The Georgia Bulldogs will begin the 2021 season as one of the top-ranked teams, as Kirby Smart’s team came in at No. 5 in the initial AP Poll for the 2021 season.
The Bulldogs ended the 2020 season ranked No. 7 in the final polls, but will be led by returning quarterback JT Daniels. Georgia went 4-0 in starts made by Daniels in the 2020 season.
“I am really pleased with where JT is with his leadership and commanding the offense,” Smart said of his quarterback following Saturday’s scrimmage. “I think he would admit that he could have had a better day than he did today, and he knows that. That is not all on him. That is on everybody including me, the offensive staff and all of the guys to keep improving. That is why we do this. We do this to find out where we are, and then we will move from there.”
Related: Kirby Smart pleased with JT Daniels, explains offensive struggles in scrimmage
Georgia’s opening foe is also among the top teams in the country, as the Clemson Tigers came in at No. 3. Alabama is ranked first, with Oklahoma and Ohio State rounding at the top-5. The Bulldogs did receive three first-team votes in the poll, though well behind Alabama’s 47. Clemson and Oklahoma each got six first-place votes while Ohio State received one.
Clemson is one of just two teams on Georgia’s 2021 schedule that begin the season ranked, with the other being the No. 13 Florida Gators. Those two teams meet in Jacksonville on Oct. 30, with the winner of that game widely expected to take home the SEC East.
The Bulldogs are one of five SEC teams ranked, as Texas A&M is No. 6, LSU at No. 16.
Georgia was similarly ranked in the first Coaches Poll of the 2021 season, as the Bulldogs came in at No. 5 in that poll.
Georgia and Clemson will open the season on Sept. 4 with the game being played in Charlotte. Kickoff is set for 7:30 p.m. and ABC will broadcast the game.
To see the full AP Poll rankings, see below.
AP Poll 2021 Preseason rankings
4. Ohio State