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defending champs
August 19, 2019

No surprises here.

Clemson University, college football's defending champions, will roll into the 2019 season as the nation's no. 1 ranked team, as revealed by The Associated Press preseason Top 25. It's the first time the school has ever opened the season in the top spot, but the fact that it happened this year is anything but a shocker. The loaded Tigers are led by head coach Dabo Swinney, who has turned the once-solid program into a dominant force, and sophomore quarterback Trevor Lawrence, who became the first freshman signal caller to helm the offense of a title-winning team in more than three decades last season.

The University of Alabama, whom Clemson defeated 44-16 in the College Football Playoff championship last year and serves as a constant presence at the top of the college football world, follows suit at no. 2 in the poll. The Crimson Tide have flip-flopped with Clemson over the last four years, with the Tigers winning the national title in 2016 and 2018, and the Tide taking the crown in 2015 and 2017. They played each other every year in the College Football Playoff during that stretch, including three times in the title game. It looks like they'll have a decent shot to make that happen again this season.

University of Georgia, Oklahoma University, and The Ohio State University round out the top five of the preseason poll, in order. Tim O'Donnell

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