With Fall Camps about to start up all around college football, it's a reminder that the 2014 season is just around the corner. One of the first major mileposts on the way to the season starting happened this morning when USA Today published the first coaches poll for the 2014 season. Our own college football experts at SBN weighed in with their thoughts, and one important takeaway from that is the reminder that the coaches poll is now nothing more than cosmetic - it has no official connection to the playoff committee seedings. It does however still determine who receives the "crystal ball" trophy.
It shouldn't be terribly surprising to see that this first poll for 2014 bears a strong resemblance to the final poll from 2013, with defending champs Florida State topping the list followed by Alabama, Oklahoma, Oregon and Auburn. Washington just cracks the list at #25. They were unranked in the final USA Today poll for 2013, but they did finish #25 in the final AP poll and were likely somewhere near the top of the "Others receiving votes" category.
With the high-profile losses of Bishop Sankey, Austin Seferian-Jenkins and Keith Price from the roster, it's not a big surprise that Washington just cracks this poll. In fact, you could see this as an endorsement of Chris Petersen by his fellow coaches (note that Petersen himself has a vote in the poll this year), as typically teams don't lose players like that and then rise in the polls, if even just a small amount.
Here is the full poll.
|RANK||TEAM||RECORD||POINTS||FIRST PLACE VOTES||PREVIOUS RANK|
|1||Florida State Seminoles||14-0||1543||56||NR|
|2||Alabama Crimson Tide||11-2||1455||NR|
|6||Ohio State Buckeyes||12-2||1267||1||NR|
|8||Michigan State Spartans||13-1||1050||NR|
|9||South Carolina Gamecocks||11-2||1009||1||NR|
|17||Notre Dame Fighting Irish||9-4||509||NR|
|18||Arizona State Sun Devils||10-4||358||NR|
|20||Texas A&M Aggies||9-4||266||NR|
|21||Kansas State Wildcats||8-5||257||NR|
|23||North Carolina Tar Heels||7-6||175||NR|
Others Receiving Votes:
Missouri 126; Florida 122; Central Florida 102; Mississippi State 74; Oklahoma State 56; TCU 54; Michigan 53; Iowa 49; Miami (Fla.) 45; Duke 41; Louisville 32; Marshall 27; Brigham Young 18; Boise State 13; Louisiana-Lafayette 12; Virginia Tech 12; Texas Tech 8; Minnesota 6; Cincinnati 6; Northwestern 5; Oregon State 4; Fresno State 4; GeorgiaTech 2; Houston 2; Arkansas 1; Arizona 1; Northern Illinois 1.
Scanning the list, Washington comes in as the 6th Pac-12 team in the top-25, attesting to the respect the league has entering the season. Only the SEC boasts more in the list with seven. Besides Oregon at #4, there's UCLA riding the off-season hype wave at #7, Stanford at #11 despite heavy losses from their defense, USC at #15 and ASU at #18.
So what say you Husky fans - is #25 too low? Too high? Just right? Tell us what you think...