Tennessee has been a regular in offseason and preseason top-10 rankings this year. The Vols added another one recently, checking in at No. 7 in college football expert Phil Steele’s Preseason Top 25, which came out in his magazine.
Steele previously projected the Vols as the No. 9 team in the Preseason AP Poll, but that was his projection of what the AP voters will select. The No. 7 ranking reflects his personal opinion and study of the teams.
Alabama (No. 2), LSU (No. 4), Ole Miss (No. 17) and Georgia (No. 23) are the other SEC teams in his ranking.
The Vols were last ranked in the preseason top 10 of the AP Poll in 2005 (No. 3).