RALEIGH — The ACC has two teams ranked in the top 10 of the Associated Press preseason poll for the second straight year and just the tenth time in league history.
Florida State is ranked third overall, with four first place votes. The Seminoles, favored to win the ACC this year, placed behind Ohio State and Alabama, who is the top-rated team in the preseason for the second straight season.
The defending national champion Clemson Tigers are in fifth place, just behind USC. This is only the second time in ACC history that two teams are ranked in the top five of the preseason poll. Clemson was second and Florida State fourth a year ago.
Also representing the ACC are Louisville, which placed 16th, Coastal Division favorite Miami, who was in 18th, and last season’s Coastal champions, Virginia Tech, 21st.
NC State received 26 points in the poll, placing it outside the Top 25, in the “others receiving votes” category. The Pack had the 30th highest point total in the poll and could move into the Top 25 with a fast start to the season.
The Wolfpack last appeared in the AP Top 25 at the end of the 2010 season. This is the third-longest Top 25 drought for NC State since the poll went to 25 teams in 1967. The Pack were left out of the Top 25 for seven years and six days, from 1979 to 1986, and State had a seven year, 18-day drought from 2003 to 2010.
It’s the first time NC State has received poll votes since last October. State received nine poll points in the Oct. 10 poll, after beating Notre Dame at Carter-Finley Stadium. The Pack took Clemson to overtime in Death Valley the following week and received four poll points. After losing to Louisville the following week, NC State didn’t receive another poll vote for the rest of the season.
The 26 poll points were the most for NC State since the Pack finished in 25th place in the season-ending 2010 poll, with 119 points.
The other in-state ACC teams—Duke, UNC and Wake Forest—did not receive any votes in the preseason poll. It’s the first time State has finished with more votes than its three in-state rivals since the 2015 preseason poll, when the Pack earned four poll points while the other three teams were shut out.
East Carolina was also shut out of the preseason poll. The only other team in the state to receive any poll votes was Appalachian State. The Mountaineers received four poll points, tied for the 39th most in the preseason poll. Perennial powerhouse Nebraska also received four points, as did Tulsa.
It’s the best showing in the AP poll for App State since the Mountaineers finished with seven points in the season-ending poll of the 2015 season. App had a 10-3 season last year and finished with a Camellia Bowl victory but were surprisingly shut out of the season-ending poll.