As one of several stars returning on Penn football's defense, junior safety Sam Philippi will have to raise his game even further for the Quakers to surpass their predicted third-place finish.

Credit: Ananya Chandra / The Daily Pennsylvanian

Preseason. It’s a time of preparation, blind hope and excitement; a clean slate. Nobody really knows how things are going to turn out, but that doesn’t stop the predictions.

In the recently released Ivy League Preseason Football Poll, media from around the Ancient Eight predicted the final standings for the upcoming season. The results: Princeton and Harvard tied for first, with Penn coming in a close third.

Princeton received the most first place votes in the poll with six, while Penn and Harvard each received five. This is the third consecutive year the Crimson have finished first or tied for first in the poll.

Unfortunately for Harvard, those lofty predictions haven’t always been achieved. The Crimson have only won a third of a title in the past two years combined.

Meanwhile, Penn has won a share of the Ivy League title in each of the last two years, despite not being chosen to win by the media poll either time. The Quakers enter the season looking for their first outright conference championship in the Ray Priore era.

While the road will be tough for the Red and Blue this season without graduated star quarterback and current Atlanta Falcon Alek Torgersen, Penn does return 14 starters from last year’s team including a conference leading 10 All-Ivy picks.

It's anyone's guess whether or not the Quakers will be able to prove the poll wrong this season, but one thing's for sure; they've done it before.

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