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USC is preseason No. 1 in Grantland Rice poll

CBSSports.com staff
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If the 2012 Grantland Rice Super 16 Preseason Poll is correct, the Southeastern Conference will finish out of the top spot for the first time since 2005 and USC will win its sixth Football Writers Association of America national championship.

Grantland Rice Poll
School (FPV)'11 Rec.Pts
1. USC (9)10-2261
2. LSU (4)13-1247
3. Alabama (1)12-1230
4. Oklahoma (1)10-3216
5. Oregon12-2194
6. Florida State (1)9-4180
7. Georgia10-4146
8. Michigan11-2118
9. Wisconsin11-398
10. Arkansas11-296
11. South Carolina11-290
12. West Virginia10-372
13. Texas8-567
14. Clemson10-457
15t. Michigan State11-350
15t. Ohio State6-750

The Trojans, who had to vacate their 2004 FWAA title because of the use of an ineligible player, received 261 poll points and nine first-place votes to outdistance second-place LSU (247). The Tigers, who received four first-place votes, were followed by defending national champion Alabama, Oklahoma and Oregon in the preseason poll conducted among veteran FWAA members.

The SEC has five teams in the Super 16 (LSU, Alabama, Georgia, Arkansas, South Carolina). The Big Ten has four teams, the Big 12 three, the ACC two and the Pac-12 two, including the Trojans.

USC has won FWAA titles in 1962, 1967, 1972, 1974 and 2003. The Trojans were ineligible to participate for the 2010 Grantland Rice Trophy. Oklahoma was predicted to win the trophy last season, but Alabama, No. 2 in the FWAA's preseason poll, won the title.

Texas, in 2005, was the last team outside the SEC to claim the Grantland Rice Trophy. Since then Florida (2006, 2008); Alabama (2009, 2011); LSU (2007) and Auburn (2010) have won the FWAA's national title.

The 2012 Grantland Rice Trophy will be awarded by a vote of selected board members and past presidents of the association after the Discover BCS National Championship Game. It will be presented to the FWAA's national champion the morning after the BCS title game in South Florida. The Grantland Rice Trophy, given to college football's national champion since 1954, is named in memory of the legendary sportswriter. It was the first national championship award presented after college football's postseason

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