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Tompkins: Honor legacy of Melnea Cass by helping those at core of crisis

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Tompkins: Honor legacy of Melnea Cass by helping those at core of crisis

William Monroe Trotter, Louisa May Alcott, W.E.B. Du Bois, Phillis Wheatley, Malcolm X, Lucy Stone, Prince Hall … there is a seemingly endless list of extraordinary people who share in Boston’s rich history of activism and advocacy, displaying the kind of passion, faith and dedication to the tenets of equality that leave their mark on society long after their mortal lives have ended.

For all of the collective legacy left by those mentioned above, and so many others before and after them, and their shared love of and responsibility for humanity, particularly those who are chronically underserved, frequently undervalued and often unseen, few surpass the sheer volume of service given by Dr. Melnea Agnes Jones Cass.

As a Black woman born in 1896, Melnea Cass was informed and instigated into service by her and her family’s struggles against the oppression of racism and sexism. Her grandmother was born into slavery and her mother’s only option for employment was limited to work as a domestic servant. Earning the honorary title “The First Lady of Roxbury,” Cass helped breathe life into nearly all of the human rights movements of the time, with enough service and activism to fill at least two lifetimes.

An abbreviated listing of her vast body of work shows Cass as a prolific champion of the people.

To name but a few of her leadership efforts, Cass organized Black women to register and cast their first votes following the ratification of the 19th Amendment in 1920; helped to found the Boston chapter of the Brotherhood of Sleeping Car Porters; led the Boston branch of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People; founded the Freedom House with Muriel and Otto Snowden; organized Women In Community Service  during World War II, which later became the Job Core; she founded the Kindergarten Mothers to encourage early education; and was appointed by Boston Mayor John Hynes to be the only woman charter member of Action for Boston Community Development, the anti-poverty agency that also gave assistance to people who lost their homes to urban renewal.

Honoring the many efforts that etched indelible marks on the world that she lived in, with echoes heard today, Cass earned several dedications, including the Melnea Cass Metropolitan District Commission Swimming and Skating Rink, the Melnea Cass YWCA in Boston’s Back Bay and her namesake Melnea Cass Boulevard in Roxbury.

As we remember and celebrate this dynamic, powerful record of service and caring for those most in need, perhaps we should lean more heavily upon the legacy left by Cass to help guide us through the mortal struggle unfolding on and around the boulevard bearing her name.

In the environs of Newmarket Square, a long-simmering humanitarian crisis now boils over daily, as far too many men and women lose their battle against the devastating onslaught of addiction, mental illness and homelessness in full public view, with frequent drug deals, needle use, sex trafficking, violence and even murder overtaking the area.

Boston, MA. – May 18: A man sitting on the sidewalk in front of a tent on the corner of Melnea Cass Boulevard and Massachusetts Avenue fills a needle while a woman with a needle in on her ear goes through her belongings on May 18, 2021 in Boston, Massachusetts. (Staff Photo By Matt Stone/MediaNews Group/Boston Herald)

While, sadly, none of this is new to Newmarket, over the past few years it is receiving a renewed focus by media outlets across the city and throughout the commonwealth due in equal parts to the rising tide of violence and two serious mayoral candidates jockeying for attention over the issue.

But, diagnosing a problem is only part of the solution. A full understanding of the myriad complex causes of the crisis must be followed by an equally thoughtful and humanistic response with plans that address the issues in their totality with the kind of persistence and commitment befitting the great Melnea Cass.

We know that the crisis of addiction, particularly the opioid epidemic, is being further fueled by an inadequate mental health infrastructure, lack of affordable housing and persistent racial disparities.

We are advocating for the creation of a centralized leadership structure in City Hall to work transparently with all communities. Additionally, Boston must lead a taskforce of regional municipal leaders to press our state and federal partners for additional funding to realize a decentralized recovery infrastructure.

Chronic homelessness and housing instability are additional root causes of this crisis. We must identify the gaps in our housing framework and then streamline our overly complicated zoning procedures to realize deeply affordable housing that is tied into an integrated transportation network in the city.

Many unhoused Bostonians who suffer from mental health and substance use disorders are at a disadvantage trying to navigate the many programs and benefits available to them. Along with decentralizing the physical location of services, we must ensure superior funding for professional case coordinators to assist these individuals with accessing all services they are entitled to receive.

While services are available during the day, the unhoused population is left without resources at night, which then often precipitates a law enforcement response that does not effectively service this population. In order to break this cycle of criminalization, we must lead with public health solutions and expand access to social service networks, and we must also work to strengthen collaboration between all city departments, ensuring dedicated resources for impacted families and targeted support for businesses, neighbors and community members.

In this battle for the very lives of the people living on the streets of “Mass and Cass,” and across Suffolk County, we must also have all options on the table, recognizing that even if all of the aforementioned resources were made available, there are some who are incapable or unable to avail themselves of these lifesaving services without more robust assistance. This includes, but is not limited to, my proposal to join forces with the local law enforcement and city and state agencies to provide treatment services in a separate, dedicated stand-alone unit within Department facilities for those individuals meeting these criteria.

We have a once-in-a-generation opportunity to house and treat a population desperately crying out for basic human dignity. The road to completion requires realistic, short and medium-term goals under a centralized authority in the city.

While the work ahead is both daunting and difficult, it is by no means impossible. If we commit our hearts, our minds and most importantly our wills to the work of it, we can solve this crisis.

Ultimately, there is no excuse not to act, for in the words of Melnea Cass herself, “If we cannot do great things, we can do small things in a great way.”


Steven W. Tompkins is the sheriff of Suffolk County.

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NCAAF Betting – Everything You Need to Know 2021

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NCAAF Betting – Everything You Need to Know 2021

When it comes to the most popular sports in the United States, college football is starting to close the gap on the NFL for the top overall spot. College football might only be played for a few months out of the year, but it draws plenty of attention during those months.

If you’re someone that has never really paid attention to NCAAF betting then you have been missing out for a long time. College football is exciting, but betting on college football takes things to a whole other level.

This article will not only provide you with a great introduction to NCAAF betting, but will hopefully help you win some money at the sportsbook. There are a number of different ways to get involved with NCAAF betting, and you should at least give one of them a shot soon.

College football is only going to continue growing in popularity and betting on the sport is going to trend in that same direction. If you think that you’re ready to tackle NCAAF betting then your next step is to scroll on and get ready to learn some more. If you want to jump into the NCAAF action, you can check out some of the best sportsbooks from our exclusive list:BetRivers - 100% First Deposit Bonus Up to $250!Betway - Get your $250 Risk-Free Bet!BetMGM - $1,000 - Risk Free Bet!

How To Bet On College Football

If you already know how to bet on the NFL, you’re going to be okay with skipping these next two sections. If betting on football is completely new to you, then we’re going to provide you with plenty of useful information.

College football betting can come in many different forms, but the goal is always to beat the best NCAAF betting sites and win some money. Your first step when it comes to NCAAF betting is to visit a sportsbook, and from there you’re going to see a long list of options.

The next step of NCAAF betting is to find a game that catches your eye, and then choose how you want to bet on that matchup. Instead of being overwhelmed by looking at all of the NCAAF betting options, instead realize that all are great opportunities to win some money.

If you think you’re ready to take a closer look at the NCAAF betting markets then scroll on to the next section.

NCAAF Betting Markets

You aren’t going to find many other sports with as many betting markets as what you will see with NCAA football. The reason is that since this sport is so popular, sportsbooks want to bring in as much action as possible.

You don’t have to become an expert of each NCAAF betting market listed below, but you should at least become familiar with each one. We are going to use a matchup between Colorado and Colorado State to briefly discuss the top NCAAF betting markets.

NCAAF Moneyline Bets

The best place to start is with an NCAAF moneyline bet because it is the easiest betting type to understand. All you have to do with this type of wager is simply pick the team that is going to win.

Colorado -175
Colorado State +225

You’re going to see different odds listed with each moneyline bet, and that tells you how much money you can potentially win. Taking Colorado State to pull off an upset is going to come with a significantly higher payout than betting on Colorado as the favorite.

NCAAF Spread Betting Explained

Even though moneyline betting is the easiest bet to understand, it’s not one that is commonly made when it comes to NCAAF betting. The most common option is betting against the spread.

You’ve probably heard the term “spread” used at times, and it’s okay to admit that you don’t really know what it means. You’re going to know how to use that term yourself after reading this section, and hopefully will be willing to make some of these bets.

Colorado Buffaloes -6.5
Colorado State Rams +6.5

NCAAF spread betting adds another degree of difficulty to moneyline betting, but it’s one of the best ways to get on the sport. There is a chance for a pretty solid payout with spread betting, as both sides usually have the same potential payout.

NCAAF Totals

Another great NCAAF betting option is what is known as totals or over/under. Instead of picking a winner, this bet focuses on the total number of points that are scored.

College football total odds are going to be all over the board, and each sportsbook is going to set their own lines with this type of bet. If you’re struggling to pick winners then it would be wise to give totals betting a shot.

Colorado vs. Colorado State:
Over 55.5 Points -110
Under 55.5 Points -110

This is pretty straightforward as you really only have two options here. If the teams combine for at least 56 points then betting the over is the right way to go, but a final score of 55 points or less would make ‘’the under’’ the right pick.

NCAAF Parlay Bets

Now that we’ve gone over the most basic ways to bet on college football, it’s time to expand and talk about a way to win big. Parlay betting exists as a way to add some risk when betting on college football, but there is a chance for a monster payday as well.

You’re also in complete control with parlay betting as you get to choose what “legs” you want to add. NCAAF betting parlays must include at least three legs, but you can add as many as you want up to a certain amount.

The three bets that we just talked about can all be added into a parlay wager, but you can also find some other options as well, depending on the sportsbook.

NCAAF Teaser Bets

A teaser bet is another chance for you to take control of the action, because you can adjust the spread with a teaser bet. You can usually tease the spread by six or ten points, and you can also tease both sides of the spread.

Here is an example of what this might look like assuming that the Colorado Buffaloes are 6.5-point favorites.

If you choose to tease this spread by six points then you can actually adjust the line to make Colorado slim 0.5 point favorites. You could also go the other way and have Colorado be 12.5-point favorites.

The choice is really up to you when it comes to teaser bets, and you can play around with potential winnings to help you decide how you want to tease the line.

Touchdown Scorers

Touchdowns get all of the attention in college football and you can now actually place a wager on players that find the end zone. This is a form of prop betting, which has become extremely popular throughout the US industry.

This is another NCAAF betting option that can potentially have a large payout, especially if you bet on someone that is not a star to score a touchdown. Be sure to take a long look at the touchdown scorer odds before making this type of bet.

Player Performance

Another form of prop betting that you are going to find at the sportsbook deals with individual player performances. This can really be offered in any statistical category, but it will usually only be the star players that have odds with this type of wager.

Here are some potential options of what you might see, and we will use former college football stars to give examples:

  • Over/under 124.5 rushing yards for Jarek Broussard?
  • Will Drew Carter throw at least three touchdown passes?
  • Will Todd Centeio have at least 34 passing attempts?

NCAAF Betting Strategy

If you’re looking to put together a solid NCAAF betting strategy then you need to be able to show some patience. It takes some time to get good at anything, and there are going to be some rough patches on this journey.

The best NCAAF betting strategy includes plenty of research and trying out different betting markets. You want to give yourself the best chance to win some money and you only accomplish that by trying out different betting options.

You also want to get as much help as possible before placing any wagers and checking out Betting.com is a great resource to use. There are a number of different ways to become successful at NCAAF betting, but it’s important to use a strategy that works right for you. Once founded, you can apply the betting strategy in some of the popular sportsbooks in the state such as:DraftKings - Get a Deposit Bonus Up to $1,000BetRivers - 100% First Deposit Bonus Up to $250!Betway - Get your $250 Risk-Free Bet!BetMGM - $1,000 - Risk Free Bet!

NCAAF Schedule

College football is a sport that begins in the Summer as the first official games take place in September. Most football fans consider college football as a nice appetizer to the NFL season that comes just a few days later.

The regular season college football games wrap up in the first week of December, but that’s not when the games end. In fact, the real fun seems to begin in December and actually lasts through the middle of January.

“Bowl season” has become a huge event, especially right around New Years. If you thought NCAAF betting was out of control during the regular season, you’re going to be blown away when it comes to bowl games.

Now that you know a little bit about the NCAA football schedule, it’s time to take a look at how the odds work and what you should do with them.

NCAAF Odds Comparison And Live Odds

After you’ve narrowed in on a betting market that you like, you then need to take a look at the NCAAF betting odds to see if there is any value. Not only should you do this at your favorite sports betting site, but you also need to compare odds as well.

Betting.com and the Denver Post are two great resources to use to help with your odds comparison because they have done that research for you. Here you can see how odds from each site compare in order to give yourself a chance to win the most money.

The only time that you won’t really be able to make an odds comparison is when it comes to live odds. Live or in-play NCAAF betting takes this experience to another level, and you won’t find many greater joys in life.

You do have to make some quick decisions when it comes to live betting odds as they will disappear in a matter of seconds sometimes.

Betting Favorites To Win The Next NCAAF Championship

The NCAA football championship is much different than other sports as there are only four teams even invited to compete for the title. The College Football Playoff is the name given to this event, and it’s usually champions from some of the biggest conferences.

Here are the current betting favorites to win the next NCAAF championship:

If you follow the sport of college football at all, you probably didn’t even need to see that list to know which teams are the favorites. College football might be one of the most exciting sports in the world, but the list of title contenders rarely changes.

Top Sportsbooks For NCAAF Betting

Just because a sportsbook offers NCAAF betting, that doesn’t mean that you should just blindly throw money at the site. You also need to shop around and find the best NCAAF betting odds, because this will give you the best chance to make some money.

You need to put together a rotation of sportsbooks to use as you are going to find different NCAAF betting options at each of them. Plus, all of the sportsbooks listed above are going to come with different bonuses and promotions, meaning even more money for you.

Here is a list of the top sportsbooks for NCAAF betting:

Conclusion

NCAAF betting has started to take over the US sports betting industry just as the sport has started to take over in the US. NCAAF betting is now offered in a variety of different ways and you’re advised to try out as many of the markets as you possibly can.

This article should’ve given you a great introduction to the top NCAAF betting markets, but you also need to explore these for yourself. This is a sport that isn’t going away anytime soon, and it’s also one that has some great opportunities to win some money.

Be sure to take a close look at the NCAAF betting lines before placing any wagers, but don’t be afraid to try something new. “Play Like a Champion Today” might be a mantra of Notre Dame, but it should also be your theme for betting on college football.

Gambling involves risk. Please only gamble with funds that you can comfortably afford to lose. Whilst we do our utmost to offer good advice and information we cannot be held responsible for any loss that maybe be incurred as a result of gambling. We do our best to make sure all the information that we provide on this site is correct. However, from time to time mistakes will be made and we will not be held liable. Please check any stats or information if you are unsure how accurate they are.


The news and editorial staffs of The Denver Post had no role in this post’s preparation.

This sponsored content article is governed by our Online Gambling Content Disclaimer (the “Disclaimer”) available here (or at the following URL: https://www.denverpost.com/online-gambling-content-disclaimer), and this sponsored content article constitutes “Gaming Content” as that term is defined in the Disclaimer.  Among other things, the Disclaimer governs your access to, and use of, this Gaming Content.  By accessing and using this Gaming Content, you expressly agree to the terms and conditions of the Disclaimer. The entire Disclaimer is incorporated herein by this reference. We strongly encourage you to please read the entire Disclaimer carefully. 

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NCAAF Pick and Parlays – Best Expert Predictions 2021

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NCAAF Pick and Parlays –  Best Expert Predictions 2021

College football is loaded with betting opportunities, as there are over 100 FBS teams in action on a typical college football Saturday. Because of that, there are plenty of chances for you to make money making NCAAF picks and parlays each week during the season.

From the smallest conferences in the FBS to the Power 5, and from the opening kickoff of the season to the final snap of the College Football Playoff, our NCAAF betting picks can help you turn a profit in college football.

By the end of this guide to NCAAF picks, you will find out more about our methodology when making college football picks. You will also learn more about what kinds of picks our expert handicappers made, and how you can apply the same rationale to your bets.

While there is no such thing as a guarantee in sports betting, our college football predictions can help maximize your chances of making money on Saturdays. If you want to directly jump into the action, below we listed the best sportsbooks for NCAAF betting in Colorado:BetRivers - 100% First Deposit Bonus Up to $250!Betway - Get your $250 Risk-Free Bet!BetMGM - $1,000 - Risk Free Bet!

What is the NCAAF Consensus?

Finding a consensus play when looking at NCAAF picks and parlays is like finding the Kansas Jayhawks winning a college football game, which is to say that it is very rare. With so many games on the schedule each week in college football, there are too many games to break down to get a legitimate consensus on each game.

Where the NFL has a maximum of 16 games in a week to break down and come to an agreement on, college football is a much different animal.

With that said, there are NCAAF picks that are easy to discover the popularity of early in each week during the season. The way to discover which plays are getting love in the betting markets early in the week is to observe the direction in which the betting lines are moving.

Line movements can show you where the money is being placed on a football game, even if there isn’t a large consensus on one side or the other. For example, let’s say that Colorado and Colorado State are about to do battle, with Colorado opening as a seven-point favorite.

If Colorado was bet on enough, they may become a heavier favorite, as oddsmakers might move their line to limit their liability on the Buffaloes as a touchdown favorite. Observing when those movements happen is very important to the success of college football bettors.

Later in the week, sportsbooks may release information on the percentage of bets that are on each side of a football game along with the percentage of money they have taken on each side.

These can be interesting, but aren’t likely to give you a full picture on whether or not there is a consensus on a particular football game. Instead, taking a look at the betting line and its evolution throughout the week is a better indicator on which plays are popular.

Moneyline NCAAF Picks And Parlays

Moneyline betting is one of the most popular ways to make NCAAF picks, as the goal of this type of bet is the easiest to understand. In the moneyline betting market, the goal is to simply predict which team is going to win a college football game.

The game can be won in regulation or overtime, by one point or one hundred points, so long as you correctly predict which side is going to come out on top when the game goes final.

In moneyline betting, the betting odds are different than they are in point spread and totals wagers, where both sides typically have odds of -110. Instead, you have to risk more money to back favorites on the moneyline in most cases, while underdogs have the potential to pay out more handsomely. This requires a slightly different betting approach than most other major NCAA betting picks.

For example, if Colorado was to play Colorado State, the Buffaloes might be a -250 favorite on the moneyline with Colorado State as a +175 underdog. In that scenario, you would have to bet $250 to win $100 when betting on Colorado, or you could bet $100 to win $175 on Colorado State. You could adjust those bets proportionally to the amount you want to wager, of course, as you are not required to bet based on a $100 unit size.

As you can see, it is more expensive to back a favorite on the moneyline than it is to back an underdog. And if a moneyline favorite loses, you stand to lose more than you would win backing the underdog. Because of this, you have to be careful when betting moneyline favorites when making NCAAF picks, as upsets are a recurring part of betting on college football.

Parlay betting is more of a risk versus reward suggestion where you place several bets on the same slip (called legs) and hope they all go in for a big payday. This is an effective way of boosting the NCAAF odds and potential payout, but if a single leg of your parlay fails, the whole stake is lost. You can place a parlay bet in any of the NCAAF betting sites in Colorado(link:https://www.denverpost.com/#DATE#/best-ncaaf-betting-sites), but the best for your parlays are:DraftKings - Get a Deposit Bonus Up to $1,000BetRivers - 100% First Deposit Bonus Up to $250!Betway - Get your $250 Risk-Free Bet!BetMGM - $1,000 - Risk Free Bet!

NCAAF Picks Against the Spread

Making NCAAF picks against the spread is more common than making picks on the moneyline, with covering the spread being the ultimate goal for many college football bettors. In the point spread market, oddsmakers will assign a point spread value to each side of a college football game, with the ultimate goal being to level the playing field between the two teams. The bigger the perceived mismatch between two teams, the bigger the point spread will be.

For example, if Colorado and Colorado State were to play a college football game, the point spread might be in the neighborhood of seven points. But if Colorado was to play an FCS opponent instead of Colorado State, the point spread might be a lot larger depending on how much better Colorado was expected to be than their adversary in that matchup. From there, it is up to you to decide which side will cover the spread.

When making NCAAF picks, it is important to remember that college football can be a very volatile sport. There is the potential for a lot of blowout wins, a lot of upsets, and everything in between. Because of that, there is no specific range of points that are acceptable to lay with a favorite, or to take with an underdog, as every single game has to be evaluated on a case-by-case basis.

NCAAF Picks This Week

If you are looking for NCAAF picks for this week, look no further than this space, as we update this page each week with our best bets for the weekend to come in college football. Among our NCAAF picks are point spread, moneyline and over/under wagers, along with any prop bets that we find particularly compelling going into the week in college football. If we think there is value in a betting market, our expert college football handicappers will relay that to you before kickoff.

Below, you will get some insight into the different types of NCAAF picks we will make throughout the season, in addition to the single-game markets that we mentioned above. With there being so many teams and conferences to wager on throughout the year, there are tons of chances to find value in more than just the single-game betting markets in this sport.

Best NCAAF Picks for the Regular Season

In addition to our single-game NCAAF picks, our college football handicappers will also regularly look at futures markets. Included in those futures markets are wagers pertaining to teams and individual players, as there are several chances to bet on college football before the season gets started. And with so many choices in the futures markets in college football, there are often some hefty plus prices available in these preseason NCAAF picks.

Among the team futures that we offer when passing along NCAAF picks are futures pertaining to which team will win each conference. Most sportsbooks that are available in Colorado offer betting action on Power 5 conference championship futures along with futures on the smaller conferences at the FBS level of college football.

Here, you can bet on which teams will win each league, with the potential for big payouts if you are willing to back a team that is not favored to win their league.

We also take a look at the national championship futures in college football each season to predict who will come out on top in the College Football Playoff in the year to come. The College Football Playoff is hard to get into, especially for teams outside of the Power 5.

But we do break down the betting markets pertaining to the national title and determine if there is any team that may break into that exclusive group going into the year.

Our college football handicappers look at individual awards and accomplishments heading into the season, making NCAAF picks for those as well. The biggest individual award in college football is the Heisman Trophy, which typically goes to the best offensive player on one of the best teams in the nation. But we also break down individual betting markets beyond the Heisman.

Going into each season, odds are made available on which players will win the major awards at each position in college football for the season. These awards, like the Biletnikoff Award for the nation’s best wide receiver, are often more competitive than the Heisman Trophy given that they are position-specific. And they are all evaluated by our team of college football analysts to determine where you should put your money before the year gets started.

NCAAF National Championship Betting Tips

When making NCAAF picks pertaining to which team will win the national championship, you should keep in mind that only 11 teams have appeared in the College Football Playoff since its first edition in 2014.

Of those 11 teams, only four have actually won the College Football Playoff. But anything is possible in a given year in this sport, and you should at least entertain the thought of those numbers increasing ahead of each season.

This year, a popular team when making NCAAF picks on the College Football Playoff is Georgia. The Bulldogs have the best chance to win the playoff this season, thanks in large part to a defense that has demolished their competition all season long.

As long as they continue to get stops as consistently as they have, it will be difficult for any team to beat them, even if their quarterback situation hasn’t been completely stable.

Additionally, teams like Alabama and Ohio State cannot be counted out during this year’s playoff chase. The Crimson Tide and Buckeyes are among the four teams that have won this competition before. And with both coming into the final few weeks of the season with top-four rankings, they could be the team to derail Georgia and earn yet another national title.

Conclusion

There is a lot to think about when making NCAAF picks, both in terms of the options available and choosing which of those options to bet on. But our NCAAF picks can make all of that much easier on you, as all you have to do is read our breakdowns throughout the college football season and confidently place bets from handicappers who are experienced in navigating these markets.

Gambling involves risk. Please only gamble with funds that you can comfortably afford to lose. Whilst we do our utmost to offer good advice and information we cannot be held responsible for any loss that maybe be incurred as a result of gambling. We do our best to make sure all the information that we provide on this site is correct. However, from time to time mistakes will be made and we will not be held liable. Please check any stats or information if you are unsure how accurate they are.


The news and editorial staffs of The Denver Post had no role in this post’s preparation.

This sponsored content article is governed by our Online Gambling Content Disclaimer (the “Disclaimer”) available here (or at the following URL: https://www.denverpost.com/online-gambling-content-disclaimer), and this sponsored content article constitutes “Gaming Content” as that term is defined in the Disclaimer.  Among other things, the Disclaimer governs your access to, and use of, this Gaming Content.  By accessing and using this Gaming Content, you expressly agree to the terms and conditions of the Disclaimer. The entire Disclaimer is incorporated herein by this reference. We strongly encourage you to please read the entire Disclaimer carefully. 

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AP men’s college basketball poll, Week 5: Purdue moves to No. 1 for the first time, CSU Rams at No. 26

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AP men’s college basketball poll, Week 5: Purdue moves to No. 1 for the first time, CSU Rams at No. 26

Purdue is No. 1 in The Associated Press men’s college basketball poll for the first time.

The Boilermakers were a unanimous No. 1 in the poll released Monday to move up from No. 2 last week. Reigning national champion Baylor moved up to No. 2, with Duke, UCLA and Gonzaga rounding out the top five.

Purdue (8-0, 1-0 Big Ten) reached No. 2 in consecutive seasons under Gene Keady from 1986-88 and matched its previous high last week, receiving nine first-place votes from a 61-person media panel.

The Boilermakers routed Florida State last week and opened Big Ten play with a 77-70 win over Iowa on Friday, sliding into the top spot after previous No. 1 Duke lost to an unranked Ohio State squad that is now No. 21. Until this week, Purdue had the second-most appearances in the AP poll — 379 weeks — for a school that had never been ranked No. 1 (Maryland, 434 weeks).

“They deserved to be No. 1,” Iowa coach Fran McCaffery said after the loss to Purdue. “They can hurt in so many ways. They have depth, experience and size. It’s going to be a hard team to beat.”

Purdue missed the NCAA Tournament during the pandemic-altered 2020-21 season, but returned its top eight scorers, including all-conference forward Trevion Williams. The Boilermakers can challenge teams in variety of ways, from sophomore guard Jayden Ivey attacking off the dribble to dropping the ball in the post to 7-foot-4 sophomore Zach Edey.

Purdue is winning by an average of 25.6 points per game, the closest being the seven-point win over Iowa.

“You want to get in close games and win them,” Purdue coach Matt Painter said. “It really helps you through the season.”

FALLING ZAGS

Gonzaga plays one of the nation’s most difficult nonconference schedules every season and this year has been no different. The Zags (7-2) typically win the big early-season showdowns, but haven’t been able to do it with as much frequency this year as they try to integrate several new players.

Gonzaga looked unstoppable in early wins over Texas and UCLA. The Zags weren’t so dominating their last two games against AP Top 25 teams, losing to Duke in Las Vegas on Nov. 26 and No. 16 Alabama in Seattle on Saturday.

“I just think we have to have more of a sense of urgency,” Gonzaga big man Drew Timme said. “We just got to fix it. But we’ve got a lot of time to fix it. We’ll be fine.”

He’s right. Most teams would love to “drop” to No. 5 in the AP Top 25.

RISING AND FALLING

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