Chris Petersen’s Washington Huskies, Pac-12 champions and a national semifinalist last year, came in at No. 7 in the 2017 preseason coaches poll released Thursday. The Huskies were not the highest-ranked conference team as USC came in at No. 4. The Trojans were also picked to win the league title last week by Pac-12 Conference media members.
Alabama, which defeated Washington in January’s Peach Bowl, received 49 first-place votes from the coaches to top the poll. No. 2 Ohio State received five first-place votes and No. 3 Florida State four.
Defending national champion Clemson received the remainder of the available first place votes, seven, and came in at No. 5. Penn State is No. 6.
The Big Ten has four teams in the top 10 while the Pac-12 and ACC have two each. The SEC has only Alabama, but also has six clubs ranked in the top 25. The Pac-12 has USC, Washington, No. 14 Stanford and No. 25 Utah.
Washington, which does not play USC during the regular season, opens play Sept. 1 at Rutgers, a team Washington beat 48-13 last year in Seattle. The Huskies play their home opener Sept. 9 vs. Montana.
2017 Preseason Coaches Poll
1. Alabama (49 first-place votes)
2. Ohio State (5)
3. Florida State (4)
5. Clemson (7)
6. Penn State
11. Oklahoma State
19. Kansas State
20. West Virginia
21. South Florida
22. Virginia Tech