The way last season went for Alabama, being ranked in the Top 25 wasn't even a consideration.

Just three games into this season, the Crimson Tide pulled into the Associated Press college basketball poll for the first time in nearly three years.

Alabama went 13-16 last season, coach Mark Gottfried's second in Tuscaloosa. Four starters returned from that team, and Gerald Wallace, one of the nation's most highly sought-after recruits, has starred in a sixth-man role.

On Monday, the Crimson Tide were back in the rankings for the first time since Dec. 24, 1997, at No. 23.

This week's other newcomer was Iowa State (5-0), which came in at No. 25. The Cyclones were ranked sixth in last season's final poll.

Duke, which beat two ranked teams last week, held the top spot for the second straight week, while Michigan State moved up one spot to No. 2.

The Blue Devils (7-0), who beat Illinois and Temple last week, received 59 first-place votes and 1,715 points from the national media panel, 107 more than Michigan State.

The Spartans (5-0), who received nine No. 1 votes, moved up one spot after beating North Carolina and Illinois-Chicago last week.

Kansas (7-0) dropped from second to third despite easily beating Middle Tennessee State and Illinois State in its only games last week. The Jayhawks received one first-place vote.

Stanford and Arizona remained fourth and fifth in the rankings, while Tennessee and Seton Hall each moved up one place to sixth and seventh, respectively.

Florida moved up two places to eighth, while Illinois held ninth and Notre Dame jumped one spot to No. 10.

Wake Forest led the Second Ten, followed by Southern California, Syracuse, North Carolina, Connecticut, Virginia, Wisconsin, Cincinnati, Maryland and Oklahoma.

Arkansas, Utah, Alabama, St. John's and Iowa State rounded out the Top 25.