A record No. 12 for Gamecocks
COLUMBIA -- South Carolina is ranked No. 12 in the preseason Associated Press college football poll released Saturday. The previous best August ranking for the Gamecocks was No. 17 in 1970.
But head coach Steve Spurrier did not seem convinced after his offense struggled during a scrimmage Saturday at Williams-Brice Stadium.
"We were No. 7 in another (2011 preseason) poll," Spurrier said. "I tried to tell our guys we're probably an overrated bunch of dudes right now."
Spurrier particularly was disappointed in quarterback Stephen Garcia and poor center snaps from the shotgun formation.
"You guys watched him play," Spurrier said of Garcia. "The whole offense wasn't very good."
But the defense was stellar.
And No. 12 is not bad.
No. 1 Oklahoma received 36 of 60 first-place votes in the AP poll, and the Southeastern Conference, shooting for a sixth consecutive national championship, has a record eight teams in the top 25.
The SEC roll call along with South Carolina includes No. 2 Alabama, No. 4 LSU, No. 15 Arkansas, No. 19 Georgia, No. 20 Mississippi State, No. 22 Florida and No. 23 Auburn, the defending national champs.
Oregon is No. 3, Boise State No. 5 and Stanford No. 7.
Oregon faces LSU in an opening game in Dallas.
Boise State opens against Georgia at the Georgia Dome.
The ACC is represented by Florida State at No. 6 and Virginia Tech at No. 13. Also in the top 10 are Texas A&M at No. 8, Oklahoma State at No. 9 and Nebraska at No. 10.
No. 16 Notre Dame is ranked for the first time since early November 2009.
Other highlights: No. 18 Ohio State coming off a trouble summer, No. 14 TCU preparing for a move to the Big East next season and No. 25 Southern Cal trying to bounce back from the Reggie Bush scandal.
Clemson did not receive any votes.