Oklahoma picked as No. 1 in USA Today/ESPN Preseason Top 25 Poll

Friday, August 1st 2003, 12:00 am
By: News On 6

Oklahoma nudged out defending national champion Ohio State for No. 1 in the preseason USA Today-ESPN coaches college football poll released Thursday.

The Sooners, who beat Washington State 34-14 in the Rose Bowl to finish 12-2 and ranked No. 5 last season, received 29 first-place votes and 1,514 points.

Ohio State got 28 first-place votes and had 1,495 points. The Buckeyes beat Miami 31-24 in double overtime in the Fiesta Bowl to cap a 14-0 season.

Miami was ranked third in the preseason poll with five No. 1 votes and 1,448 points, followed by Texas and Kansas State. Auburn received the only other first-place vote and was sixth, with Michigan, Southern California, Georgia and Virginia Tech rounding out the top 10.

Oklahoma State was ranked 24th in the poll and received 159 points.

The Cowboys ended the 2002 season with an 8-5 record and a 33-23 victory over Southern Mississippi in the Houston Bowl. One of OSU's victories last year came against Oklahoma.

The preseason Associated Press media poll will be released Aug. 16.