Happy Monday, friends and fans!
The 2020 Preseason AP Top 25 Poll has been released, and the Oklahoma Sooners check in at No. 5 in the first rankings of an unprecedented college football season. Ahead of OU are Clemson, Ohio State, Alabama and Georgia filling out the top five.
BREAKING: Clemson is No. 1 in The Associated Press preseason Top 25; Ohio State, Alabama, Georgia and Oklahoma round out top five.— AP Top 25 (@AP_Top25) August 24, 2020
Full poll: https://t.co/DWCBw9xytP
More AP college football coverage: https://t.co/Fy8sGPLf7y pic.twitter.com/p3e6xxluqe
At first glance, you might be wondering, why are the Buckeyes ranked if the Big Ten Conference isn’t planning on playing football in 2020? Apparently, the associated press is including all FBS leagues in this initial ranking, but following the first weekend of games, the voters will adjust their rankings accordingly to only include teams who are playing this fall.
Barring an upset for the record books, Oklahoma will likely move up a spot by default following its Week 1 contest against Missouri State simply because OSU will be dropped from poll eligibility.
Stay tuned for tomorrow, when the AP will release its 2020 Preseason All-America Teams.
Now onto this week’s Monday edition of Hot Links! Alex Grinch expects this year’s defense to be better than the last, P-Mot picks off Tom Brady again, Luka turns on legendary mode and more!
- Even though it’s the dead period, it was a big weekend on the recruiting front for Lincoln Riley and his Sooners thanks to Caleb Williams and his successful ‘Sooner Summit’. On Sunday night, the fourth-year head coach passed along his famous eye emoji tweet, which should mean there’s a silent OU commit out there waiting to officially pledge their commitment to Oklahoma. Keep in mind that the red ‘O’ emoji signifies a 2021 commit, while the eyes indicate a 2022 commit, so expect an addition to the latter class.
— Lincoln Riley (@LincolnRiley) August 24, 2020
- Speaking of emojis, don’t forget that Riley also dropped a 2021 ‘O’ on Saturday night.
⭕️— Lincoln Riley (@LincolnRiley) August 23, 2020
- Speaking of Williams, the 2021 five-star QB recently caught up with SI Sooners’ Parker Thune to discuss his growing bond with Lincoln Riley and his future OU teammates. Also, nobody likes to lose, but there might not be a player in the class who dislikes losing more than Williams does.
- John Hoover of SI Sooners wrote about the expectations from second-year DC Alex Grinch and his defense that this season’s group will be a stronger unit as a whole than it was in 2019. Considering the team will have to replace standouts like Kenneth Murray, Neville Gallimore and Parnell Motley, that’s saying something.
- Speaking of former Sooner CB Parnell Motley, he continues to make a lot of noise in training camp for the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. How this man actually went undrafted will forever astound me, but the cream always rises to the top. Way to go, P-Mot!
Y’all...undrafted free agent cornerback Parnell Motley just picked Tom Brady off AGAIN. His second pick off Brady in camp. He also had a really nice PBU working against Mike Evans yesterday in the end zone.— JennaLaineESPN (@JennaLaineESPN) August 24, 2020
- In case you missed it, Nike’s latest OU-themed shoe is finally here! I will say, I think this is one of the better designs I’ve seen for a Sooner-specific shoe in some time. Very clean. If you agree, I highly recommend that you check out the new Air Zoom Pegasus 37 as soon as possible so you don’t miss out on these exclusive kicks!
Around the Sports World
- The Dallas Mavericks tied up its NBA Playoff series with the Los Angeles Clippers at 2-2 behind Luka Doncic’s incredible buzzer-beating three-pointer in overtime. Just an amazing shot for the young pro.
- While the Toronto Raptors were busy sweeping the Brooklyn Nets, Raps starting point guard Kyle Lowry suffered a left ankle sprain, causing him to leave Game Four and not return. His status going forward into the upcoming series against the Boston Celtics remains undetermined.
- Speaking of the Nets, the team is reportedly interested in hiring Gregg Popovich away from the San Antonio Spurs as their next head coach. The 71-year-old Pop has been the Spurs’ leader since 1996, but a chance to coach Kevin Durant and Kyrie Irving is an intriguing prospect he might consider.
- Chicago White Sox first baseman Jose Abreu tied an MLB record over the weekend with six home runs in a three-game series versus the Chicago Cubs. Unfortunately, those homers didn’t come with the series win, as the Cubbies finished on top in two out of the three meetings.
- The New England Patriots have signed former Navy DE Paul Quessenberry as a tight end. Not only is this addition unusual because it’s a total change of position, the Midshipman last played football in 2014 before becoming a U.S. Marine. Bill Belichick is one interesting fella, and I’ll never question his judgment.
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