The USA Today/Coaches Poll got things rolling on the preseason rankings train earlier in the month, but now the AP has joined them, releasing their own Top 25 poll ahead of the college football season (less than two weeks away now!).
As with the Coaches Poll, Iowa will enter the 2014 season unranked in the AP Poll. Iowa's a little too underground, hanging out in Others Receiving Votes, to join the mainstream squares in the Top 25. The ink-stained wretches that populate the AP Poll do seem to have a slightly higher opinion of the Hawkeyes than the coaches, though -- Iowa was 33rd in the Coaches Poll, but they're 30th in the AP Poll. The full poll is below.
|1||Florida State (57)||1,496|
|Others receiving votes: UCF 94, Florida 87, Texas 86, Duke 71, Iowa 68, Louisville 48, Marshall 41, Oklahoma State 37, Virginia Tech 26, TCU 23, Mississippi State 22, Michigan 19, Texas Tech 19, Miami (FL) 16, Cincinnati 15, Boise State 10, Oregon State 10, Northwestern 8, BYU 8, Penn State 5, Vanderbilt 2, Navy 2, Nevada 1, Louisiana-Lafayette 1, Utah State 1|
As with the Coaches Poll, just two of Iowa's 2014 opponents are ranked here: #14 Wisconsin and #22 Nebraska. Only one of Iowa's other opponents is even receiving votes (Northwestern), but perhaps someone like Maryland or Minnesota will surge into the rankings this fall.
The nice thing about the AP Poll versus the Coaches Poll is that the AP Poll ballots are public (what a shocking idea)*. This allows us to see how all 60 pollsters voted. I was particularly interested in seeing who voted for Iowa in this poll and where they placed Iowa. 16 of the 60 voters put Iowa in their Top 25, with the most common ranking being #25 (5 votes). The average spot for Iowa among those 16 ballots was #22. No one was higher on Iowa than Doug Doughty of the Roanake (Va) Times, who slotted Iowa in at #14. Clearly Mr. Doughty is a big believer in GO IOWA AWESOME.
Jon Wilner of the San Jose (Calif.) Mercury News plugged Iowa in at #20, but his ballot was more notable for his overall B1G love -- he had three teams, Ohio State, Michigan State, and Wisconsin in his Top 10. Finally, I was amused to compare the ballots of Steve Batterson of the Quad City Times (the closest thing Iowa has to a home-town vote in the AP Poll) and Steve Sipple of the Lincoln (NE) Journal (the home-town vote for Nebraska in the AP Poll).
Batterson: Iowa (#25)
Sipple: Nebraska (#15)
Homer votes? In Nebraska? Surely not. (In fairness, Sipple did vote Iowa #21.)
* For some reason, individual AP ballots don't appear to be accessible this morning. They were accessible yesterday, which is when I pulled this information.