Football

Hogs ranked in first coaches’ poll of season along with four opponents

Hogs will face four teams that are included in the Top 25 and they are not all in the SEC.

FAYETTEVILLE, Ark. — Arkansas will start the season ranked.

Barely … and not as high as opening opponent.

The Razorbacks were 23rd in the preseason USA TODAY Coaches Poll, the first time they’ve been ranked before the season started since 2015.

The Hogs were No. 20 after an Outback Bowl win over Penn State, so they had the required boost from last season to start ranked this year.

That’s usually the way these things go.

No. 22-ranked Cincinnati will the opening-day opponent on Sept. 3 at Razorback Stadium and that probably shouldn’t be too surprising after they were in the College Football Playoff after the 2021 season.

Six SEC teams were ranked. The usual suspects at the top (Alabama No. 1, Georgia third and Texas A&M at No. 7) aren’t really that surprising.

Kentucky landed at 21 and Ole Miss is No. 24 in the preseason poll.

The Hogs will play four of the teams ranked in the Top 25.

Hogs coach Sam Pittman is one of 66 coaches in the Football Bowl Subdivision that participates in the coaches poll.

Interesting Poll Notes

• Oklahoma’s ranking shows the voting was done before offensive coordinator Cale Gundy was forced to resign Monday. It is the lowest preseason ranking for the Sooners in seven years.

• Texas, the other Big 12 team headed to the SEC at some point over the next few seasons, is ranked No. 18 in the poll. Obviously the coaches think Steve Sarkisian’s rebuild of the Longhorns is farther down the road than most other people.

• The ACC had five teams ranked while the Big Ten and Big 12 each had four teams in the Top 25 and the Pac 12 had three, including USC with first-year coach Lincoln Riley at 15th.

USA TODAY Coaches Poll

  1. Alabama
  2. Ohio State
  3. Georgia
  4. Clemson
  5. Notre Dame
  6. Michigan
  7. Texas A&M
  8. Utah
  9. Oklahoma
  10. Baylor
  11. Oklahoma State
  12. Oregon
  13. North Carolina State
  14. Michigan State
  15. Southern Cal
  16. Pittsburgh
  17. Miami
  18. Texas
  19. Wake Forest
  20. Wisconsin
  21. Kentucky
  22. Cincinnati
  23. Arkansas
  24. Ole Miss
  25. Houston
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