USC was named No. 1 in the Associated Press' preseason college rankings on Saturday, two years after the Reggie Bush scandal threatened the West's most historic program.
The Trojans edged Alabama — 1,445 to 1,402 points — as well as No. 3 LSU. USC was likely helped by Tigers star Tyrann Mathieu being booted off the team. AP voters were given an extension and likely reconsidered their vote after last week's news.
Pac-12 foe Oregon was ranked No. 5 in the poll. Stanford was seeded No. 21.
Washington received 55 votes as the de facto No. 27. Utah got 30 votes.