PROVO -- BYU tallied 91 points, including one first-place vote to earn a No. 3 ranking in the 2001 Mountain West Conference preseason poll, as selected by MWC media.
Colorado State was selected to repeat as MWC champions, earning 11 first-place votes. The Rams--coming off a 10-2 season, a No. 14 ranking in the national polls and an AXA Liberty Bowl championship--have either won outright or shared the first two MWC titles.
UNLV, which finished last season at 7-5 and third in the MWC, was picked to finish second. The 2000 Las Vegas Bowl champion Rebels earned four first-place votes.
BYU and San Diego State received on first-place vote each and were chosen to place third and fourth, respectively, in the conference standings.
Air Force, followed by Utah, New Mexico and Wyoming round out the preseason poll.
BYU seniors Justin Ena (LB) and Jason Scukenec (OL) were the only two Cougars selected to the 2001 MWC Preseason All-Conference team. Colorado State had six players named to the preseason All-MWC team.
BYU coaches will get their first look at the 2001 squad on Saturday, Aug. 4 as the team will participate in its first practice. The Cougars will gather at LaVell Edwards Stadium on Saturday, beginning at 10 a.m. for the annual Media Day. Later in the afternoon, BYU will lace up the cleats and hit the field for its first practice of the season.
Two-a-day practices will begin on Monday, Aug. 6. All practices will be closed to the public due to heavy construction on the practice fields. Full-contact drills will begin Wednesday, Aug. 8.