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FCS college football rankings: North Dakota State #1, Villanova #4 in STATS preseason poll

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Can the games start already?

Rich Barnes-USA TODAY Sports

The FCS media FCS Preseason poll, now hosted by STATS, dropped on Monday. To nobody's surprise, North Dakota State was a unanimous overwhelming pick as the top team in the country collecting 144 of the 147 media votes. The 2015 National Champion runner-up, Illinois State is ranked second.

Villanova came in at #4, higher than their #7 ranking at the end of last season after bowing out in the quarterfinals to Sam Houston State who will start the season at #3.

The CAA is expected to have another strong season and it's reflected in this preseason poll. New Hampshire (#9) joins Villanova in the Top 10 while James Madison (#12) and Richmond (#18) also make an appearance. William & Mary, Maine and Towson also received some votes, but didn't make the Top 25. Fordham, Villanova's week two opponent, was also ranked at #20.

Andy Talley's Wildcats, who were posted at #3 in the FCS Coaches Poll, will open the 2015 season on the road against UConn on Thursday, September 3rd.

STATS FCS Preseason Poll

Rank School Votes Prev
1 North Dakota State (0-0) 3671 (144) NR
2 Illinois State (0-0) 3423 (3) NR
3 Sam Houston State (0-0) 3264 NR
4 Villanova (0-0) 3249 NR
5 Coastal Carolina (0-0) 2900 NR
6 Eastern Washington (0-0) 2830 NR
7 Jacksonville State (0-0) 2705 NR
8 Chattanooga (0-0) 2590 NR
9 New Hampshire (0-0) 2570 NR
10 UNI (0-0) 2212 NR
11 Montana State (0-0) 2038 NR
12 James Madison (0-0) 1766 NR
13 Montana (0-0) 1710 NR
14 Youngstown State (0-0) 1662 NR
15 Liberty (0-0) 1623 NR
16 South Dakota State (0-0) 1390 NR
17 Eastern Kentucky (0-0) 1073 NR
18 Richmond (0-0) 1016 NR
19 Southeastern Louisiana (0-0) 791 NR
20 Fordham (0-0) 663 NR
21 Indiana State (0-0) 635 NR
22 Idaho State (0-0) 627 NR
23 Harvard (0-0) 620 NR
24 Stephen F. Austin (0-0) 554 NR
25 McNeese State (0-0) 440 NR
Also Receiving Votes: Eastern Illinois (431) , William & Mary (225) , Cal Poly (189) , Alcorn State (144) , South Carolina State (126) , North Carolina A&T (108) , Northern Arizona (74) , Western Carolina (65) , Bethune-Cookman (56) , Sacred Heart (46) , Charleston Southern (40) , Samford (38) , Southern Illinois (26) , Western Illinois (23) , Jackson State (19) , Jacksonville (16) , Lehigh (15) , Delaware (14) , Bryant (11) , San Diego (10) , Bucknell (9) , Northwestern State (9) , Lamar (9) , Towson (8) , Dartmouth (6) , Grambling State (6) , Central Arkansas (6) , Yale (5) , Southern University (4) , Wagner (3) , Duquesne (2) , Maine (2) , Mercer (2) , Missouri State (1) , Tennessee State (1) , Furman (1) , Abilene Christian (1) , South Dakota (1) , North Carolina Central (1)