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There are two main historical college football polls that have separated themselves from the rest of the traditional polls. The Associated Press Top 25 is by and large the one that most folks like to look at, but right there with the AP Poll is the USA TODAY Coaches Poll. It has changed its namesake and sponsorship several times, now known as the USA TODAY Sports AFCA Coaches Poll.
Ohio State has been at or near the top more often than not, and now there’s some data to back up the Buckeyes being one of the best in the history of the poll thanks to Pete Fiutak of College Football News.
We’ve already looked at Ohio State’s place in the AP Poll (which is very similar), but according to the method used by Fiutak, the Buckeyes are also a monster in the USA TODAY Coaches Poll throughout history.
From College Football News:
CFN devised a scoring system giving every UPI/USA TODAY national champion 25 points, the No. 2 team 24, No. 3 23, and so on down to the bottom of the top 20 in the early years, and then it became the top 25 after USA TODAY took over.
So let’s see what the top 25 looks like. Here are the top 25 historical programs when it comes to ranking them based on appearances in the USA TODAY Coaches Poll, starting from No. 25 down to No. 1.
Nov 18, 2017; Oxford, MS, USA; Texas A&M Aggies helmets after the game against the Mississippi Rebels at Vaught-Hemingway Stadium. Texas A&M Aggies defeated the Mississippi Rebels 31-24. Credit: Justin Ford-USA TODAY Sports
Oct 26, 2013; Seattle, WA, USA; Carol James, wife of the late former coach Don James, greets Washington Huskies quarterback Keith Price (17) before a game against California Golden Bears at Husky Stadium. Credit: Joe Nicholson-USA TODAY Sports
The helmet Drew Ott wore during his playing days at Iowa sits on a cupboard in him and his wife Kali’s home in Trumbull, NE on Thursday, May 16, 2019. Credit: USA TODAY Sports
Clemson offensive lineman Sean Pollard (76) and running back Darien Rencher (21) join teammates in the alma mater after the Tigers beat Alabama 44-16 to win the National Championship after the College Football Championship game at Levi’s Stadium in Santa Clara, California Monday, January 7, 2019. Credit: USA TODAY Sports Network
Nov 9, 2019; Madison, WI, USA; A Wisconsin Badgers helmet during the game against the Iowa Hawkeyes at Camp Randall Stadium. Credit: Jeff Hanisch-USA TODAY Sports
Oct. 12, 2019; Columbia, MO, USA; A general view of a Mississippi Rebels helmet during the game against the Missouri Tigers at Memorial Stadium/Faurot Field. Denny Medley-USA TODAY Sports
AUBURN, AL – AUGUST 30: Arkansas Razorbacks mascot Big Red flexes during the game against the Auburn Tigers at Jordan Hare Stadium on August 30, 2014, in Auburn, Alabama. (Photo by Mike Zarrilli/Getty Images)
Michigan State mascot Sparty takes the field before the Youngstown State game at Spartan Stadium in East Lansing on Saturday, Sept. 11, 2021. Credit: USA TODAY Sports Network
Sep 4, 2021; Pasadena, California, USA; UCLA Bruins wide receiver Kyle Philips (2) celebrates with offensive lineman Paul Grattan (65) offensive lineman Jon Gaines II (57) and tight end Greg Dulcich (85) his touchdown scored against the Louisiana State Tigers during the second half the at the Rose Bowl. Credit: Gary A. Vasquez-USA TODAY Sports
Aug 31, 2019; Arlington, TX, USA; Auburn Tigers mascot Aubie the Tiger celebrates with cheerleaders after the victory against the Oregon Ducks at AT&T Stadium. Credit: Matthew Emmons-USA TODAY Sports
September 5, 2008; Gainesville FL, USA; Florida Gators quarterback Tim Tebow (15) celebrates with teammates after he scored a touchdown during the first half against the Charleston Southern Buccaneers at Ben Hill Griffin Stadium. Credit: Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports
Oct 30, 2021; Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, USA; Miami Hurricanes helmets sit on the sidelines against the Pittsburgh Panthers during the third quarter at Heinz Field. Credit: Charles LeClaire-USA TODAY Sports
Sep 9, 2006; Knoxville, TN, USA; Tennessee Volunteers head coach Philip Fulmer watches his team prepare for the game with the Air Force Falcons at Neyland Stadium. Credit: Photo by Dale Zanine USA TODAY Sports Copyright (c) 2006 Dale Zanine
College Football Playoff Eliminator for week 11: Alabama still alive? Nov 9, 2019; Tuscaloosa, AL, USA; LSU Tigers quarterback Joe Burrow (9) signals touchdown during the second half of an NCAA college football game against the Alabama Crimson Tide at Bryant-Denny Stadium. Credit: Butch Dill-USA TODAY Sports
Georgia running back Kenny McIntosh (6) breaks away from Alabama defensive back Jordan Battle (9) during the second half of the Southeastern Conference championship NCAA college football game between Georgia and Alabama in Atlanta, on Saturday, Dec. 4, 2021. Credit: USA TODAY Sports Network
BOB SELF/The Times-Union-1/1/10–FSU head coach Bobby Bowden holds Osceola’s burning spear aloft before planting it into the turf in front of his players before the start of Friday’s Gator Bowl game which saw the Seminoles winning with a final score of 33 to 21.
Apr 24, 2021; Austin, Texas, USA; Texas Longhorns helmet lays on the field after the Orange-White Texas Spring Game at Darrell K Royal-Texas Memorial Stadium. Credit: Scott Wachter-USA TODAY Sports
Oct 23, 2021; University Park, Pennsylvania, USA; Penn State Nittany Lions offensive lineman Rasheed Walker (53) and linebacker Jesse Luketa (40) and safety Jaquan Brisker (1) and safety Jonathan Sutherland (0) walk on the field for the coin flip prior to the game Illinois Fighting Illini at Beaver Stadium. Credit: Rich Barnes-USA TODAY Sports
Sep 7, 2019; Los Angeles, CA, USA; Southern California Trojans white horse mascot Traveller during the game against the Stanford Cardinal at Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum. USC defeated Stanford 45-20. Credit: Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports
Aug 1994; E. Rutherford, NJ, USA; FILE PHOTO; Nebraska Cornhuskers head coach Tom Osborne talks to quarterback Tommie Fraizer during the 1994 season at Giants Stadium. Credit: Photo By USA TODAY Sports
Sep 5, 2021; Tallahassee, Florida, USA; Notre Dame Fighting Irish wide receiver Joe Wilkins Jr. (5) celebrates with running back Kyren Williams (23) after a touchdown in the second quarter against the Florida State Seminoles at Doak S. Campbell Stadium. Credit: Melina Myers-USA TODAY Sports
Michigan fans pour onto the field after the Wolverines’ 40-34 victory over Ohio State at Michigan Stadium on Saturday, Nov. 26, 2011, in Ann Arbor. Credit: USA TODAY Sports Network
Jan 11, 2021; Miami Gardens, Florida, USA; Alabama Crimson Tide head coach Nick Saban leads his team onto the field before playing then Ohio State Buckeyes in the 2021 College Football Playoff National Championship Game. Credit: Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports
CFN: Top 25 college football programs of all-time using the AP Poll Jan 12, 2015; Arlington, TX, USA; Ohio State Buckeyes quarterback Cardale Jones (12) and mascot Brutus celebrates with the College Playoff trophy after the game against the Oregon Ducks in the 2015 CFP National Championship Game at AT&T Stadium. Credit: Matthew Emmons-USA TODAY Sports

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