miami 35, NC State 29, Butler 21, Wichita St 21, Ohio State 18, Virginia Tech 18, Florida 18, Texas A&M 14, Mississippi State 14, Oklahoma 11, Colorado 10, Michigan 8, Monmouth 7, Notre Dame 6, Washington 5, Seton Hall 5, Princeton 2, Ohio 1, Vanderbilt 1, Harvard 1