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Texas finishes season with highest final ranking in nine seasons

Texas’ victory over Georgia in the Sugar Bowl catapulted the Longhorns into the No. 9 position in the final Associated Press media college football poll released this morning.

The Longhorns (10-4) finished the season with their highest national ranking since finishing No. 2 in the 2009 season, which was capped with a loss to Alabama in the then BCS-title game at the Rose Bowl.

It also came as Texas A&M (9-4) finished No. 16. The Aggies’ thrashing of North Carolina State in the Gator Bowl pushed them into their final national poll for the first time since finishing 2013 season 18th.

Tuesday’s vote marked the first time that Texas and Texas A&M both were ranked in the top 16 nationally in the final AP poll since 1998. That season was marked by the Aggies’ lone Big 12 championship and Ricky Williams winning the Heisman Trophy in Mack Brown’s first season in Austin.

Texas also became only the fourth team in the 83-season history of the AP poll to finish in the top 10 with as many as four losses. The other teams in the history of the poll include Auburn (10th, 2017), Florida (10th, 1992) and Washington (10th, 1977).

It also underscores anticipation for the upcoming season. ESPN.com senior writer Mark Schlabach picks the Longhorns eighth and the Aggies ninth nationally in his “Way Too Early” rankings for 2019.

Both teams will have an early chance to grab national attention in a wild second week of the season on Sept. 7.  Texas A&M travels to defending national champion and Schlabach’s top team Clemson. And Texas will host No. 10 LSU on that date.

That anticipation should boost fans of both schools over the long wait until the upcoming season starts.

Tim Griffin

Tim Griffin

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