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Wisconsin Badgers men's basketball climbs to No. 4 in AP poll with 2 wins combined with upsets
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Wisconsin Badgers men's basketball climbs to No. 4 in AP poll with 2 wins combined with upsets

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UW freshman forward Ben Carlson wrestles for the ball with Arkansas Pine-Bluff's Alvin Stredic Jr. during the Badgers' 92-58 win on Friday night at the Kohl Center.

The University of Wisconsin men’s basketball team moved up three spots to No. 4 in the Associated Press Top 25 poll after opening the season with a pair of victories last week.

This marks the highest the Badgers have been ranked since being No. 3 late in the 2014-15 season, which ended with UW falling to Duke in the NCAA tournament championship game.

UW (2-0) opened this season by beating Eastern Illinois 77-67 last Wednesday night and Arkansas Pine-Bluff 92-58 two days later. The Badgers had both of those games in hand by halftime — they’ve outscored their opponents 96-39 in the first half — before falling off a bit in the second half.

Losses by teams ranked above them — Villanova, Virginia and Kansas — allowed the Badgers to move into a top five that also includes Big Ten brethren Iowa at No. 3 and Illinois at No. 5. Other Big Ten teams ranked included No. 8 Michigan State, No. 23 Ohio State and No. 24 Rutgers.

Gonzaga remained at No. 1, followed by No. 2 Baylor.

The Badgers return to play Tuesday night with a game against UW-Green Bay (0-1) at the Kohl Center. UW also travels to Marquette (2-0) on Friday night.

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