Alabama sits atop the Associated Press Top 25 preseason poll released Monday, with defending national champion Georgia at No. 3, giving the SEC three teams in the top six.
The Crimson Tide received 54 first-place votes, well ahead of No. 2 Ohio State’s six votes for the top spot. The Bulldogs received three first-place votes.
Clemson and Notre Dame round out the top five.
Texas A&M begins the 2022 season ranked No. 6, followed by Utah, Michigan, Oklahoma and Baylor.
Alabama opens its season on Sept. 3 at home against Utah State.
But it’s two other games that weekend that promise to have an immediate impact on the early-season rankings.
The Buckeyes have an early national showdown against Notre Dame in Columbus, Ohio, and Georgia takes on No. 11 Oregon in Atlanta. Both games are also on Sept. 3.
The regular-season slate begins in earnest on Aug. 27.
The SEC leads the poll with six teams while the ACC, surprisingly, debuts with five. The Big Ten placed four while the Big 12 and Pac-12 boast three each.
The rest of the Top 25:
12. Oklahoma State
13. North Carolina State
14. Southern Cal
15. Michigan State
21. Ole Miss
22. Wake Forest