Lions Crack Preseason Top 25

PSU coach Joe Paterno

Penn State is ranked in the USA Today Coaches Poll. But it did not make it in by much.

Penn State has cracked the Top 25 in the preseason USA Today Coaches Poll.

But just barely.

In the poll that was released Thursday, the Nittany Lions checked in at No. 25. They are one of five Big Ten teams in the poll, joining Wisconsin (No. 10), Nebraska (No. 11), Ohio State (No. 16) and Michigan State (No. 17).

Penn State's 2011 schedule features four teams in the Top 25, including the Badgers, Cornhuskers and Buckeyes of the Big Ten. The Lions also face No. 2 Alabama in the non-conference portion of the schedule.

Other Big Ten team receiving votes in the poll are Iowa, Northwestern and Michigan. PSU plays the Hawkeyes and Wildcats this season, but Michigan rotates off the schedule.

Penn State went 7-6 in 2010, losing to Florida in the Outback Bowl. The Lions open the 2011 season Sept. 3 against Indiana State at Beaver Stadium.

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