A pair of SEC rivals took the top two spots in USA Today's preseason college football coaches poll, which was released today.
LSU is No. 1 with 18 first-place votes, while Alabama check in at No. 2. The Crimson Tide earned 20 first-place votes — the most of any team. It’s the first time since 1991 that the first-place team did not receive the most first-place votes. The last time was in 1999 with Florida State and Tennessee. The Seminoles went on to win the national championship.
This season marks just the second time in the BCS' existence that the two teams that played in the previous season’s title game have been ranked 1st and 2nd. In that game, Alabama shut out then-undefeated LSU, 21-0.
"We are fortunate to be at a place that allows you to compete for that [No. 1] spot," LSU coach Les Miles told the USA Today in a statement. "We recognize that [the No. 1 ranking] is more of a reflection of a body of work and understand that right now, it's a spot that we hold and not one that has been earned. It's a position that we enjoy. Now we have to go out and play in order to keep it."
After the SEC combo at the top of the polls comes Southern California. Voting was final before Penn State running back Silas Redd announced he would transfer to USC. The Trojans received 19 first-place votes. They are followed by last season’s preseason No. 1, Oklahoma, and Oregon.
Check out the entire preseason poll here: