UGA begins three-peat quest at No

Aug 14, 2023, 12:23 PM ET Georgia will begin its drive for an unprecedented college football championship three-peat as the No. 1 team in The Associated Press preseason Top 25.

The Bulldogs got 60 of 63 first-place votes in the poll released Monday to easily outpoint No. 2 Michigan, which got two first-place votes and has its finest preseason ranking because being No. 2 in 1991. The Wolverines’ Big Ten rival, Ohio State, is No. 3 with one first-place vote.

Two more Southeastern Conference groups sign up with Georgia in the leading five. Alabama is No. 4, the Crimson Tide’s least expensive preseason ranking in more than a decade, and LSU starts at No. 5, its best preseason ranking since 2016.1.

Georgia (60 )
2. Michigan (2 )
3. Ohio State (1 )
4. Alabama
5. LSU
6. USC
7. Penn State
8. Florida State
9. Clemson
10. Washington
11. Texas
12. Tennessee
13. Notre Dame
14. Utah
15. Oregon
16. Kansas State
17. TCU
18. Oregon State
19. Wisconsin
20. Oklahoma
21. North Carolina
22. Ole Miss
23. Texas A&M
24. Tulane
25. Iowa

The Bulldogs have actually won the past 2 nationwide titles while going 29-1, however this will be only the second time in program history they have actually been preseason No. 1. The very first was in 2008.

Georgia started the 2021 season No. 5, prior to going on to win its first nationwide title since 1980. The Bulldogs followed up with a best season in 2022 after being preseason No. 3.

The Bulldogs have actually had 25 players drafted by NFL groups the previous 2 years, consisting of quarterback Stetson Bennett and All-America defensive deal with Jalen Carter this April. Coach Kirby Smart has developed a program to rival Nick Saban’s Alabama dynasty, so voters are now providing Georgia the Crimson Tide treatment.Alabama had actually been preseason No. 1 each of the past two seasons, and five of the previous 7. Clemson was preseason No. 1 in the other 2 seasons, making Georgia the first string other than the Tide or Tigers to be preseason No. 1 since Ohio State in 2015. Alabama is likewise the last team to win

back-to-back significant college football national championships, doing so in 2011 and ’12. No group has won 3 straight national titles throughout the AP survey age, which dates to 1936. For the record, Minnesota, the first official AP champ, was retroactively crowned champion for the 1934 and ’35 seasons by a number of organizations.Editor’s Picks Coach Bernie Bierman’s Gophers from long earlier are the closest thing major college football has to a three-peater.”We have actually not attended to

that with them,”Smart stated during SEC media days of chasing college football history.”We’ve certainly taken a look at some three-peat situations of teams like the [Chicago] Bulls and different sports groups that they might really learn about. No offense to the Minnesota 1935 team, however I do not know if it’s going to resonate with my audience.”The Bulldogs are reloading on the protective front and at quarterback, but do not lack for stars. Tight end Brock Bowers is among the country’s best players; linebacker Jamon Dumas-Johnson was a second-team All-American; and center Sedrick Van Pran anchors among the country’s most skilled offensive lines.Rounding out the top 10 is USC at No. 6, which is the Trojans’finest preseason ranking because 2017, followed by Penn State, Florida State, Clemson and Washington.The Seminoles are back in the preseason rankings for the first time given that 2018,

and in the top 10 for the very first time because 2017. STARTING ON TOP, STAYING ON TOP Beware, ‘Dawgs.Since the AP preseason survey started in 1950, 11 teams that started No. 1

likewise finished No. 1. Just 2 of those have actually occurred because 2000: Southern California in 2004 and Alabama in 2017.”The threat for us is complacency, “Smart said.”The first thing you have to do is acknowledge that it’s a danger. Like if you acknowledge the complacency is a danger, it’s the primary step towards stomping it out.”TIDE’S OUT … OF THE TOP 3 For a lot of schools, a preseason No. 4 ranking would feel quite good.For Alabama, it seems like a sign of decline. The last time the Crimson Tide had a lower preseason ranking was 2009. That was Year 3 for Saban in Tuscaloosa, and Alabama went on to win the very first of six championship games during his unmatched run.This preseason survey is the very first because 2015 in which the Tide did not receive at least one first-place vote.The Tide did run its record streak of top-five preseason rankings to 15. Next finest in survey history is 11 for Florida State in 1990-2000. Ohio State has actually had 11 top-five preseason rankings because 2009. CONFERENCE CALL Over the past 3 years, schools have actually been redrawing the conference maps.This year, the Huge 12 has four brand-new members, the American Athletic Conference has 6 and Conference U.S.A. has four.The really fancy moves can be found in 2024.

This season will be the last with Texas and Oklahoma in the Big 12( before relocating to the SEC )and possibly the last with a Pac-12 at all. USC, UCLA, Oregon and Washington will play in the Big 10 next year while Arizona,

Arizona State, Colorado and Utah move to the Big 12 as major college football approaches sprawling incredibly conferences.Heading into this season the breakdown by conference of teams in the Top 25: SEC– 6(Nos. 1, 4, 5, 12, 22

, 23 ). Huge 10– 5(Nos. 2, 3, 7

, 19, 25). Pac-12– 5( Nos. 6, 10, 14, 15, 18 ). Huge 12– 4(Nos. 11, 16, 17, 20). ACC– 3(Nos. 8, 9, 21). American Athletic– 1( No. 24). Independent– 1(No. 13). If sorted by next season’s conference alignment the breakdown looks like this: SEC– 8(Nos. 1, 4, 5, 11, 12, 20, 22, 23 ). Big 10– 8(Nos. 2, 3, 6, 7, 10, 15, 19, 25). Big 12– 3(Nos. 14, 16, 17 ).

ACC– 3( Nos. 8, 9, 21). Pac-12– 1(No. 18– counts Oregon State as a Pac-12 team ). American Athletic– 1( No. 24)Independent– 1 (No. 13).

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