For the first time since 2020, the Nittany Lions will start the season ranked in the top 10 by both major preseason polls. The Lions came at No. 7 in the Coaches Poll just a week ago, and now they are also ranked No. 7 in the preseason AP Poll.
USC sits ahead of Penn State outside of the top five at No. 6, with Florida State, Clemson, and Washington rounding out the top 10.
Wisconsin (No. 19) and Iowa (No. 25) close out the Big Ten contingent in the poll, underscoring the apparent imbalance of the divisions, with the top 3 in the East all in the top 10 of the poll, while the projected top of the West sits at the fringes of the poll. Let’s see if this remains the case come season’s end.
Minnesota and Illinois sit outside the poll, in the “others receiving votes” section. Maryland, a popular sleeper pick, did not receive any votes.
All Big Ten teams will open their season on week 1, as Nebraska and Minnesota kick things off on Thursday, August 31, at 8:00 PM Eastern on Fox. Penn State kicks its season off two days later, also under the lights against West Virginia, game will air on NBC.