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FCS college football rankings: Villanova ranked #3 in preseason poll

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National Title here we come!

Rich Barnes-USA TODAY Sports

The FCS Coaches' poll, one of two official ranking systems, dropped this afternoon. To nobody's surprise, North Dakota State was a unanimous pick as the top team in the country. Villanova came in at #3, higher than their #7 ranking at the end of last season after bowing out in the quarterfinals to Sam Houston State (who ironically is ranked #4 - that will ruffle some feathers!).

The CAA is expected to have another strong season and it's reflected in this preseason poll. New Hampshire (#7) joins Villanova in the Top 10 while James Madison (#13) 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 #21.

FCS Coaches' Poll

Rank School 2014 Record Points 2014 Final Rank
1 North Dakota State Bison (24) 15-1 600 1
2 Illinois State Redbirds 13-2 551 2
3 Villanova Wildcats 11-3 512 7
4 Sam Houston State Bearkats 11-5 511 6
5 Coastal Carolina Chanticleers 12-2 502 5
6 Eastern Washington Eagles 11-3 481 4
7 New Hampshire Wildcats 12-2 445 3
8 Chattanooga Mocs 10-4 409 8
9 Jacksonville State Gamecocks 10-2 396 9
10 Northern Iowa Panthers 9-5 381 10
11 Montana State Bobcats 8-5 296 20
12 Montana Grizzlies 9-5 278 11
13 James Madison Dukes 9-3 272 19
14 Liberty Flames 9-5 256 17
15 South Dakota State Jackrabbits 9-5 215 13
16 Youngstown State Penguins 7-5 205 25
17 Eastern Kentucky Colonels 9-4 171 21
18 Richmond Spiders 9-5 170 16
19 Southeastern Louisiana Lions 9-4 164 12
20 Indiana State Sycamores 8-6 106 18
21 Fordham Rams 11-3 103 14
22 Harvard Crimson 10-0 99 15
23 McNeese State Cowboys 6-5 91 NR
24 Idaho State Bengals 8-4 82 NR
25 Eastern Illinois Panthers 5-7 73 NR
Others receiving votes: Alcorn State 52, Stephen F. Austin 51, William & Mary 43, Cal Poly 42, Northern Arizona 34, Bethune-Cookman 25, North Carolina A&T 24, Jackson State 21, South Carolina State 21, Charleston Southern 14, Sacred Heart 14, Western Carolina 13, Furman 12, South Dakota 12, Maine 9, Bucknell 9, Lehigh 8, Towson 5, Samford 5, Bryant 4, San Diego 4, Yale 4, Central Arkansas 2, Duquesne 2, UT Martin 1.