Sooners, Tide Tops In Coaches Poll

The Coaches Poll, conducted by USA Today, has released its pre-season rankings with Oklahoma number one and Alabama number two. That is in line with the consensus opinion of other pre-season polls. The Coaches Poll is part of the BCS equation, unlike the Associated Press poll, which will release its pre-season rankings just prior to the start of the season.

Alabama trailed Oklahoma substantially in first place votes with the Sooners getting 42 and Bama 13. The Crimson Tide was fairly close in points, Oklahoma getting 1,454 and Alabama 1,414.

Oregon was third (two firsts, 1,309 points), LSU fourth (two firsts, 1,290 points), Florida State fifth, Stanford sixth, Boise State seventh, Oklahoma State eighth, Texas A&M ninth, and Wisconsin 10th.

Alabama plays six teams ranked in the top 25. In addition to LSU, the Tide will play 14th ranked Arkansas, 19th Auburn, 20th Mississippi State, 23rd Florida, and 25th Penn State.

Also making the top 25 from the Southeastern Conference are South Carolina 12th and Georgia 22nd, giving the SEC eight teams in the rankings. Tennessee was among "others receiving votes."

Alabama Coach Nick Saban is one of five SEC coaches among the 59 taking part in the poll. Also participating are Gene Chizik of Auburn, James Franklin of Vanderbilt, Les Miles of LSU, Mark Richt of Georgia, and Steve Spurrier of South Carolina.

Other voters include Alabama graduates David Cutcliffe, head coach at Duke, and Mike Riley, head coach at Oregon State; and Rob Ianello, head coach at Akron, was on the Tide staff in the late 1980s.

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