Skip to main content

Nick Saban's Final Coaches' Poll Top 25 Ballot Revealed

Head coach Urban Meyer of the Ohio State Buckeyes shakes hands with head coach Nick Saban of the Alabama Crimson Tide in an SEC vs. Big Ten football showdown.

NEW ORLEANS, LA - JANUARY 01: (L-R) Head coach Urban Meyer of the Ohio State Buckeyes shakes hands with head coach Nick Saban of the Alabama Crimson Tide prior to the All State Sugar Bowl at the Mercedes-Benz Superdome on January 1, 2015 in New Orleans, Louisiana. (Photo by Streeter Lecka/Getty Images)

Ohio State's top-four ranking has been a point of contention for weeks leading up to the final round of College Football Playoff rankings on Sunday. The dissent not only extended to fans and analysts, but to some top-ranked coaches as well.

Nick Saban was one of the nation's seven coaches to rank the Buckeye's outside of the playoff in the USA Today Coaches' Poll released on Monday.

The Alabama coach gave fellow SEC squad Texas A&M the nod at No. 4, pushing Ohio State down just two spots to No. 5. Saban and the Crimson Tide routed the Aggies 52-24 in Week 2.

It's fair to say Nick Saban meant no disrespect to the Buckeyes by notching them down a spot in his top 25, likely chalking up his decision to some inter-conference favoritism. Here's his full ballot:

Nick Saban, Alabama

1. Alabama

2. Clemson

3. Notre Dame

4. Texas A&M

5. Ohio State

6. Cincinnati

7. Oklahoma

8. Florida

9. Georgia

10. Indiana

11. Coastal Carolina

12. Iowa State

13. North Carolina

14. Iowa

15. Southern California

16. Northwestern

17. Brigham Young

18. Miami (Fla.)

19. Louisiana-Lafayette

20. Texas

21. Oklahoma State

22. San Jose State

23. North Carolina State

24. Oregon

25. Tulsa

Another top program's coach definitely ruffled some feathers with his ranking on Monday, though.

Dabo Swinney made his position that a six-win team shouldn't be in the playoff very clear with his top 25 choices. The Clemson coach dropped OSU all the way out of the top 10 to No. 11. Ahead of the Buckeyes, Swinney ranked Iowa State, Coastal Carolina, Florida, Georgia and others.

With a Clemson vs. Ohio State Sugar Bowl matchup looming, Swinney could just be playing some mind games with Ryan Day and his undefeated squad. That, or the Tigers coach truly believes the Buckeyes haven't proved themselves as a top team in their shortened season.

Either way, the CFP rankings that actually matter are locked in.

No. 2 Clemson will face No. 3 Ohio State and No. 1 Alabama will battle No. 4 Notre Dame on Jan. 1.