NORMAN — There are plenty of questions for Oklahoma entering this football season.
The Sooners are breaking in a new quarterback, and the defense loses a lot from a unit that struggled throughout the second half of last season.
That doubt is reflected in Oklahoma's ranking in the USA Today preseason coaches' poll, released Thursday.
The Sooners come in at No. 16, the first time since 2000 they start outside the top 10.
Alabama is No. 1, followed by Ohio State, Oregon, Stanford and Georgia.
Six SEC teams are ranked ahead of the highest Big 12 team — Oklahoma State at No. 14. Texas (15) and TCU (20) are the only other Big 12 teams in the preseason poll.
Texas and Oklahoma are separated by just two points in the poll, 622-620.
Notre Dame, who the Sooners play Sept. 28 on the road, is No. 11.
Pollspeak.com recently named Oklahoma the most overrated major college football team from 2008-12. The site used The Associated Press preseason and final rankings to determine the rankings.
The coaches' poll shows similar value on the Sooners.
Since winning the 2000 BCS national title, the lowest OU has been rated in the preseason was No. 8 in 2007 and 2010.
And only once since 2000 have the Sooners finished the season ranked better in the coaches' poll than in the preseason. The 2010 team that was ranked No. 8 in the preseason finished No. 6.
In its national championship season, the Sooners were ranked No. 20 in the preseason poll.
Of the top five most overrated teams according to Pollspeak, four are ranked to start the season — USC (24), Georgia (5) and Nebraska (18). Virginia Tech received votes.
Each of the last two seasons, Oklahoma entered the season in the top four before finishing No. 15.
The 16th spot in the preseason poll hasn't been kind recently. In the last 10 seasons, only twice has the preseason No. 16 finished higher in the final poll — Boise State (No. 4 in 2009) and LSU (No. 10 in 2010).
Five times in the last decade, the preseason No. 16 team has finished unranked.
The Sooners, who started practice Thursday morning, start the season Aug. 31 at home against Louisiana-Monroe.