Three Big Ten teams appear in AP preseason poll

August, 22, 2009
8/22/09
2:08
PM ET

Posted by ESPN.com's Adam Rittenberg

The AP preseason poll is out, and there are few major surprises, from the team on top to the three Big Ten squads included in the rundown.

Defending national champ Florida received 58 of 60 first-place votes and leads off the rankings ahead of Texas, which got the other two first-place votes. 

Ohio State comes in at No. 6, while Penn State appears tied with Oklahoma State at No. 9. Iowa rounds out the Big Ten contingent at No. 22. Those rankings seem about right to me. I had Iowa a few spots higher in the ESPN Power Rankings, but the knee injury to running back Jewel Hampton creates a bit more anxiety about the Hawkeyes.

Illinois finished 27th in the voting, two spots ahead of Michigan State. The hype around Illinois continues to grow, largely because of what Ron Zook has coming back on offense. I'm a little more hesitant to buy in after last year's struggles, but Illinois certainly has the talent to perform well this fall. 

Northwestern received five votes in the poll, putting the Wildcats at No. 44. Michigan didn't receive an AP preseason vote for the first time in recent memory. 

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