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A History of OSU’s Ranking in the Preseason AP Top 25 Poll and What It Suggests of 2022

OSU has a checkered history after being ranked inside the preseason top 15.



Devin Wilber/PFB

The preseason AP Top 25 college football poll was released on Monday, where Oklahoma State came in with its highest ranking — No. 12 — in the preseason poll since 2017.

The Cowboys came in behind Big 12 foes OU and Baylor in the ranking but still garnered immense respect on the whole. It’s the sixth time since Mike Gundy was head coach that OSU will enter the season inside the top 15 of the rankings.

OSU should be set for success this season behind a four-year starter at QB, a revamped offensive line and a veteran-heavy defensive line. However, history is a bit shaky for the Pokes when they have gotten this level of accolades this early. Of the five previous times OSU was a preseason top-15 team under Gundy — 2020, 2017, 2013, 2011 and 2009 — four of the instances resulted in OSU finishing the season either unranked or ranked lower than the preseason. The only anomaly came in 2011 when it opened the season No. 9, climbed to as high as No. 2 and finished No. 3. (Scholars still argue to this day that Justin Blackmon and Brandon Weeden would have torched both of LSU and Alabama and won the title, if given the opportunity that year. But I digress.)

Here’s a look at the history for OSU dating all the way back to 2009.

YearPreseasonFinishSeason High
2021Unranked75 (Week 14)
202015206 (Weeks 7 and 8)
2019UnrankedUnranked22 (Week 14)
2018UnrankedUnranked15 (Week 4)
201710146 (Week 3)
2016211110 (Week 12)
2015Unranked204 (Week 11)
2014UnrankedUnranked15 (Week 7)
201313176 (Week 14)
201219Unranked18 (Week 1)
2011932 (Weeks 10 and 11)
2010Unranked1310 (Week 12)
20099Unranked5 (Week 1)

OSU has plenty of holes to fill to outperform its preseason ranking, as it has done six times since 2010, but the path is absolutely there.

“Everything is going well at this time,” Gundy said last week at his media day. “We’ve got a long way to go, but we’ve got a good group as I mentioned earlier. I’m excited. I like what I see with the coaching, the interaction with the players, guys’ effort, responsibility, the loyalty to each other and their team. I’m excited about where we’re at, but we’ve got a lot of work ahead of us.”

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