The Georgia football team will begin the season ranked No. 12 in the Associated Press poll, which is its lowest preseason rank since 2011, but marks a return to the poll after being unranked to finish last season.
The Bulldogs' first two opponents are relatively close to them in the poll: No. 16 Clemson and No. 9 South Carolina.
Otherwise, the only other Georgia regular-season opponents that start the season ranked are No. 6 Auburn and No. 24 Missouri.
There are eight SEC teams ranked in the poll, including No. 2 Alabama, No. 13 LSU, No. 18 Ole Miss and No. 21 Texas A&M.
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Georgia was also No. 12 in the USA Today coaches poll, which was released three weeks ago.
Georgia opened last year at No. 5 in both the AP and coaches polls, and was No. 7 after a 4-1 start. But the loss to Missouri, on the heels of numerous injuries to key offensive players, eventually sent the Bulldogs out of the top 25.
Georgia began the 2012 season at No. 6 in both polls, and finished the season No. 5 in the AP poll and No. 4 in the coaches poll.
Three years ago, Georgia was unranked in the preseason, but finished at No. 19 in the AP poll and No. 20 in the coaches poll.
Once again I am on the voting panel. Here is how my ballot looked:
1. Florida State
5. Ohio State
8. Michigan State
10. South Carolina
16. Kansas State
24. Virginia Tech
25. Oklahoma State