USA Today came out with its preseason college football poll on Thursday, less than a month before kickoff of the 2012 season. Not surprisingly, the Houston Cougars, who finished 2011 ranked #14 in the coaches poll, had fallen to the ranks of the "receiving votes".
This was commonly expected, given the graduations of Case Keenum, Patrick Edwards, and many more. But given that the Coogs were the only top 25 team from a year ago to not have a single player drafted into the NFL, I (sarcastically) say that they should have moved up, if anything. Clearly (again, sarcasm) they didn't lose much talent.
More notes on the poll, less sarcasm after the jump.
The Cougars came in 14th among "receiving votes", with seven points. That makes them the de facto 39th ranked team, if you choose to look at it that way.
The only UH opponent making an appearance in the poll was Louisiana Tech, who finished just ahead of the Cougars in the RV category, with 10 points. Conference USA programs Southern Miss and Central Florida finished just behind Houston with six and five points, respectively.
That doesn't mean that the Cougars won't have an opportunity to impress the pollsters, however. The coaches of five of Houston's 2012 opponents are on the voting panel, as is Cougar head coach Tony Levine.
The state of Texas did have some representation in the top 25, with Texas-Austin ranked 15th, and TCU ranked 17th. Texas A&M, Baylor, and Texas Tech all finished outside of the top 25, but received votes.
Of course, this is all irrelevant, because the voters always cast aside their pre-season rankings, and begin objectively ranking teams solely based on results as soon as the season beg--hahahahaha, sorry, I almost got that out with a straight face.
For more on the Houston Cougars and the 2012 college football season, check out SB Nation's college football page.