Coming off their best NCAA Tournament finish in 22 years, the Kansas State Wildcats begin the 2010-11 college basketball season as the No. 3 team in the preseason coaches poll.
NCAA champion Duke has 29 of the 31 first-place votes to secure the No. 1 ranking, followed by Final Four participant Michigan State.
K-State, which won a school-record 29 games last season, is No. 3, followed by Pittsburgh, Ohio State and Villanova.
Kansas (33-3 last season) starts the season at No. 7.
Other Big 12 teams in the top 25 are Baylor at 14, Missouri (15) and Texas (25).
Wichita State received 13 votes. If the poll were extended beyond the top 25, the Shockers would be No. 32.
Thursday's USA Today/ESPN poll is the highest preseason ranking in K-State school history.
The highest previous preseason ranking was No. 8 in the AP polls before the 1961-62 season and the 1964-65 season.
The last time K-State was ranked No. 1? The final regular-season poll from the 1958-59 season. The Wildcats lost to Cincinnati in the Midwest Regional final that season.