Projecting the preseason AP Top 25, eight SEC teams projected to be ranked


College football insider Phil Steele recently projected what he thinks the AP Top 25 will look like come August. You can watch the video on ESPN here.

RELATED: SDS’ way-too-early top 25

The projection includes eight SEC teams, and that would equal an SEC record last October that also featured eight top 25 teams. Alabama, Auburn and South Carolina are all projected to be top 10 teams, followed by Georgia, LSU, Missouri, Texas A&M and Ole Miss.

Several way-too-early top 25 rankings included Florida near the bottom of other rankings, too.

Here’s a look at Steele’s projected preseason top 25:

RELATED: Way-too-early SEC West predictions 2014

1. FSU
2. Alabama
3. Oregon
4. Auburn
5. Oklahoma
6. Ohio State
8. Michigan State
9. Baylor
10. South Carolina
11. Georgia
12. Stanford
13. LSU
14. USC
15. Notre Dame
16. Clemson
17. Wisconsin
18. Missouri
19. Texas A&M
20. Ole Miss
21. Texas
22. Washington
23. North Carolina
24. UCF
25. Louisville

RELATED: Way-too-early SEC East predictions 2014



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  • I’m a huge Bama fan, and i’m surprised to see them at #2 and OU still at #5. I figured they would be at about #4. But hey then again Oregon is at #3.

  • I hope Bama and my Auburn Tigers do as well as this prediction, but I think Bama has some pretty big holes to fill, AJ is the biggest, and my Tigers are unpredictable, even with Marshall and so many returning players. We will see if defenses can adjust to the Gus Bus this year with his first returning college QB ever. Personally, I thin #4 is too high. War Eagle.

    A&M without Manziel and Missouri without Franklin, plus some of the great receivers they threw to may be in for a very rude awakening.

    Georgia and SC seem about right. I hope Ole Miss does that well, that would be really cool.

    • Missouri played some great games without Franklin, Mauk will do a good job.
      Sad that DGB couldn’t keep his nose clean but they still picked up some good kids including a couple 4 stars.
      Everyone is underestimating Mizzou again, that’s the way they like it.

      • A little disrespect , that’s all we ask.

        • this cracks me up, thanks

        • You lost like 80% of your receiving and haven’t been quite a recruiting powerhouse. It’s not disrespect, it’s logic. Until they prove their going to compete with all they lost, they’re going to be lower than the rest. That being said, I like Mizzou being an underdog, makes for some upsets, and that’s always fun to watch. From an S.Car fan.

        • Robert, the sad thing is it’s really bad “logic” about Mizzou’s WR’s. We will start Sassar (a senior who has played a lot), White (a senior 4* who has played quite a bit) and Hunt (another senior 4* who had gotten a good amount of PT). We will also play Copelin, J’Mon Moore and Brown at WR, all of whom were highly sought after. We’ve been recruiting just fine, especially at WR so your critique is uninformed.

    • I find this hilarious. Now that the season’s over and people are debating whether Alabama should be ahead of Auburn it’s “Bama has some big holes to fill, AJ is the biggest.”, yet last season when it came Heisman time and everyone was deciding how much credit he deserved it was “Alabama is a running back school. Any old QB could do that well with all the people around him.”

  • my total guess as good as anyone else’s: FSU, Auburn, tie Missouri-SouthCarolina, Oklahoma, Stanford, Oklahoma State, Alabama, Georgia, LSU, Michigan State, Baylor, Oregon. Everyone else has too much to prove even be wild guessed at.

    • Ole Miss is going to easily be a top 15 team this season. Ole Miss will be loaded with talent and experience. Plus they return a 2 year starter at QB.

      • As much as I would love to agree with you, you can’t really say, “easily” about the SEC or Ole Miss. We’re gonna have a hard time, just as anybody else in the conference. But hey, I’d love to see it too!

      • I would expect nothing less than this statement out of you 007. However just being mentioned in the top 25 is a stretch but to say they easily top 15 is just beyond crazy.

      • If Ole Miss were to make the top 15, this will be the year for it. Lots of questions on the other powerhouse teams, and Ole Miss is stacked more than ever. However, anyone who has kept up with Ole Miss football knows, It’s a roller coaster ride for sure.

  • I don’t think FSU and AUburn will stay in the Top 10 very long as FSU has a real schedule this year and Auburn was flat out lucky as crap last year. That isn’t going to happen this year.

    • You can’t be serious…

    • Auburn was lucky in making it to the national championship, but Auburn got to that point because they were good.

      • I think we can all admit Yes Auburn made the National Championship but we can all easily admit they had a lot of luck getting there….but all and all they deserved to be there they earned it…but yes the kick-six lucky….the bomb against Georgia lucky….if just one of those miracle plays didn’t happen auburn would of been looking from the outside in the sugar bowl

      • Good isn’t the appropriate term. Auburn did ‘good’ to be in position for ‘lucky’ plays to occur and give them the W. Iron bowl should have been an OT game, UGA @ AU…that was lucky as well. They looked good at times, but I’m definitely not impressed by Nick Marshals talent as a QB. I don’t see them getting so lucky next year, and you’d best believe that everyone is studying that triple option.

      • Yes, and they were primarily good because they had Tre Mason to shoulder the load. Now that he’s gone, their leading rushing offense is their QB, and a second string RB who only had 1/3 of Mason’s yardage and only six touchdowns.

    • FSU will not repeat Auburn maybe but the sec west is so stocked with talent and good teams that you never know what could happen

  • I know it’s “Way to Early” but Steele loses credibility with this one. Numbers one and two should be FSU and Auburn respectively. FSU is the reigning champion and Auburn is the runner up and reigning SEC champion. Alabama lost to both Auburn and Oklahoma. The latter being in the Sugar Bowl. Not to mention, Alabama must field a new QB, new OC, and fill holes on a defense that may not be as stout as last season. Oregon must prove it deserves to be in the top ten.

    • Read the first sentence again. This isn’t Steele’s personal opinion or rankings, this is how he projects the AP poll will look like to start the season. Last year his AP prediction was not in the exact order, but he had the same 25 teams that were actually in the AP poll. This is his prediction of how the AP voters will vote. So a prediction of someone else’s poll. Somewhat meaningless. Steele will put his own rankings out closer to the season. I listened to Steele talk about this stuff, he puts a lot of research into it and seems like a smart guy.

    • What you did last season is only part of the equation. The way this is decided is “What your team did last year, and how much of that team is coming back.” Auburn loses their leading rusher, leading defensive back, best O-lineman… and Alabama’s skill players are mostly returning underclassmen.

  • WOW !! That top 5 took a lot of guts. The miracles ran out with Auburn in the NC. They will not even win the SEC West. In my opinion. LSU, UGA, ALA, poss Mizzou & A&M have better teams than Auburn. FSU playing in the lame ACC might not be a longshot.

    • I agree with all of that except A&M. A&M will be a laugher this year. I hate to say it but Manziel honestly carried them through a ton of games last year. With no defense in sight, they’re hopeless.

  • I’m sorry. Georgia was an 8-5 team last year with probably the most incapable defense in school history. That’s not top 25 material. A new QB and a lot of new people on defense, new d coach or not, doesn’t add up to #11. Maybe after six games and a 5-1 record, maybe then. But they have to prove it first.

    • Gary, you’re right, last year we were not a top 25 team. But, that was last year. Our QB is not exactly “new” given that this will be his 5th year in the system and that he has started two games, leading a decent comeback in one of those games on the road. You also failed to do your homework on our defense, because we don’t have “a lot of new people.” We lost Garrison Smith to graduation and JHC to THC. Other than that, everybody else important is returning this year.
      All of that said, you’re right in that we have to prove we belong in the top 10 or even 25, for that matter. Nevertheless, putting us at 11 is entirely reasonable despite our performance last year and a new QB.

      • Those same players that have been around and you claim aren’t new, well they went 8-5 last year…… soooo im confused as to how you think a number 11 ranking is going to be reasonable.

        • Well, there are these little things called “experience” and “rhythm” that can have a huge impact on how a football team does. With almost the entire cast of starters returning, including the injured players, we have a lot of experience coming back and, having mostly worked together for over an entire year, there’s a good chance they’ve gelled and are in sync with each other. Then, there’s this slightly more important thing called “coaching” which the defense sorely lacked last year, but which they should now have.
          Look, I am not claiming UGA will come out and dominate. They could go 7-6 for all I know. But, they also have a ton of potential, which is why I have seen them favored over your cocks in the SEC East in some predictions. Preseason rankings are meaningless in the end anyway, but to say UGA is the 11th best team in the country is plenty reasonable. If you think otherwise, you are not very intelligent.

        • Yeah, you want to question my intelligence over the internet. See you in Columbia fool. Maybe it won’t take 58 minutes for ya’ll to score a point in Willy B this year, but then again maybe it will. Mason needs two OT’s just to beat tech. TECH.

        • Umm, yes, I am questioning your intelligence over the internet. It’s one of the few things one can actually gauge via comments people make. You make stupid comments, then you are probably stupid.
          At any rate, Columbia is a tough place to play and, unlike you did with UGA, I won’t act like SCar doesn’t have the players to reload despite losing one of the best QBs to play at SCar since maybe Steve Taneyhill, a once in a decade talent in Clowney (although he certainly didn’t put forth the effort at times his senior year) and other talented players, like Sutton and Quarles. We shall see. Hopefully, it’ll be a good one.

  • LSU is the biggest question on this list for me. Alabama always musters the talent and fills in the holes, but LSU is looking very unimpressive going into the 2014 season.

  • Surprise surprise Oregon is in the preseason top 5…let me make an easy prediction….. they will not be in the top 5 by the end of the season….they are always blown up in the preseason only to fall short every year loosing to a sub par team

  • On offense the Gamecocks are solid . The Defense has great LBs, and Jordan Diggs at Spur is a lock for 1st team. The secondary is the major question! Will likely have some freshman mixed in . Have a few top notch recruits that will need to step up & in to the frey!

    • But the 2015 class is already a top ten if we land a certain duel threat QB, the sky’s the limit

      • Connor Mitch is the next QB. Hands down. Even with a top dual-threat QB coming in or not. I think Mitch has the most upside of any QB SC has recruited since Garcia, and regardless, he was a good QB just lacked consistency and maturity. I’m looking forward to him slinging it for the Gamecocks.


  • I really can’t agree with all the rankings. Oregon at 3? Bama at 2? They deserve top 10 but not top 5, and USC shouldn’t be near that high. I just don’t understand the rankings.

  • I’ve seen 6 different pre-season polls and while all of them have different teams in differing order, there is one thing that becomes ever so obvious, and that is none of the authors of these polls can accurately state which team is going to be where….the titles should be changed to the “Guess Polls”. At least then there would be one accurate part of the polls, and that would be the title.

  • Washington shouldn’t be in the top 25 as they are now basically Boise State 2.0. Their recruiting is at the level of BSU and everyone will now see that Petersen is a way overrated coach, His record looks good because he played a joke of a schedule EVERY year at BSU. At Washington he will be playing more than one ranked team a year (he plays three ranked teams in 2014 that will totally own him. The first four games of the season are a Boise State type schedule.

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