For the fourth consecutive year, CALIFORNIA has finished second in the poll behind the Trojans.
The media poll has correctly selected the Conference Champion in 24 of 46 previous polls, including the last seven years in a row. Following are the results of the preseason media poll (points 10-9-8-7-6-5-4-3-2-1):
1. USC (39 1st place votes) (390)
2. California (323)
3. UCLA (305)
4. Arizona State (242)
5. Oregon State (237)
6. Oregon (226)
7. Arizona (162)
8. Washington State (115)
9. Washington (98)
10. Stanford (47)
Head Coach Mike Stoops
General Remarks: "We are very excited for this day and for our football team. When you look at the entirety of last season, to win six games shows constant growth in our program.
To win some of the games we won, after what our kids went through and then to win our last three road games was good for us. But we didn't finish the way we had liked too. The loss against Arizona State cost us a lot, including a bowl game. Hopefully that will have an impact. Our expectations are much different going into this season. The way we persevered last season, winning against top teams, I think that gives us some legitimate confidence and our work habits really match those expectations.
Our attitude matches our expectations. We are healthy, we have great experience coming back, it is by far and away our most experienced and talented football team."
On the new spread offense: "We are going to implement the whole system. Our biggest challenge will be in utilizing the personnel we have on our team. Whether we go four wides, three wides, we'll have to see. I think the system gives us a unique protection of our quarterback. If we keep Willie [Tuitama] healthy our chance of winning goes up dramatically. All of those things are important to our success."
CB Antoine Cason
On Spencer Larsen: "He brings an intensity to the team. He is a likable guy and he pushes everyone on the team to work as hard as he does, especially this summer. He is a great leader and I feel that Spencer Larsen is one of the most underrated linebackers in the league."
In inconsistencies in the program the last couple of years: "That was a big key of ours that we tried to get away from. We were practicing a lot better later in the season and that helped. Last year will carry over to this year and we will be more consistent as a team."
On being a corner against nine returning QBs: "It's a great challenge to know that everyone is coming back. It brings the best out of me as a player and the best out of them as a player. I like the challenge against every receiver in this league."