9 teams in AP top 25 preseason poll won’t play football this fall

9 teams in AP top 25 preseason poll won’t play football this fall

Nine teams in The Associated Press top 25 preseason poll won't play football this fall, including three among the top 10.

Six Big Ten Conference schools -- No. 2 Ohio State, No. 7 Penn State, No. 12 Wisconsin, No. 16 Michigan, No. 19 Minnesota and No. 24 Iowa -- and three Pacific 12 Conference schools -- No. 9 Oregon, No. 17 Southern California and No. 22 Utah -- will be making their one and only appearance in the rankings during the 2020 season.

That's because the Big Ten and Pac-12 postponed their fall sports seasons indefinitely because of concerns about the coronavirus. Both conferences are eyeing the possibility of playing football in the spring.

All Football Bowl Subdivision teams were eligible for the preseason poll, but after the season starts, only teams scheduled to play in the fall are eligible. That leaves 76 FBS teams from which to choose.

The three remaining Power Five leagues -- the Atlantic Coast Conference, Big 12 Conference and Southeastern Conference -- are forging ahead with football in the fall, albeit with modified schedules.

As a result, several intriguing nonconference games won't be played, including Ohio State at Oregon, No. 10 Notre Dame vs. No. 12 Wisconsin at Lambeau Field in Green Bay, No. 14 Texas at No. 6 Louisiana State and No. 11 Auburn vs. No. 18 North Carolina at Mercedes-Benz Stadium in Atlanta.

Clemson is the preseason No. 1 team for the second consecutive year.

In this Oct. 12, 2019, filer photo, Clemson quarterback Trevor Lawrence celebrates after scoring a touchdown during the first half of a game against Florida State, in Clemson, S.C.
In this Oct. 12, 2019, filer photo, Clemson quarterback Trevor Lawrence celebrates after scoring a touchdown during the first half of a game against Florida State, in Clemson, S.C.

The Tigers finished last season No. 2 after losing the College Football Playoff National Championship to LSU. Clemson, led by quarterback Trevor Lawrence and running back Travis Etienne, will try to become just the third team in history to go wire-to-wire as No. 1, joining Florida State in 1999 and USC in 2004.

Joining Clemson and Ohio State in the top five are No. 3 Alabama, No. 4 Georgia and No. 5 Oklahoma.

Defending national champion LSU opens the season ranked sixth. The Tigers from Louisiana lost Heisman Trophy-winning quarterback Joe Burrow and 13 other players who were selected in the NFL draft.

Florida follows Penn State at No. 8, while Oregon and Notre Dame round out the top 10. The Gators, who are also ranked eighth in the preseason coaches poll, will now open their season Sept. 26 at Mississippi. Their first ranked opponent will be Oct. 10 on the road at No. 13 Texas A&M.

Florida quarterback Kyle Trask scrambles from the pocket against the Georgia defense during the second half their rivalry game, Saturday, Nov. 2, 2019, in Jacksonville, Fla.
Florida quarterback Kyle Trask scrambles from the pocket against the Georgia defense during the second half their rivalry game, Saturday, Nov. 2, 2019, in Jacksonville, Fla.

The SEC leads all conferences with seven teams in the preseason top 25, including six of the first 13 teams.

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