Georgia tops preseason Top 25; Michigan, Ohio St. next

Field Level Media
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Georgia coach Kirby Smart at the first day fall football camp in Athens, Ga., on Thursday, Aug. 3, 2023.
Georgia coach Kirby Smart at the first day fall football camp in Athens, Ga., on Thursday, Aug. 3, 2023.
Image: Joshua L. Jones / USA TODAY NETWORK

Entering the 2023 season as it ended the last one, Georgia is No. 1 in the AP Top 25 poll released Monday.

Sixty of the 63 votes cast for the preseason poll listed Georgia at No. 1.

Michigan and Ohio State are ranked second and third, marking the first time since 2009 that Alabama wasn't among the top three in the preseason poll. The Crimson Tide rank fourth, one spot in front of LSU.


After going 11-2 last season and entering five of the past seven seasons at No. 1 in the preseason poll, Alabama's question marks in August include who will start at quarterback.

Georgia, 29-2 the past two seasons, is chasing a third consecutive national championship, and the Bulldogs are banking on another top-ranked recruiting class to be the salve for losing top performers on either side of the ball. The list of departures since the national title game in January is headlined by quarterback Stetson Bennett, tight end Darnell Washington, defensive tackle Jalen Carter, linebacker Nolan Smith and cornerback Kelee Ringo.


Ohio State lost to Georgia in the CFP semifinals and the Buckeyes are also in the group of power programs with a new quarterback.

Michigan returns J.J. McCarthy at quarterback and bids for a third CFP bid in three years, but the Wolverines are still looking for their first victory under the playoff format.

At No. 6 is USC, one of five Pac-12 programs in the Top 25, followed by Penn State and ACC favorites Florida State (No. 8) and Clemson (9).

Washington rounds out the top 10 ahead of the top-ranked Big 12 team, Texas.

TCU beat the Wolverines to play in the national title game and checks in at No. 17 in the 2023 preseason poll. The Horned Frogs are replacing Max Duggan at quarterback and a number of starters.


Independent Notre Dame is No. 13 and Tulane, representing the American Athletic Conference, is ranked 24th.

—Field Level Media