KNOXVILLE (AP) –
- Florida State
- Ohio State
- Notre Dame
- Michigan State
- Oklahoma State
- North Carolina
The AP Top 25 is determined by a simple points system based on how each voter ranks college football’s best teams. A team receives 25 points for each first place vote, 24 for second place and so on through to the 25th team, which receives one point. The rankings are set by listing the teams’ point totals from highest to lowest. The mathematical formula is the same as the one used for the AP Pro 32 rankings and the AP Top 25 rankings for men’s and women’s basketball.
The Associated Press began its college football poll on Oct. 19, 1936, and it is now the longest-running poll of those that award national titles at the end of the season. The preseason poll was started in 1950. A panel of 61 sports writers and broadcasters from around the country votes on the poll weekly. All of the voters have an extensive background in covering college football. Alabama’s ten AP national titles lead the way, with Notre Dame sitting second with eight. Oklahoma has seven, while Miami and Southern California have five each. Each team’s ranking will be mentioned in AP stories throughout the preseason and the regular season, along with a link to the Top 25: collegefootball.ap.org/poll
As the Orange and White turn the page to a new season, fans said this gives them a reason to be hopeful that this season could be a game-changer.
“It really makes me excited to be on campus at a time like this because this year is our best chance to go far in the playoffs,” Riley Chambers, UT Freshman, said. “I’m expecting them to win the SEC East and I know the rest of campus is too, and I’m just excited to be here and be a part of the experience.”
This marks the first time the Vols rounded out the AP preseason top ten since 2005, raising expectations for the upcoming year.
“We’re coming back, we’re coming back for sure,” Adam Block, UT Senior said. “Everybody’s saying ‘this is the year, this is the year’ and I think this is the year because of the recruiting class coming in and less room for error.”
And though polls don’t predict the future, fans said it feels good to be recognized as a top contender in college football and is reinforcing their belief that this season could end even better than it started.
“I mean it gives us hope,” Tyler Teague, UT Sophomore, said. “It gives us optimistic views of how the season is going to go and I’m really excited to see what they do. I think we’ll have a playoff contending team for sure.”