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FSU, Florida rank in top 10 in all-time Associated Press football poll

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There is no doubt of the strength of the Florida football programs.

Ask your father.

Or your grandfather.

Or you great-grandfather.

In fact, the schools have always been close, from the time neither mattered very much to the time they were fighting for titles. So says The Associated Press, which has ranked its top 100 teams all-time. And despite late starts, FSU, Florida and Miami all rank in the historic top 13 football programs.

FSU, with three national titles, finished ranked ninth in the all-time AP poll. From Nov. 11, 1990-Sept. 9, 2001, the Seminoles were never ranked lower than 11th under coach Bobby Bowden. The Seminoles have been ranked No. 1 a total of 72 weeks.

Right behind the Seminoles is the University of Florida. The Gators, also with three titles, have been No. 1 a total of 41 weeks. The Gators had no top-three appearances before Nov. 26, 1984 and then 95 top-three appearances after.

The Hurricanes are 13th. They’ve been No. 1 67 weeks, and they’ve won five national titles. The Hurricanes made 367 of their poll appearances (80.13 percent) between Sept. 29, 1980-Jan. 4, 2006.

The top teams in the poll were Ohio State, Oklahoma and Notre Dame. Alabama, Southern California and Nebraska followed.

The differences, in some cases, are the age of the programs. FSU didn’t appear in a Top 25 until 1964. Florida’s first appearance was 1950. UM’s also was 1950.

USF’s program was ranked 94th.

Gary Shelton is one of the most recognized and honored sportswriters in the history of the state. He has won the APSE's national columnist of the year twice and finished in the top 10 eight times. He was named the Florida Sportswriter of the Year six times. Gary joined SaintPetersBlog in the spring, helping to bring a sports presence to the website. Over his time in sports writing, Gary has covered 29 Super Bowls, 10 Olympics, Final Fours, Masters, Wimbledons and college national championships. He was there when the Bucs won a Super Bowl, when the Lightning won a Stanley Cup and when the Rays went to a World Series. He has seen Florida, FSU and Miami all win national championships, and he covered Bear Bryant, Bobby Bowden and Don Shula along the way. He and his wife Janet have four children: Eric, Kevin, K.C. and Tori. To contact, visit garysheltonsports@gmail.com.

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