FSU leads four state teams in the AP preseason Top 25 poll

FSU leads four state teams in the AP preseason Top 25 poll

Alabama opens the season against the Seminoles in Atlanta on September 2, just the fourth opener involving top-five teams and the first pitting teams ranked in the top three.

South Florida was the highest-ranked team from a Group of Five conference at No. 19.

Monday's reveal marks the eighth time in the last 21 seasons (the post-Lou Holtz Era at Notre Dame) in which the Irish were unranked by the Associated Press in the preseason.

Since 2008, the year Georgia was the consensus preseason No. 1 team, the Bulldogs have finished lower than their preseason rank six out of nine years. The Tigers beat Alabama in the final seconds of last season's national championship game.

Since 2001, the Sooners have now been ranked in the AP top 10 for 15 of 17 seasons.

This also means that Kirby Smart becomes the first coach in the history of the Georgia program to lead the Bulldogs to a preseason ranking in each of his first two seasons. You have to go back to Pat Dye in the 1980s to find the last time they were ranked in the Top 15 three times in a four-season stretch.

Sitting there at the top is, to no one's surprise, Alabama. Not only is it the first taste of football since January for college fans, but it's also a time to talk about the contenders, and pretenders, for the 2017 season.

Week 1 will pit No. 1 Alabama against No. 3 FSU in Atlanta.

Florida owns the nation's longest season-opening winning streak of 27 games but was drubbed 41-7 by MI in the Citrus Bowl to end the 2015 season, one of the Gators' worst showings since McElwain took over as coach of the program.

The Sooners, who are coming off a second straight Big 12 title and a Sugar Bowl victory, accumulated 1,170 points in the poll.

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