Tigers Picked No. 4 in AP Preseason Poll

by LSUsports.net (@LSUsports)
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Tigers Picked No. 4 in AP Preseason Poll

BATON ROUGE — LSU has been picked No. 4 in the nation by the Associated Press, in the preseason poll released on Saturday.

The Tigers, who won the BCS National Championship last season and finished with a 13-1 mark, are ranked behind No. 1 Southern Cal, second-ranked Oklahoma and No. 3 Georgia.

LSU defeated Oklahoma, 21-14, in last year’s Nokia Sugar Bowl to claim the BCS title. The Tigers also defeated Georgia, 17-10, in Tiger Stadium in September, and again, 34-13, in the Southeastern Conference championship game in Atlanta to earn their second SEC title in the last three seasons.

The No. 4 ranking is the highest AP preseason ranking for LSU since the 1959 season, when the Tigers were ranked No. 1 in the preseason poll. LSU is also ranked No. 3 in both the ESPN/USA Today Coaches poll and the Sports Illustrated poll, behind Southern Cal and Oklahoma.

Florida State in ranked No. 5 in the AP preseason poll, followed by Miami, Texas, Michigan, Ohio State and West Virginia. Other SEC teams in the top 25 include Florida at No. 11, Tennessee at No. 13 and Auburn at No. 17.

The Tigers return seven starters on defense, six starters on offense and a pair of specialists from last year’s team. Among the returning starters include preseason All-Americans in center Ben Wilkerson, offensive tackle Andrew Whitworth, return specialist Skyler Green, defensive end Marcus Spears and cornerback Corey Webster.

2004 Associated Press Preseason Top 25 Poll
No. Team Record Pts. Previous
1. USC (48) 0-0 1,603 1
2. Oklahoma (11) 0-0 1,529 3
3. Georgia (5) 0-0 1,480 7
4. LSU (1) 0-0 1,446 2
5. Florida State 0-0 1,291 11
6. Miami 0-0 1,287 5
7. Texas 0-0 1,235 12
8. Michigan 0-0 1,223 6
9. Ohio State 0-0 1,005 4
10. West Virginia 0-0 937 NR
11. Florida 0-0 836 24
12. Kansas State 0-0 763 14
13. California 0-0 744 NR
14. Tennessee 0-0 658 15
15. Clemson 0-0 638 22
16. Virginia 0-0 627 NR
17. Auburn 0-0 540 NR
18. Missouri 0-0 525 NR
19. Iowa 0-0 518 8
20. Utah 0-0 446 21
21. Wisconsin 0-0 328 NR
22. Maryland 0-0 310 NR
23. Oregon 0-0 200 NR
24. Purdue 0-0 153 18
25. Minnesota 0-0 142 20

OTHERS RECEIVING VOTES: Louisville 125, Nebraska 112, N.C. State 76, Memphis 56, Boise State 47, TCU 39, Toledo 33, Oregon State 29, Washington State 24, Oklahoma State 13, Fresno State 13, Alabama 12, Hawaii 11, Boston College 7, Northern Illinois 7, Texas Tech 7, Virginia Tech 6, Southern Miss 6, Mississippi 6, Marshall 6, Georgia Tech 5, Miami (OHIO) 4, South Carolina 4, Texas A&M 3, Arkansas 3, Bowling Green 2, Connecticut 1, North Texas 1, Penn State 1, Notre Dame 1.