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2013 USA TODAY Sports Coaches Poll set for Thursday release

9:16 AM, Aug 1, 2013   |    comments
Ohio State coach Urban Meyer and the Buckeyes went unbeaten last year. Where will they start this year in the preseason Coaches Poll?(Photo: Rich Barnes, USA TODAY Sports)
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Scott Gleeson, USA TODAY Sports

In January's final USA TODAY Sports Coaches Poll, Alabama finished as the clear-cut No. 1 team after a resounding 42-14 win over Notre Dame in the BCS national championship game.

Will Nick Saban's Crimson Tide, in quest of a historic third title in four years, remain out front seven months later?

The 2013 college football season is exactly four weeks from kicking off, yet this first day in August gives college football fans a taste of the best teams in the country, as the preseason top 25 teams are unveiled at noon ET today in the 2013 USA TODAY Sports Coaches Poll.

You can find extensive coverage of the poll on the college football page of the website or interact via Twitter.

Outside of Alabama's drive for dominance, there are many questions heading into the season.

Where will Urban Meyer's Ohio State team land following an undefeated season that ended with no postseason due to NCAA sanctions?

Where will Johnny Manziel and the Texas A&M Aggies - the only team to beat 'Bama last season - be positioned in the poll?

What about Oregon and Stanford which both return their starting quarterbacks after winning BCS bowl games last season?

And how many SEC teams will dominate the top of the poll?

Answers will be forthcoming in a matter of minutes.

The first regular-season poll will be out Sept. 3 after a long Labor Day weekend of games.

Polling then will continue weekly through Dec. 8, when the pairings for the BCS games will be announced. The coaches poll counts for one-third of the formula that is used to determine the BCS standings.

The voting panel, this year consisting of 62 Football Bowl Subdivision coaches, is chosen, conference by conference, by the American Football Coaches Association via a random draw. A coach must indicate to the AFCA his willingness to participate before his name is included in the pool.

There has been a coaches poll for major college football since 1950. USA TODAY Sports became the administrator of the poll starting with the 1991 season.

Unlike the Associated Press poll of writers and broadcasters, the coaches poll does not allow votes for teams under major NCAA or conference sanctions. Last year, that meant Ohio State finished unranked despite a 12-0 record. The Buckeyes are eligible again in 2013.

Contributing: Craig Bennett

 

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