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Cal tumbles, Texas A&M on the rise

TCU struck again. The Horned Frogs took on another No. 3 team and came up with another big win. This time, it was Cal that couldn't hold off the Horned Frogs. The 82-73 loss drops the Golden Bears seven spots in this week's power rankings. They're not alone, though. Maryland, which opened the season with a loss to TCU, suffered another upset. Sunday's loss to Pittsburgh moved the Terrapins out of the top 10 and put the Panthers into the rankings for the first time this season.

NCAA Basketball Power Rankings
1Connecticut Huskies
Last Week: 1
The Huskies are in the midst of a 10-day break between games. You'd have to go back to the 2004-05 season to find the last time UConn lost its first game back from its December final exam break. This layoff, however, ends at home where UConn has won a nation's-best 29 straight.
Next three: 12/14 vs. Penn State; 12/18 vs. Washington; 12/19 vs. Northern Colorado
2North Carolina Tar Heels
Last Week: 2
With 10 days off, forward Rashanda McCants has time to let her broken nose heal, or at least get used to the face mask she was so uncomfortable with in last week's win at Ohio State. McCants hit just 4-of-11 from the field and really struggled at the free-throw line, where she missed 6-of-8. A little time off should get the Player of the Year candidate back on track.
Next three: 12/13 vs. Coastal Carolina; 12/15 vs. Arkansas Pine-Bluff; 12/20 vs. Illinois
3Texas A&M Aggies
Last Week: 4
The Big 12 beware if SMU coach Rhonda Rompola is correct. She had nothing but praise for the unbeaten Aggies after they forced the Mustangs into 26 turnovers en route to an 80-48 win on Sunday. The margin enabled the Aggies to get all 15 players onto the floor. "I have seen a lot of Gary Blair teams going back to his early days (at SFA and Arkansas)," Rompola said. "This is by far his best team."
Next three: 12/13 vs. Texas State; 12/21 vs. TCU; 12/30 vs. New Mexico
4Stanford Cardinal
Last Week: 5
Stanford hopes Jayne Appel doesn't cool off during the exam layoff. Few players have been hotter on the offensive end. Appel hit 63 percent from the field in the last five games. That stretch included an 8-for-8 performance at Hawaii.
Next three: 12/13 vs. Fresno State; 12/16 at Duke; 12/19 at South Carolina
5Tennessee Volunteers
Last Week: 6
A close call at George Washington sent the Lady Vols into their break on a bit of a sour note. Pat Summitt was so disappointed with her young team's play, she cut some of the rookies' playing time. You have to feel for Middle Tennessee State, Tennessee's next opponent with 10 days to prepare.
Next three: 12/11 vs. Middle Tennessee State; 12/14 at Texas; 12/18 at Old Dominion
6Texas Longhorns
Last Week: 9
The Longhorns are 8-0 for the first time since 1987. They showed something on Sunday with a 74-50 win on the road against a previously unbeaten Mississippi team. Texas will be tested on Sunday at home against Tennessee. It doesn't matter that the Lady Vols are a young team. A win over Tennessee would say a lot.
Next three: 12/14 vs. Tennessee; 12/18 vs. Arizona State; 12/28 vs. UTEP
7Oklahoma Sooners
Last Week: 8
100. That's how many consecutive double-doubles Courtney Paris has logged. If that number doesn't seem astounding enough, just think, three years. That's how long it's taken. Paris began her record-setting run on Dec. 5, 2005.
Next three: 12/12 vs. Cal State Bakersfield at San Jose; 12/13 vs. California at San Jose; 12/21 vs. Tulsa
8Baylor Bears
Last Week: 10
Lamar. Samford. UT-Pan-American. The Bears couldn't have asked for a better stretch following their loss to Wisconsin. They'll have plenty of time to work out the kinks before a road stretch that includes Cal. We'll see which was a fluke: the Wisconsin loss or the win over Stanford.
Next three: 12/13 vs. Samford; 12/16 vs. Texas-Pan American; 12/20 at Oregon
9Auburn Tigers
Last Week: 12
When it comes to taking care of the ball, few do it better than Whitney Bodie. She ranks sixth in the nation in assist-to-turnover ratio (3.18-to-1). Bodie posted her first triple-double last week with 13 points, 12 assists and 10 rebounds against Sam Houston State. It was the first of two straight games Bodie had at least 10 assists.
Next three: 12/19 at George Washington; 12/21 at Coppin State; 12/29 vs. Duquesne
10California Golden Bears
Last Week: 10
After shooting just 28 percent in the second half of their loss to TCU, the Golden Bears will have a chance to regain their shooting touch against San Jose State. They'd better find it. Oklahoma's Courtney Paris doesn't allow many second chances.
Next three: 12/12 at San Jose State; 12/13 vs. Oklahoma; 12/22 vs. Baylor
11Louisville Cardinals
Last Week: 11
The Cardinals better beware. Hartford has already pulled off one upset this season, knocking off Duke last month. Hartford will have to stop Angel McCoughtry, though. She's averaging 26.7 points in her last four games.
Next three: 12/10 vs. Hartford; 12/14 vs. Kentucky; 12/21 vs. Vermont
12Duke Blue Devils
Last Week: 13
Center Chante Black swatted a career-high six blocks in Sunday's win over Michigan. That moved her into seventh place on the ACC career block shot list. With 214, Black needs 31 to catch Georgia Tech's Dolores Bootz.
Next three: 12/16 vs. Stanford; 12/19 at USC; 12/20 vs. Siena
13Rutgers Scarlet Knights
Last Week: 14
The Scarlet Knights are back on track, winning two straight since dropping a pair of games to Stanford and Cal. They've done it with defense. Rutgers held Georgia and Temple to 34 percent shooting. The Bulldogs may be down a bit this year, but holding anyone to 12 points in a half -- as Rutgers did on Monday -- is impressive.
Next three: 12/11 vs. Prairie View A&M; 12/14 vs. Army at N.Y.; 12/19 vs. Lafayette
14Notre Dame Fighting Irish
Last Week: 15
With leading scorer Ashley Barlow sidelined with a concussion, guard Melissa Lechlitner has stepped up her scoring efforts in the last two games. Lechlitner (9.7 ppg for the season) averaged 17 points in wins over Eastern Michigan and Purdue.
Next three: 12/10 at Michigan; 12/13 at Valparaiso; 12/20 vs. Loyola-Chicago
15Pittsburgh Panthers
Last Week: NR
The Panthers have reeled off six straight wins, including a 86-57 pounding of Maryland, since opening the season with a loss to Texas A&M. Preseason Player of the Year candidate Shavonte Zellous averaged 24.5 points against the Aggies and Terrapins.
Next three: 12/13 vs. West Virginia State; 12/16 vs. Wagner; 12/19 at Florida A&M
16Maryland Terrapins
Last Week: 7
It's been a long time since Maryland suffered a beating like Sunday's 86-57 drubbing to Pittsburgh, the Terrapins' worst defeat since 2005. Fortunately the upcoming schedule should allow the Terrapins to get back on track.
Next three: 12/9 at Loyola; 12/21 at Old Dominion; 12/29 vs. UNC Asheville
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