The preseason Amway Coaches Poll was released by USA Today on Thursday. Six SEC teams were listed in the initial Top 25 for the upcoming 2017 football season.
It was no surprise to see Alabama as the top-rated team in the poll coming off back-to-back national title game appearances. Nick Saban’s Crimson Tide checks in at No. 1 on the list ahead of Ohio State. Alabama will play No. 3 Florida State in its season opener at Mercedes-Benz Stadium in Atlanta on Sept. 2. The Crimson Tide received 49 of a possible 65 first-place votes.
LSU is the next SEC team in the poll at No. 12, followed closely by Auburn at No. 13.
Three SEC East schools check in on the preseason Top 25 as well, with Georgia at No. 15, Florida at No. 16 and Tennessee at No. 24.
SEC West schools Texas A&M (46), Arkansas (22) and Mississippi State (19) were among the schools that did not rank in the Top 25 but did receive votes.
The poll, which is comprised of the votes of 65 FBS head coaches, has been around since 1950. In the past, it served as a part of a formula to determine BCS rankings. But with the use of a College Football Playoff selection committee in place to determine the four teams that advance at the end of the season, it no longer plays a direct role in determining college football’s national champion.
The final Coaches Poll of 2016 placed the Crimson Tide as the top SEC team at No. 2 behind national champion Clemson. Back-to-back SEC East winner Florida finished at No. 13 in the 2016 poll, followed by LSU at No. 14. Auburn checked in at No. 22 and Tennessee closed the season at No. 24.
Here’s a look at the complete 2017 preseason Amway Coaches Poll: