College football has seen plenty of change through the years. From world wars to racial integration to the more recent labor movement that resulted in players’ ability to profit from their likenesses, evolution has been a constant. This is to say nothing of the innovation and rule changes that brought us from the single wing to this era of wide open passing games, with the wishbone and “three yards and a cloud of dust” in between.
One constant throughout college football history, however, is Alabama competing for and winning national titles. Starting with their first in 1925, the Tide claim at least one title in eight different decades. More recently, Alabama has finished at #1 in six of the past twelve seasons.
The Tide are once again ranked atop the AP Poll headed into the 2021 season. Needless to say, there is plenty of history here as well. Alabama has been ranked #1 in the AP weekly poll 130 times, 25 more than runner up Ohio State. Florida is second in the SEC with 41 appearances.
Harrison Holland over at SI has some Saban era data for you.
Its number one national ranking has been a constant, too, with the Nick Saban-led Tide atop the AP Poll at some point of every season since 2008, his second as head coach of Alabama. The 13-year count is the longest in the history of the poll era.
While at Alabama, Saban has coached the top-ranked team in 86 games, 65 more games than Clemson’s Dabo Swinney who holds the second-highest mark among active head coaches.
Some view the top ranking as a curse, but if it is then Alabama has managed to do an awful lot of winning in spite of it. May the 2021 campaign be no different.
Only one more day before kickoff, folks.