College football rankings: AP Top 25 voter snubs Clemson from top 10

College Football HQ
College Football HQ

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Clemson had a down year last season, but that hasn't kept the school from starting near the top of most preseason top 25 college football rankings.

That is, except for one voter who cast his ballot in the first AP Top 25 poll.

Brett McMurphy of Action Network released his personal preseason ballot, revealing that he didn't include presumptive ACC favorite Clemson in his top 10.

McMurphy ranks Clemson as the No. 11 team in college football coming into the preseason, behind No. 10 Baylor and ahead of No. 12 Oklahoma State.

The other AP Top 25 voters were more generous, naming Clemson as the No. 4 team in college football in the official preseason rankings .

Other teams that came ahead of Clemson in McMurphy's top 25 poll include ACC rivals NC State at No. 9 and notably Miami coming in at No. 4.

Both are on Clemson's schedule this football season and each at home in Memorial Stadium, though the Tigers do travel to Wake Forest and Notre Dame.

In the official poll, NC State came in at No. 13, Miami at No. 16, Pittsburgh at No. 17, and Wake Forest at No. 22.

Notre Dame clocked in at No. 5, just behind the Tigers.

Preseason AP Top 25 college football rankings

  1. Alabama
  2. Ohio State
  3. Georgia
  4. Clemson
  5. Notre Dame
  6. Texas A&M
  7. Utah
  8. Michigan
  9. Oklahoma
  10. Baylor
  11. Oregon
  12. Oklahoma State
  13. NC State
  14. USC
  15. Michigan State
  16. Miami
  17. Pittsburgh
  18. Wisconsin
  19. Arkansas
  20. Kentucky
  21. Ole Miss
  22. Wake Forest
  23. Cincinnati
  24. Houston
  25. BYU

Clemson finished 10-3 a year ago with losses to eventual College Football Playoff national champion Georgia and on the road to NC State and Pitt, all by a combined 23 points.

It marked the first time in six straight years that Clemson failed to win the ACC or make the playoff.
Clemson made six straight College Football Playoffs until 2021

Do preseason rankings matter? Not to Dabo

Head coach Dabo Swinney isn't a fan of preseason rankings of any kind.

"It’s just something to talk about right now. It doesn’t have anything to do with December or November," he said recently.

"All that will be determined by what happens on the field, kind of like those recruiting rankings. They do that re-rank every year — somebody does it — and very seldom have we not been ranked higher four years later than we were when we signed ’em.

"That’s all based on performance and not potential. I think we’ve got a chance to be a good team, but we’ve got a lot of work to do."

But the early Top 25 is relevant

Swinney may not prefer to give preseason football rankings much credence, but history suggests they do have an effect on which teams make the CFP.

In the 21st century, only two teams that debuted at No. 1 finished as national champions — USC in 2004 under the old BCS system, and Alabama in 2017, the only team in the College Football Playoff era to do it.

But going over recent preseason polls shows that teams that went on to win the national championship have started in one particular spot: all but one — LSU, which started No. 6 in 2019 — debuted in the preseason AP top five.

Good news, in theory, for No. 4 Clemson coming into this season.

( h/t Action Network )

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Comments / 12

Paul Neumayer

why the hell is Alabama always number one Georgia won the title they should be number one Alabama must be paying everybody off lol

Renee Bermudez

Alabama!!! Go get them 👏 if they loses 😤 yes they calls out all top Colleges 😉..I stop watching pros over paid cry babies. I got to keep up with the Colleges they makes football. It should stop here.


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