Tom Dienhart, Senior Writer, August 17, 2013

Urban Meyer
US Presswire

The AP has released its preseason poll-and to the shock of no one, Alabama is No. 1.

The Crimson Tide has won three of the last four national championships, bringing back many key players from last year?s squad that dumped Notre Dame in the BCS title game.

Ohio State is No. 2, as the Buckeyes seek their first national championship since 2002. That was the last time a Big Ten team won the national title. The Buckeyes played for the BCS title after the 2006 and 2007 seasons, losing to Florida and LSU.

Ohio State was No. 2 in the coaches poll that was released earlier this month. The Buckeyes are clearly the top team in the Big Ten, led by quarterback Braxton Miller and a plethora of skill talent back on offense. And the defense teems with athletic ability, led by perhaps the top secondary in the Big Ten for a program coming off a 12-0 debut for Urban Meyer.

By the way: Meyer won a national title at Florida in his second season and went unbeaten in his second season at Utah. Oh, and Jim Tressel won his national title in his second season in Columbus.

Other Big Ten teams ranked in the AP include: Michigan at No. 17; Nebraska at No. 18; Northwestern at No. 22; Wisconsin at No. 23.

This looks right to me, though I still like the Cornhuskers to win the Legends over the Wolverines.

Michigan State is a team to watch as a possible underdog. If the Spartans work out kinks on offense, they could win the Legends behind a great defense.

About Tom Dienhart senior writer Tom Dienhart is a veteran sports journalist who covers Big Ten football and men's basketball for and BTN TV. Find him on Twitter and Facebook, read all of his work at, and subscribe to his posts via RSS. Also, send questions to his weekly mailbag using the form below and read all of his previous answers in his reader mailbag section.

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