The preseason Associated Press Top 25 poll is out, and it revealed that two Utah schools — Utah at No. 7 and BYU at No. 25 — will start the 2022 season in the rankings.
Utah State, meanwhile, received a pair of votes.
The Cougars, Aggies and Utes will all have their chances to face other teams in the Top 25.
Each Utah school will face at least two teams that are ranked in the preseason Top 25. BYU leads the way with four Top 25 opponents, while both Utah and Utah State will face two.
No. 1 Alabama
Utah team on its schedule: Utah State at Alabama, Sept. 3
About Alabama: The Crimson Tide enter the season as the top-ranked team in the country for the second year in a row and fifth time in the past seven years. Alabama came up short of winning the national championship last season, falling to Georgia in the title game, but returns quarterback Bryce Young, the 2021 Heisman Trophy winner. The Aggies have a tune-up against UConn before heading to Tuscaloosa to face the Crimson Tide.
No. 5 Notre Dame
Utah team on its schedule: BYU vs. Notre Dame (Las Vegas), Oct. 8
About Notre Dame: The Cougars and Fighting Irish will meet for the first time since 2013, though it will be the first neutral-site meeting between the two schools. Marcus Freeman is headed into his first season as Notre Dame’s head coach. He takes over a program coming off an 11-2 season in which the Fighting Irish fell just shy of making the College Football Playoff.
No. 10 Baylor
Utah team on its schedule: Baylor at BYU, Sept. 10
About Baylor: Dave Aranda has quickly turned the Bears into contenders. The former Utah State assistant led Baylor to the Big 12 championship last season, his second as head coach, and the Bears are favored to win the conference yet again. Baylor beat BYU 38-24 in their matchup last season, and this will be the Bears’ first trip to Provo since 1983.
No. 11 Oregon
Utah teams on its schedule: BYU at Oregon, Sept. 17; Utah at Oregon, Nov. 19
About Oregon: The Ducks have a new coach, Dan Lanning, and plenty of returning experience — including former Orem High linebacker Noah Sewell — as they try to retake the mantle as the Pac-12’s top team. Utah had their number last year, beating Oregon twice, including in the Pac-12 championship game, putting a damper on the Ducks’ 10-4 season. BYU, meanwhile, hasn’t faced Oregon since a 2006 matchup in the Las Vegas Bowl.
No. 14 USC
Utah team on its schedule: USC at Utah, Oct. 15
About USC: The Trojans are trying to bounce back from a forgettable 2021 season — they went just 4-8 — and they will have plenty of ammo to do just that. Lincoln Riley comes in as head coach after several successful years at Oklahoma, and quarterback Caleb Williams and wide receiver Jordan Addison headline a strong group of transfers. The Trojans still have to get through defending Pac-12 champion Utah, though, and the Utes have beaten USC three of the last four times they’ve played in Salt Lake City.
No. 19 Arkansas
Utah team on its schedule: Arkansas at BYU, Oct. 15
About Arkansas: The first meeting between these two schools will be a rare road trip outside of SEC country for the Razorbacks. Junior K.J. Jefferson returns at quarterback for Arkansas, which is coming off playing its first New Year’s Bowl game since 2011. The Razorbacks are one of six SEC teams ranked in the preseason Top 25 poll.
No. 25 BYU
Utah team on its schedule: Utah State at BYU, Sept. 29
About BYU: This is the lone in-state matchup between the three FBS Utah schools all year. The Aggies are the defending Mountain West Conference champions and finished last year ranked No. 24 in the AP poll, while BYU went 10-3 and ended the year ranked No. 19. The Cougars prevailed 34-20 over Utah State in their matchup last year in Logan.