College football rankings: Florida Gators open 2021 at No. 13 in Preseason AP Top 25 poll

By Adam Silverstein
August 16, 2021
College football rankings: Florida Gators open 2021 at No. 13 in Preseason AP Top 25 poll

Image Credit: @GatorsFB / Twitter

Coming off three straight New Year’s Six bowls appearances — but a rough end to the 2020 season and key roster changes perhaps shaking confidence in the program — the Florida Gators open the 2021 season exactly where they left off last year at No. 13 in the Preseason AP Top 25. Florida opened at No. 8 in the 2019 and 2020 preseason rankings.

The Gators were not ranked among the top 25 teams in the 2018 preseason poll but have now been ranked among the top 15 in three consecutive preseason and postseason polls under head coach Dan Mullen. UF was picked as the No. 11 team in the Preseason Coaches Poll released last week.

Florida finished 8-4 (8-2 SEC) last season, losing its final three games of the year, including a 37-34 shocker to LSU, a hard-fought 52-46 defeat to No. 1 Alabama in the SEC Championship Game, and a disastrous 55-20 takedown at the hands of Oklahoma in the Cotton Bowl, a game in which UF largely mailed its effort in. This after the Gators winning four straight games to end both the 2019 and 2020 seasons.

Alabama, the defending national champions, opens the season solidly as the No. 1 team in the nation, receiving 47 of 63 first-place votes from the coaches. Oklahoma, Clemson, Ohio State and Georgia round out the top five with Texas A&M the only other SEC team ahead of Florida entering the season.

In all, there are five SEC teams in the rankings with TAMU at No. 6 and LSU at No. 16. Miami slots in one spot behind Florida at No. 15, though neither Florida State nor UCF are ranked. The Gators will open the season with three AP Top 25 teams on their schedule: the Crimson Tide, Bulldogs and Tigers.

2021 Preseason AP Top 25

1. Alabama (47)
2. Oklahoma (6)
3. Clemson (6)
4. Ohio State (1)
5. Georgia (3)
6. Texas A&M
7. Iowa State
8. Cincinnati
9. Notre Dame
10. North Carolina
11. Oregon
12. Wisconsin
13. Florida
14. Miami (FL)
15. USC
16. LSU
17. Indiana
18. Iowa
19. Penn State
20. Washington
21. Texas
22. Coastal Carolina
23. Louisiana
24. Utah
25. Arizona State

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