College Basketball Preseason Rankings: Villanova, Temple Receive Votes In USA Today/ESPN Top 25

CLEVELAND, OH - MARCH 18: Head coach Jay Wright of the Villanova Wildcats reacts from the bench during the second half against the George Mason Patriots during the second round of the 2011 NCAA men's basketball tournament at Quicken Loans Arena on March 18, 2011 in Cleveland, Ohio. (Photo by Gregory Shamus/Getty Images)

Villanova and Temple both received votes in the USA Today/ESPN Coaches Poll, but neither team could crack the Top 25.

Villanova and Temple both received votes in the preseason USA Today/ESPN Coaches Poll, but neither team could crack the Top 25.

Temple finished just outside the Top 25 with 59 votes after finishing 26-8 last season. Villanova received 18 votes after ending last year with six straight losses and graduating three of the team's four top scorers. 

The two teams have been mired in a bit of controversy as Villanova faces rumors that the school is attempting to keep Temple from joining the Big East Conference.

Villanova coach Jay Wright considers Temple coach Fran Dunphy a good friend, and has spoken to Dunphy about the rumors.

"Villanova wants to be in the Big East for football, bottom line," Wright said during Big East basketball media day at the New York Athletic Club. "We've said it. We've worked with the Big East on it. We understand the situation in the Big East right now. We have to be loyal members and let the football schools do what's best.

"Temple's got nothing to do with that. Whatever they do with Temple is great. Just put Villanova in for football, that's all. We're 30-year members. If they want to put Temple in, great. We have great respect for Temple. We know all the positives that would come if they came in. Just put Villanova in for football, period."

North Carolina was ranked No. 1 in the poll, followed by Kentucky, Ohio St., UConn and Syracuse.

For more Temple basketball coverage, visit our team page.

For more Villanova basketball coverage, visit our team page, or our blog The Nova Blog.

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