The preseason Amway Coaches Poll for college football was released today. The top five is hardly a surprise, with powerhouses Alabama, Ohio State, Florida State, USC and Clemson leading the way.
Scroll further down in the poll, under the "Others Receiving Votes" subhead, and you'll notice something a little bit out of place: One coach picked Maryland as the 25th-best team in the country entering the season.
Asserting that the Terps will be one of the top 25 teams in college football is certainly a bold prediction. While the poll does not list each coach's ballot, it does show the 65 coaches behind the ballots, so we can make some educated guesses.
Let's figure out some candidates who could have voted for Maryland.
Alabama head coach Nick Saban seemingly has no connection to Maryland in any notable capacity, right? Well, Aazaar Abdul-Rahim, who used to be on his staff, is now Maryland's defensive backs coach (and star recruiter). Perhaps Saban wanted to give a nod to one of his alumni by voting for his new team at No. 25.
Another coach in the Big Ten
The idea of one conference being superior to another is a pretty big deal in college football, and really all college sports. So it's possible that one of the other Big Ten coaches in this poll, such as Penn State's James Franklin or Michigan State's Mark Dantonio, gave a vote to a rival school to bolster the perceived strength of the conference.
DJ Durkin himself
Maryland's own DJ Durkin seems like the easiest person to guess for this. However, it's also possible that Durkin would like to wait and see how his team performs on the field before giving it any sort of recognition in a poll.
At the time of publication, USA Today had not responded to a request for comment. Because we care way too much about this, we will update the article if we hear back from them