The Iowa Hawkeyes will start the year being ranked 17th in the AP Poll
After being ranked 15th in the Preseason Coaches Poll, the Iowa Hawkeyes got a better look at their chances to make the Playoff this upcoming season as the Associated Press released their preseason rankings. While the AP Poll isn’t used to determine the College Football Playoff, it is a better representation of where teams will be ranked by the committee before that ranking is released.
The Hawkeyes were ranked 15th in the Preseason Coaches Poll, although only managed to garner the 17th spot in the nation to start the year in the AP Poll. It’s still a massive improvement over the start of last year, but it would have been nice to see the Hawkeyes crack the top-15. With that being said, it does put them in a good position to make another run at the College Football Playoff if they were to run the table or only trip up once.
The Hawkeyes were the fourth and final Big Ten team in the top-25 to start the season, and the only from the Big Ten West. Ohio State starts out the year ranked sixth, with Michigan following right behind them at seven. Michigan State is 12th in the nation, however Iowa rounds out a small Big Ten representation in the top-25 to start the year.
While there are teams who have a chance to sneak into the top-25 later this year on Iowa’s schedule, right now the Michigan Wolverines are the only team on their schedule to be ranked to start the year. Despite the Hawkeyes schedule seeming harder this season, it may end up being around the same strength if teams like Wisconsin and Northwestern never crack the rankings – both receiving votes.
We are inching closer and closer to the start of the season, and the Hawkeyes will know what number will be beside their name on TV. While it’s not the top-10 ranking that Hawkeye fans became accustomed to last season, being ranked 17th in the nation does put them in a good position to make a run at the College Football Playoff.