College Football Rankings 2014: Final Overview of Preseason NCAA Polls

Brian MaziqueCorrespondent IIIAugust 30, 2014

Georgia running back Todd Gurley (3) runs for yardage during the first half of the Gator Bowl NCAA college football game against Nebraska, Wednesday, Jan. 1, 2014, in Jacksonville, Fla. (AP Photo/Stephen B. Morton)
Stephen B. Morton/Associated Press

It hasn't taken long for college football to regain its spot on the country's sports radar. Things have gotten off to a fast and fun-filled start.

The No. 9-ranked South Carolina Gamecocks have already been upset, and it's just the first week of a brand new college football season. The No. 21-ranked Texas A&M Aggies don't look to be missing a beat after Johnny Manziel made the jump to the NFL.

Sophomore Kenny Hill went bananas on the Gamecocks on Thursday night with a school-record 511 passing yards in a 52-28 Aggies' win. No. 18 Mississippi, No. 19 Arizona State and No. 8 Michigan State all won in early Week 1 action.

Here's one final look at the preseason polls before the first in-season update on Monday, per ESPN.com.

 

AP Top 25
RankTeamRecordPoints
1Florida State (57)0-01496
2Alabama (1)0-01361
3Oregon (1)0-01334
4Oklahoma (1)0-01324
5Ohio State0-01207
6Auburn0-01198
7UCLA0-01106
8Michigan State1-01080
9South Carolina0-11015
10Baylor0-0966
11Stanford0-0885
12Georgia0-0843
13LSU0-0776
14Wisconsin0-0637
15USC0-0626
16Clemson0-0536
17Notre Dame0-0445
18Ole Miss1-0424
19Arizona State1-0357
20Kansas State0-0242
21Texas A&M1-0238
22Nebraska0-0226
23North Carolina0-0194
24Missouri0-0134
25Washington0-0130

 

Other Teams That Could Lose to Lower or Unseeded Squads in Week 1

No. 12 Georgia Bulldogs

CLEMSON, SC - SEPTEMBER 7: Cole Stoudt #18 of the Clemson Tigers drops back for a pass during the game against the South Carolina State Bulldogs at Memorial Stadium on September 7, 2013 in Clemson, South Carolina. (Photo by Tyler Smith/Getty Images)
Tyler Smith/Getty Images

The Georgia Bulldogs and No. 16 Clemson Tigers renew season-opening acquaintances this year without a few familiar faces. 

Aaron Murray and Tajh Boyd are no longer the men under center, and Sammy Watkins won't be dazzling fans of college football this year.

Even with the departures of those outstanding players, both the Bulldogs and Tigers have a good sum of returning talent. Georgia is returning 15 of its 22 starters from last season, and that includes preseason Heisman Trophy candidate Todd Gurley.

Clemson only has 11 returning starters, but four of them are on the defensive line.

The team will be without Corey Crawford. The defensive end was suspended for a game for infractions earlier in the year.

Even without him, the Tigers D-line could give Gurley and the Bulldogs offensive line a problem. Grady Jarrett and Vic Beasley are a handful, and if they can help win the battle upfront, the Tigers have a good chance to pull the upset.

Senior quarterback Cole Stoudt finally has the chance to step out of Boyd's shadow, and he and his teammates seem prepared to make a name for themselves.

Per Associated Press (h/t Fox News), Stoudt talked about the mentality of his teammates on the offensive side of the ball:

"They came into fall camp with different edge because nobody was talking about the guys that are here." 

With a spirited performance from Stoudt and Co., Clemson could grab a huge win on the road in Week 1.

 

No. 13 LSU Tigers

Nov 30, 2013; Madison, WI, USA; Wisconsin Badgers running back Melvin Gordon (25) rushes for yardage as Penn State Nittany Lions cornerback Trevor Williams (10) defends  at Camp Randall Stadium. Penn State defeated Wisconsin 31-24. Mandatory Credit: Mary
USA TODAY Sports

Normally losing to a team ranked just one notch below wouldn't be that big of a deal, but because LSU hasn't lost a regular-season non-conference game in 12 years, a loss to No. 14 Wisconsin would be noteworthy.

The game will be held at NRG Stadium in Houston, Texas. The Tigers' fans figure to travel well, but it still won't be the same as playing in Baton Rouge.

LSU is returning only 13 starters from last year's squad, and more importantly, there's a lack of experience at quarterback. Sophomore Anthony Jennings is the man for LSU, but is he prepared to be thrown into the fire this early in the season? 

The Badgers won't exactly have a wealth of experience at quarterback themselves. Converted safety/wide receiver Tanner McEvoy will get the nod for Wisconsin.

Because of the lack of experience at quarterback, the winner of this game could be determined by the squad that is best able to establish the run.

There are two very good running backs in this one. Wisconsin's Melvin Gordon could be considered a dark horse for the Heisman. He was second in the Big Ten last season in rushing.

Gordon figures to be the focal point of Wisconsin's attack. Highly touted freshman Leonard Fournette is set to get his first college carries for LSU. This should be a good, old-fashioned competition between two storied programs.