For the second year in a row, the media predicts Tulsa to finish at the bottom.
The American Athletic Conference’s preseason media poll was released Tuesday morning as Day 2 of the conference’s media days got underway in Newport, Rhode Island. The Golden Hurricane were picked to finish sixth in the West Division, with Memphis leading the way. UCF was projected to finish atop the East Division.
“Every year I’ve been here we’ve been picked low, and that’s fine,” coach Philip Montgomery said. “Preseason polls, in my opinion, no one across the country knows what your team’s going to be. Every year there are surprises. Every year you have teams picked at the top that don’t have the kind of season people expected them to have and vice versa. It’s too early to tell what teams are going to be. We’ll get into the season, get to work and take it week-by-week.”
TU also received the same prediction last year, and fulfilled the projection after a 3-9 season. The Golden Hurricane earned the division’s second spot in 2016 with a 10-3 record and have finished at the bottom every season since.
Montgomery praises team’s senior attendees
Montgomery wasn’t the only one representing the Golden Hurricane in Newport, Rhode Island this week.
Four TU players also made the 1,500-mile trip, including linebacker Cooper Edmiston, defensive end Trevis Gipson, offensive lineman Chris Ivy Jr. and running back Corey Taylor II. Three of the players are seniors, and Montgomery spoke especially high of Edmiston, a senior from Gatesville, Texas.
“He has become more vocal,” Montgomery said. “His production speaks for itself. He just goes out and does his job every time he steps on the field. He’s had 100 tackles in each of the last two years. I don’t expect anything different. Probably from a stats standpoint, he had an incredible season last year.”
Montgomery also praised fellow senior Gipson.
“He’s really dedicated himself to our football team,” Montgomery said. “He’s unselfish. He’s explosive and plays with a lot of passion.”
As for the offensive side of the ball, Ivy will lead the way.
“He’s been very vocal,” Montgomery said. “He’s worked his tail off. He has improved so much at the left tackle position. He has to be an anchor for us. With all the guys upfront, he’s the centerpiece, and he needs to set the tone for the younger players.”