What History Says About OSU’s Preseason Coaches Poll Ranking

August 10, 2021

Oklahoma State came in at No. 22 on Tuesday in the preseason edition of the Coaches Poll, and if history tells us anything, it’s that … it might not portend well for the Pokes in 2021.

Only five times since Mike Gundy took over the program in 2005 has OSU finished a season ranked higher than when it began the season in the Coaches Poll, according to the poll’s online database. Three of those five occurrences came in the first seven seasons, including OSU’s 2011 conference title-winning seasons.

The other two times came in 2015 — when OSU began the season unranked and finished No. 19 — and in 2016 — when OSU began the season ranked No. 19 and finished No. 11. In nine seasons OSU finished worse or the same in the rankings than when it began the season, and in two years, OSU started in the poll and finished unranked.

2021 22 ?
2020 16 19
2019 41 41
2018 25 NR
2017 11 14
2016 19 11
2015 28 19
2014 30 39
2013 14 17
2012 19 29
2011 8 3
2010 39 10
2009 11 25
2008 52 18
2007 40 NR
2006 NR NR
2005 NR NR

This is straight from the “probably means absolutely nothing” department, but should nonetheless be said here: This probably means absolutely nothing. Historically, though, OSU has finished worse in the Coaches Poll than when it started the season, which makes its No. 22 preseason ranking pretty interesting. If OSU hits the over on its season-long win total set by Vegas of 7.5, then there’s a good chance the Pokes can buck history and finish their season ranked higher than where they began.

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