It's the first time since 1998 that the Rams have started the year in the AP rankings. That season, they began with an eye-opening 23-16 win at Michigan State, before being thumped 42-14 by Colorado. They finished the season 8-4 and unranked.
CSU is the only Mountain West Conference school to be ranked by either poll in the pre-season. The Rams open the 2001 season on September 1st at Invesco Field against CU.