As the AP College Football Top 25 poll came out on Monday, all eyes locked in on the teams that will take center stage on Saturday, September 2nd. At the top of the list is Alabama, who once again claim the number one position on the poll. However, they’re followed closely by week one opponent and number three ranked Florida State Seminoles.
AP preseason poll
2. Ohio St
3. Florida St
6. Penn St
10. Oklahoma St
— SportsCenter (@SportsCenter) August 21, 2017
On paper, this has got to be one of the best matchups of not only the year, but of the past decade. Two of the top three teams in college football battling it out to start the season and set the tone for the race to the College Football Playoff.
Since 2007 when Nick Saban took over as head coach, Alabama has been ranked in the top five of the preseason AP poll eight times with four of those eight being number one rankings. Alabama has also been on a recruiting tear, as they’ve continued to bring in sensational athletes for coach Saban to help lead to victory.
Speaking of incredible talent, quarterback Jalen Hurts is back to lead this explosive Crimson Tide offense. He is joined in the backfield by the powerful running duo of Damien Harris and Bo Scarbrough, the latter an early candidate for the Heisman trophy. The trio accounted for over 5,500 yards of offense and 51 touchdowns.
Florida State hasn’t been ranked this high since the departure of Heisman trophy winner Jameis Winston. Since then, the Seminoles have rebuilt through recruiting to once again gain national attention.
With arguably one of the best talents in college football in safety Derwin James, Florida State has got one of the top rated defenses of the year. The biggest issue the Seminoles with have is Hurts being a mobile quarterback, something Florida State struggled to stop last season. In addition to the return of James, freshmen Josh Kaindoh and Marvin Wilson look to fill the holes that were left on the defensive line.
There is a flurry of matchups that will be played on September 2nd. Yet, all the focus will be on the 8 P.M. prime time game between these two college powerhouses in what will be the best first-week matchup in all of college football.