Oklahoma tops preseason AP football poll

Oklahoma will begin the season as the top- ranked team in the country, as the Sooners sit atop the Associated Press preseason poll released Saturday.

Oklahoma received 36 of 60 first-place votes and 1,464 points to claim the No. 1 spot -- a familiar place for the Sooners. They have been ranked the preseason No. 1 on 10 occasions since 1936, more than any other team.

"It's an honor to be ranked No. 1 any time, but we understand that the preseason ranking means very little compared with what it will mean months from now," said head coach Bob Stoops in a release from the school.

Alabama is ranked second with 17 first-place votes and 1,439 points, while No. 3 Oregon received four first-place tallies. No. 4 LSU has one first-place vote, and No. 5 Boise State received the other two.

Oregon and LSU will provide one of the college football season's best early matchups when they play September 3 at Cowboys Stadium in Arlington, Texas. On the same day, Boise State travels to face Georgia, which is ranked 19th in the preseason poll.

Florida State, Stanford, Texas A&M, Oklahoma State and Nebraska -- which starts its first season in the Big Ten -- round out the top 10.

The second 10 consists of Wisconsin, South Carolina, Virginia Tech, TCU, Arkansas, Notre Dame, Michigan State, Ohio State, Georgia and Mississippi State.

The Buckeyes will begin the post-Jim Tressel era as the 18th-ranked team in the country.

Tressel led Ohio State during a successful 10-year run that included a national title in 2002, seven Big Ten championships and 106 wins. But he resigned May 30 amid allegations he knew about a scandal involving players selling items and memorabilia in violation of NCAA rules.

Quarterback Terrelle Pryor also left the school amid controversy, skipping his senior season. He was due to sit out the first five games of 2011, but opted to leave. Head coach Luke Fickell has taken over the program for 2011.

Missouri, Florida, Auburn, West Virginia and Southern California round out the top 25.

Auburn beat Oregon in last season's BCS National Championship game, but begins this year at No. 23 after quarterback and Heisman Trophy winner Cam Newton left for the NFL.