Football 14th in Preseason AP Top 25

by LSUsports.net (@LSUsports)
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Football 14th in Preseason AP Top 25

BATON ROUGE — LSU, the defending Southeastern Conference champion, enters the 2002 season ranked No. 14 in the nation in the Associated Press poll, the wire service announced on Saturday.

The No. 14 ranking marks the second consecutive year in which the Tigers are ranked No.14 in the AP preseason poll. Last week, the Tigers earned a No. 13 preseason ranking in the ESPN/USA Today Coaches poll.

A year ago, LSU posted a 10-3 overall mark, beat Tennessee in the SEC Championship game and Illinois in the Sugar Bowl and finished the year ranked No. 7 in the AP poll.

“We flattered to be recognized in the AP Top 25,” LSU coach Nick Saban said. “However, it’s not where you start, but it’s how you compete throughout a 12-game schedule and where you finish the season. That’s what we’re focusing on.

“I’ve seen where as many as seven teams on our schedule have been ranked in the top 25 by one service or another so it’s pretty obvious that we have a lot of challenges ahead of us.”

Miami, the defending national champion, is ranked No. 1 in the nation in the preseason poll, followed by Oklahoma, Florida State, Texas and Tennessee. Florida is sixth, followed by Colorado, Georgia, Washington, and Nebraska.

Washington State starts the next 10, followed by Michigan, Ohio State, LSU, and Oregon. Virginia Tech, LSU’s season-opening opponent, is No. 16, followed by Louisville, Michigan State, Marshall and Southern Cal.

Maryland is ranked No. 21, while South Carolina is No. 22, followed by Texas A&M, Penn State and Wisconsin.

AP Top 25 Preseason Poll

Pos. Team 2001 Record Pts.
1. Miami (27) 12-0 1,746
2. Oklahoma (21) 11-2 1,732
3. Florida State (10) 8-41,683
4. Texas (13) 11-2 1,682
5. Tennessee (3) 11-2 1,601
6. Florida 10-2 1,313
7. Colorado 10-3 1,291
8. Georgia 8-4 1,179
9. Washington 8-4 1,133
10. Nebraska 11-2 1,131
11. Washington State 10-2 1,096
12. Michigan 8-4 1,061
13. Ohio State 7-5 1,029
14. LSU 10-3 832
15. Oregon 11-1 736
16. Virginia Tech 8-4 583
17. Louisville 11-2 574
18. Michigan State 7-5 468
19. Marshall 11-2 433
20. Southern Cal 6-6 420
21. Maryland 10-2 318
22. South Carolina 9-3 268
23. Texas A&M 8-4 247
24. Penn State 5-6 221
25. Wisconsin 5-7 193