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Oklahoma Sooners football ranked highly heading into 2014 season

Oklahoma Sooners football ranks high for 2014
Oklahoma Sooners football ranks high for 2014
Photo by Streeter Lecka/Getty Images

A lot of pre-rankings have already come out for the 2014 college football season based on how teams finished up the 2013 season and who they have returning for the new season. According to NewsOK.com on Jan. 7, the Sooners football team is ranked in the Top 10 in all but one of the early rankings for major publications.

The Sooners football program went through the 2013 college football season overlooked by almost everybody thanks to questions at quarterback and close wins over teams they should have dominated. However, by the end, they won 11 games and only lost to long-time rival Texas Longhorns and the fifth ranked Baylor Bears.

Then the Sooners beat the defending national champion Alabama Crimson Tide by two touchdowns in the Sugar Bowl before getting a commitment from the number one all-purpose running back in the nation.

The Sooners football team's best ranking for 2014 came form College Football Talk, which ranked them at fourth in the nation. ESPN and USA Today ranked OU at eighth and CBS Sports ranked them 13th. Averaged together, the four publications ranked OU at an average of seventh. The teams ranked ahead of OU in the combined averages are defending national champion Florida State, Oregon, Alabama, Auburn, Ohio State and Stanford.

The 2014 Oklahoma Sooners football team returns quarterback Trevor Knight, who had the best game of his short career in the Sugar Bowl, wide receiver Sterling Shepard, who looks ready to take over the mantle of the team's star receiver, and a group of young running backs including five-star recruit Joe Mixon. The big questions, though, come on defense.