Penn State RB Saquon Barkley, TE Mike Gesicki highlight All-America Team

Southern California quarterback Sam Darnold and Penn State running back Saquon Barkley put on a show at the Rose Bowl last season and established themselves as two of the biggest stars in college football coming into 2017.

The two Heisman Trophy contenders highlight the first preseason All-America team in the history of The Associated Press.

Darnold passed for 453 yards and five touchdowns in USC's 52-49 victory over the Nittany Lions. The sophomore comes into this season leading No. 4 USC on a nine-game winning streak. Barkley ran for 194 yards and scored three touchdowns against USC.

The AP All-America team is the longest-running annual honor roll of the nation's top college football players, dating to 1925, and is usually released after the season.

Darnold was voted to the first team by a panel of 51 Top 25 voters, edging out Heisman winner Lamar Jackson, who is the second-team quarterback on the lists released Tuesday.

Joining Darnold and Barkley in the backfield is LSU running back Derrius Guice, who spent the last two seasons as back up to former All-America Leonard Fournette.

The first-team defense is led by two players who were postseason All-Americans in 2016: Houston defensive tackle Ed Oliver, who made it to the first team as a freshman last season, and Alabama defensive back Minkah Fitzpatrick. Florida State placed two defensive backs on the first-team with cornerback Tavarus McFadden and safety Derwin James, who missed most of last year with a knee injury.

First-team offense
Quarterback -- Sam Darnold, sophomore, Southern California.

Running backs -- Saquon Barkley, junior, Penn State; Derrius Guice, junior, LSU.

Tackles -- Orlando Brown, junior, Oklahoma; Connor Williams, junior, Texas.

Guards -- Quenton Nelson, senior, Notre Dame; Cody O'Connell, senior, Washington State.

Center -- Billy Price, senior, Ohio State.

Tight end -- Mike Gesicki, junior, Penn State.

Wide receivers -- James Washington, senior, Oklahoma State; Christian Kirk, junior, Texas A&M.

All-purpose player -- Quadree Henderson, junior, Pittsburgh.

Kicker -- Daniel Carlson, senior, Auburn.

First-team defense
Ends -- Harold Landry, senior, Boston College; Bradley Chubb, senior, North Carolina State.

Tackles -- Ed Oliver, sophomore, Houston; Dexter Lawrence, sophomore, Clemson.

Linebackers -- Arden Key, junior, LSU; Josey Jewell, senior, Iowa; Azeem Victor, senior, Washington.

Cornerbacks -- Tavarus McFadden, junior, Florida State; Jaire Alexander, junior, Louisville.

Safeties -- Derwin James, junior, Florida State; Minkah Fitzpatrick, junior, Alabama.

Punter -- Mitch Wishnowsky, junior, Utah.