No surprise, Alabama second in preseason AP poll

NCAA Football: Sugar Bowl-Alabama vs Oklahoma

TUSCALOOSA, Ala. _ Although the University of Alabama football program wasn’t listed first in the preseason Associated Press poll that was released Sunday afternoon, it did put the Crimson Tide on the doorstep of a milestone.

It was the 99th consecutive AP poll that included Alabama. Before Nick Saban arrived in 2007, the program record was 71 consecutive weeks under Gene Stallings.

The first of eight Southeastern Conference teams ranked, tying a league record, Alabama received one first-vote while edging Oregon and Oklahoma for the second spot in the Top 25. With 57 of the 60 first-place votes Florida State begins the season where it finished last year, No. 1.

The last time the preseason No. 1 team won the national championship was Southern California in 2004, which has since been vacated due to NCAA penalties. In 1999, Florida State under Bobby Bowden became the first team to hold the top spot for the entire season.

The last two times Alabama was preseason No. 2, it won the national title (2011 and 2012).

Alabama has four ranked opponents on its schedule: No. 6 Auburn, No. 13 LSU, No. 18 Ole Miss and No. 21 Texas A&M. Florida, which the Crimson Tide will host Sept. 20, was listed second among other teams receiving votes.

The Crimson Tide was also second in the coaches’ poll, released earlier this month. In that voting it didn’t land any first-place votes, while Florida State received 56 of 62.

Alabama has been No. 1 at some point of the season during the past six years, dating back to 2008. It’s the second longest streak during the era of the AP poll dating back to 1936, just one shy of Miami’s seven (1986-92).

During that ongoing stretch, Alabama is 26-9 (.742) against ranked opponents, having won 13 of the last 15, and 16-5 (.761) against teams in the top 10.

AP Top 25
RK TEAM PTS
1 Florida State (57) 1496
2 Alabama (1) 1361
3 Oregon (1) 1334
4 Oklahoma (1) 1324
5 Ohio State 1207
6 Auburn 1198
7 UCLA 1106
8 Michigan State 1080
9 South Carolina 1015
10 Baylor 966
11 Stanford 885
12 Georgia 843
13 LSU 776
14 Wisconsin 637
15 USC 626
16 Clemson 536
17 Notre Dame 445
18 Ole Miss 424
19 Arizona State 357
20 Kansas State 242
21 Texas A&M 238
22 Nebraska 226
23 North Carolina 194
24 Missouri 134
25 Washington 130
Others receiving votes: UCF 94, Florida 87, Texas 86, Duke 71, Iowa 68, Louisville 48, Marshall 41, Oklahoma State 37, Virginia Tech 26, TCU 23, Mississippi State 22, Michigan 19, Texas Tech 19, Miami (FL) 16, Cincinnati 15, Boise State 10, Oregon State 10, Northwestern 8, BYU 8, Penn State 5, Vanderbilt 2, Navy 2, Nevada 1, Louisiana-Lafayette 1, Utah State 1

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