Published: Mon, August 21, 2017
Sport | By Cecil Buchanan

AP Top 25: Sooners and Cowboys crack Top 10 in preseason rankings

AP Top 25: Sooners and Cowboys crack Top 10 in preseason rankings

The team started last season ranked fifth in the preseason version, before a 2-2 start led to a drop in the rankings and the firing of coach Les Miles.

No need to overthink it: Alabama is No. 1 in the AP preseason Top 25.

Auburn is one of six SEC teams ranked in the poll, trailing only top-ranked Alabama, and is scheduled to play four teams ranked in the top 25, including Alabama and No. 5 Clemson.

The Crimson Tide received 52 of 61 first-place votes from media members in the poll released Monday. A year earlier, it was No. 9 in the preseason, but was unranked to end the season despite a 10-3 record. Many think they are capable of contending with Oklahoma and Oklahoma State for a Big 12 championship. Florida State 4. Southern California 5.

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Florida State's 2017 schedule features five opponents ranked in the preseason poll, including No. 1 Alabama in the season opener on September 2 at Atlanta's brand-new Mercedes-Benz Stadium.

- No. 6 Penn State has its best preseason ranking since it was No. 3 in 1999.

The Bulldogs are the highest ranked SEC East team, two spots ahead of No. 17 Florida. Florida 18. Miami 19. MI 12. Auburn 13. Those teams finished an average of 6.34 places (higher or lower) from where they were ranked in the preseason.

- 5.4 teams (54 percent total) that started the season ranked in the top 10 finished ranked in the top 10. The Crimson Tide was also named the nation's No. 1 team in the USA Today's Amway Coaches Poll released August 3.

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