By John Antonik for WVUsports.com
August 02, 2012 02:09 PM
We knew West Virginia was about to face one of the toughest football schedules in school history and now the coaches have confirmed it. Six Big 12 schools, including West Virginia, are ranked in this year’s preseason USA Today Coaches’ Poll, announced earlier today.
The Mountaineers will begin the year ranked 11th by the coaches for the third time since 1998 [1998, 2004 and 2012], and it’s the fifth time since 2004 that WVU starts a season ranked among the 12-best football teams in the country.
In 2006, West Virginia started the season ranked seventh, in 2007, WVU began the year ranked sixth and in 2008, West Virginia was eighth.
Overall, it is the sixth time West Virginia begins the season ranked by the coaches after being ranked just once  during a nine-year period from 1995-2003.
As for the rest of the Big 12, Oklahoma checks in at No. 8, Texas 15th, TCU 17th, Oklahoma State 19th and Kansas State is 21st. Two additional Big 12 teams, Baylor and Texas Tech, also received Top 25 votes.
The last time West Virginia faced that many ranked teams in a season was in 1994 when the Mountaineers opened up with fourth-ranked Nebraska [eventual national champion] and also faced 14th-ranked Virginia Tech, seventh-ranked Miami, 17th-ranked Boston College and 22nd-ranked Syracuse.
There are still tickets remaining for West Virginia’s two home dates against TCU and Kansas, as well as its non-conference game against James Madison at FedExFeild in Washington, D.C. on Sept. 15. Contact the Mountaineer Ticket Office toll-free at 1-800-WVU GAME or log on to wvugame.com to purchase tickets.West Virginia in the USA Today Coaches’ Preseason Poll
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