The Prep Zone Power Poll powered by Strive Fitness – 2018 Football Poll #1 (PRESEASON POLL)

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Columbia (Lake City) begins on top of all-classification regional rankings

GAINESVILLE – Following a big preseason win against IMG (Bradenton), the No. 1 team in the country, the Columbia (Lake City) Tigers begin the 2018 season on top of The Prep Zone Power Poll.

Columbia, which opens up the season at No. 17 Gainesville tonight, received seven of the 10 first-place votes. The Tigers are loaded on offense with two Division-I receivers on offense in TJ Jones and Marquez Bell, who hold 42 offers together.

Defending 4A state champion Raines (Jacksonville) is ranked second.

The Vikings, who finished 13-1 last season, received the other three first-place votes. Raines will open up its season on Friday at home against Lee (Jacksonville), which is ranked 12th in The Prep Zone Power Poll and receiving votes in the Associated Press Class 7A state rankings.

Perennial power Trinity Christian (Jacksonville) is ranked third.

For the first time since 2012, the season ended without the Conquerors winning a state title but a move up in classifications from 3A to 5A likely denied them of their fifth straight championship, but the Conquerors are always in the mix.

Defending 1A state champion Madison County is fourth. The Cowboys were the only team in The Prep Zone’s coverage area to go undefeated from wire-to-wire last year.

Class 6A St. Augustine rounds out the top five.

The Yellow Jackets are seeking their 20th straight postseason appearance. They open up the season on Friday at defending 5A state runner-up Baker County (Glen St. Mary), which is ranked ninth in the all-classification regional rankings.

Class 6A Vanguard (Ocala) is ranked sixth, followed by 7A Bartram Trail (St. Johns), 6A Mainland (Daytona Beach), Baker County, and defending 2A state runner-up University Christian (Jacksonville) in the top 10.

The Prep Zone Power Poll ranks the top 20 high school football, basketball, baseball & softball teams (regardless of FHSAA classification) across 26 counties in North Florida (Alachua, Baker, Bradford, Citrus, Clay, Columbia, Dixie, Duval, Flagler, Gilchrist, Hamilton, Hernando, Jefferson, Lafayette, Lake, Levy, Madison, Marion, Nassau, Putnam, Sumter, St. Johns, Suwannee, Taylor, Union & Volusia counties). It is voted on weekly by sportswriters and sportscasters and it is powered by Strive Fitness.

THE PREP ZONE POWER POLL – 2018 FOOTBALL POLL #1 (PRESEASON)
(School, followed by classification, first place votes, 2017 record, and total voting points)
1. Columbia (Lake City) (7A) (7) (7-4) – 196
2. Raines (Jacksonville) (4A) (3) (13-1) – 180
3. Trinity Christian (Jacksonville) (5A) (9-4) – 158
4. Madison County (1A) (14-0) – 143
5. St. Augustine (6A) (12-1) – 135
6. Vanguard (Ocala) (6A) (11-1) – 133
7. Bartram Trail (St. Johns) (7A) (11-4) – 129
8. Mainland (Daytona Beach) (6A) (8-4) – 122
9. Baker County (Glen St. Mary) (5A) (13-2) – 101
10. University Christian (Jacksonville) (2A) (10-3) – 97
11. Flagler Palm Coast (8A) (9-1) – 86
12. Robert E. Lee (Jacksonville) (7A) (9-2) – 79
13. Bolles (Jacksonville) (5A) (8-3) – 75
14. Clay (Green Cove Springs) (5A) (9-4) – 72
15. Fleming Island (Orange Park) (7A) (10-3) – 55
16. Buchholz (Gainesville) (7A) (5-6) – 52
17. Gainesville (6A) (8-3) – 49
18. Dixie County (Cross City) (1A) (11-1) – 29
19. Dunnellon (4A) (8-3) – 26
20. Sandalwood (Jacksonville) (8A) (5-5) – 25
Also receiving votes: Bradford (Starke) (4A) (10-2) – 20; Fort White (3A) (7-4) – 18; Menendez (St. Augustine) (8-4) – 18; Ponte Vedra (5A) (7-4) – 17; Eastside (Gainesville) (5A) (5-4) – 13; Lafayette (Mayo) (1A) (9-2) – 10; Matanzas (Palm Coast) (6A) (6-4) – 9; Trenton (4A) (8-3) – 8; Belleview (5A) (6-5) – 8; DeLand (8A) (2-7) – 7; East Ridge (Clermont) (7A) (7-4) – 6; Nature Coast Tech (Brooksville) (5A) (7-3) – 5; West Nassau (Callahan) (4A) (9-2) – 5; Taylor County (Perry) (3A) (8-4) – 5; Fletcher (Neptune Beach) (7A) (7-3) – 4; Spruce Creek (Port Orange) (8A) (8-2) – 2; Wildwood (1A) (10-1) – 1; Bishop Kenny (Jacksonville) (5A) (7-3) – 1; Ribault (Jacksonville) (5A) (7-4) – 1.