The Football Championship Subdivision (FCS) Coaches Poll was released today and to no one's surprise, the Colonial Athletic Association (CAA) had the most teams ranked in the Top 25 preseason poll with six schools. This marks a 15th consecutive poll that the CAA has had six teams ranked.
Georgia State, beginning its first and only season of CAA play before moving up to the Football Bowl Subdivision (FBS) level next year, will play eight CAA games this season. Four of those eight CAA opponents are ranked in this preseason Top 25 poll.
Georgia State will face No. 6 Old Dominion in the Georgia Dome on Nov. 3 and No. 12 New Hampshire in the Dome on Oct. 6. The Panthers will make road trips at No. 8 James Madison on Oct. 27 and No. 16 Maine in the season-ending game on Nov. 10.
The two other CAA schools ranked in the preseason Top 25 are Towson at No. 9 and Delaware at No. 14. The six ranked this year all finished in the Top 25 at the end of last year. The team ranked No. 1 this year's preseason poll is last year's national champion, North Dakota State.
While they are not currently ranked, two CAA opponents Georgia State will face this year have won national championships in the past five years. The inaugural CAA foe on Sept. 22 at the Dome, the Richmond Spiders, won the 2008 national title. The Oct. 20 Homecoming game for GSU comes against the 2009 national champion Villanova Wildcats.
Georgia State opens the season August 30 against a tough 7-4 South Carolina State program that has turned out more than 40 NFL players in its proud history. In week two, GSU journeys into SEC territory at the 100,000-seat Neyland Stadium to battle the Tennessee Vols. Tennessee had five players picked to the All-SEC preseason team, indicating improvement for Coach Derek Dooley's team. The third and final non-CAA game is a home evening re-match with the UTSA, who are playing their first Conference USA FBS-level schedule.
This third-ever Georgia State season will also be veteran coach Bill Curry's final season as the five-year founder of the program has announced he will retire from coaching at the end of this season after his 70th birthday in October.
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