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Alabama was voted No. 1 in the preseason USA Today coaches' poll released Monday, with Ohio State second and defending national champion Georgia third.
The Associated Press preseason Top 25 will be released Aug. 15.
The Crimson Tide received 54 first-place votes from a panel of 66 major college football coaches. Alabama is coming off a loss in the College Football Playoff title game to Georgia.
The Buckeyes received five first-place votes and the Bulldogs got six. No. 18 Texas also received a first-place vote.
Clemson was No. 4 and Notre Dame was No. 5. Michigan, coming off its first CFP appearance, was sixth, followed by Texas A&M, Utah, Oklahoma and Baylor.