Penn State No. 8 in USA Today Coaches' Poll

Kevin McGuireSenior Analyst IAugust 7, 2009

STATE COLLEGE, PA - NOVEMBER 22:  Jordan Norwood #24 of the Penn State Nittany Lions avoids a tackle by Chris L. Rucker #29 of the Michigan State Spartans on November 22, 2008 at Beaver Stadium in State College, Pennsylvania.  (Photo by Joe Sargent/Getty Images)

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Now we know we are getting closer to the start of the college football season. The USA Today released the first coaches poll this morning, and it came with much anticipation.

Penn State, coming off a Big Ten championship season, is the eighth ranked team in the country  in the poll.  Penn State received 988 votes. Ohio State is ranked sixth with 1,126 votes.

If pre-season polls are any indication, it seems that the Florida Gators will be the team to beat this year. With Tim Tebow leading the charge, the defending national champions received 53 first place votes and are the top ranked team to start. Texas, the second ranked team, received four first place votes. Oklahoma follows at third in the country and one first place vote.  The USC Trojans are the fourth ranked team, picking up the last available first place vote.

Only one other Big Ten team cracked the Top 25; Iowa showed up at No. 21.

Looking for potential BCS busters?  Boise State (No. 16), TCU (No. 17), and Utah (No. 18) are lumped together. Brigham Young is also ranked in the top 25 at No. 24.

Below is the pre-season top 25, with first place votes in parentheses:

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1.  Florida (53)
2.  Texas (4)
3.  Oklahoma (1)
4.  USC (1)
5.  Alabama
6.  Ohio State
7.  Virginia Tech
8.  Penn State
9.  LSU
10. Mississippi
11. Oklahoma State
12. California
13. Georgia
14. Oregon
15. Georgia Tech
16. Boise State
17. TCU
18. Utah
19. Florida State
20. North Carolina
21. Iowa
22. Nebraska
23. Notre Dame
24. Brigham Young
25. Oregon State

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