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Tide top AP preseason poll for 9th time

(AP Photo/Lynne Sladky, File)

With two of the best players in the country leading the way - and a championship game loss as motivation - Alabama is No. 1 in The Associated Press preseason college football poll for the second straight season and ninth time overall.

Heisman Trophy winner Bryce Young, national defensive player of year Will Anderson Jr. and the Crimson Tide received 54 of 63 first-place votes and 1,566 points in the Top 25 presented by Regions Bank released on Monday.

Ohio State is No. 2 with six first-place votes (1,506 points) from the media panel and defending national champion Georgia is third with three first-place votes (1,455 points). Clemson is No. 4. Notre Dame rounds out the top five, setting up a tantalizing opener at Ohio State on Sept. 3.

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Clemson counting on 'Avengers' D-line

CLEMSON, S.C. (AP) No. 4 Clemson is pinning its hopes of another championship run on "The Avengers."

The Tigers, 10-3 in 2021 but out of ACC contention by midseason, have a stacked defensive line with experience and depth. They've named themselves after the movie superheroes.

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Venables handles early test at Oklahoma

NORMAN, Okla. (AP) Brent Venables got his first welcome-to-the-hot-seat moment well before his first game as Oklahoma's new coach.

He attacked that controversy the same way he took on ball-carriers as a gritty, undersized linebacker at Kansas State -- head on.

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USC, UCLA exits could cost schools $13M

LOS ANGELES (AP) The departures of Southern California and UCLA from the Pac-12 Conference could mean an estimated loss of around $13 million per year in media rights for each of the remaining schools, according to an interim report issued by University of California Office of the President.

The report was released Wednesday during a Board of Regents meeting held at UCLA to address its move to the Big Ten Conference in 2024.

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Vanderbilt LB Capers to miss season

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) Vanderbilt sophomore defensive end-linebacker Miles Capers will miss the season with an injured knee requiring surgery.

Coach Clark Lea announced Capers' season-ending injury Wednesday. From Sumter, South Carolina, Caper hurt a knee in practice this week.

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Kemp touts Bulldogs' 4-peat in 2025

ATLANTA (AP) Georgia's governor has high hopes for his alma mater.

With Atlanta set to become the first two-time host of college football's national championship game in 2025, Brian Kemp sees no reason the Georgia Bulldogs can't be going for their fourth straight title that year - while taking a jab at Atlanta Mayor Andre Dickens.

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Arkansas in SEC mix, loaded in backfield

FAYETTEVILLE, Ark. (AP) Arkansas was last in this position - coming off a season of nine wins or more - 10 years ago. Except this offseason, there was no program-altering motorcycle crash.

Sam Pittman - the antithesis, personality-wise, to coach Bobby Petrino, whose wreck in April 2012 turned into a scandal that cost him his job - led the Razorbacks to a 9-4 record last season, capping it with the Razorbacks' first New Year's Day bowl since 2000 and a win over Penn State.

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LSU QB Brennan retires before 6th season

BATON ROUGE, La. (AP) LSU quarterback Myles Brennan has decided to end his college football career after five seasons with the Tigers.

The 23-year-old Brennan, who announced his decision on Monday, spent his first three years at LSU as a backup. He was named the starter in 2020, only to have that season cut short by an abdominal injury after three starts in which he passed for 1,112 yards and 11 touchdowns.

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Former Texas great FB Worster dies at 73

AUSTIN, Texas (AP) Steve Worster, the powerful fullback in a bruising wishbone offense that led Texas to the undisputed national championship in 1969 and the brink of another a year later, died Saturday. He was 73.

The Texas athletic department announced the death, for which no cause was given.

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Irish name QB Buchner starter, lose WR

SOUTH BEND, Ind. (AP) Notre Dame receiver Avery Davis will miss the season after tearing a ligament in his right knee.

Notre Dame also announced Saturday sophomore quarterback Tyler Buchner will start the opener against Ohio State on Sept. 3.

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