Skip to main content

ESPN Ranks College Football's 10 Greatest Teams Of All-Time

A black-and-white photo of Johnny Rodgers running with the ball for Nebraska.

Nebraska wing back Johnny Rodgers (20) is steps ahead of Minnesota's Greg Engebos (47) after Rodgers received a short pass for a 15 yard gain in the first quarter of play.

In honor of the 150th anniversary of college football, ESPN has unveiled its ranking of the top 150 teams in college football history.

When you hear people talk about the best college football teams of all-time, the usual suspects (1995 Nebraska, 2001 Miami, the old Oklahoma dynasty etc.) are always mentioned. Every one of those units is represented in ESPN's top 10, but they aren't No. 1.

No, that accolade goes to the 1971 Nebraska Cornhuskers. Led by a stifling defense and the versatile Johnny Rodgers, the Huskers went 13-0 and rolled to a national title.

Here is the rest of ESPN's top 10 all-time college football teams.

  1. 1971 Nebraska
  2. 2004 USC
  3. 1972 USC
  4. 1995 Nebraska
  5. 2018 Clemson
  6. 2005 Texas
  7. 2001 Miami
  8. 1979 Alabama
  9. 1956 Oklahoma
  10. 2009 Alabama

Perhaps the most noteworthy thing about this list is the fact 2001 Miami, regarded by many as the gold standard of college football teams, is only No. 7. Also, that's a lot of respect shown to last year's undefeated Clemson outfit, which ESPN regards as one of the five best ever.

You can check out ESPN's full rankings here. The whole list is a fun trek through college football's illustrious history and worth a read.

In the meantime, feel free to debate what the Worldwide Leader got right and wrong here.