Top Football Programs of All-time

Although this report has several traces of discretion littered throughout it, the numbers are not debatable. The percentages that are used in to calculate the final score for each team is, however, up to the writers' discretion and those numbers are as follows: All time winning percentage (30% of score), National titles (25% of score), All time poll points (20% of score), All time wins (15% of score), and Conference titles (10% of total score).

Introduction | Top 30 Programs | Top 69 Programs

All-time winning percentage
This is a subject that cannot be debated. Very simply the NCAA compiles this statistic by taking the number of wins plus have of the number of ties divided by all games played. Because this is the procedure that the NCAA uses, we decided that it was best to use this formula as well. 

National titles
Although this is an often-debated category of college football, we decided to recognize only the national titles that have been recognized by either the Associated Press or the Coaches' Poll (either the USA Today/ESPN or the UPI). This will eliminate colleges like Michigan claiming that they have several national titles, which are not recognized or that took place before the first AP poll in 1936. In the situation that there was a split national title (example: 1990 Georgia Tech and Colorado) each team received one point for its share of the national title. In the case of a unanimous national champion as was the case in 1980 with Georgia, a team would receive 2 points for winning both polls. Before 1950 there was only one recognized poll, the AP, and therefore a team winning a national title before 1950 is rewarded with 2 points for being the only national title winner that season. Minnesota is a good example of this as the Gophers have won 4 national titles receiving 8 total points. 3 of the national titles came before the Coaches Poll, but Minnesota gets it's full points because of the method that we used. 

All-time Poll points
Once again, the AP poll was the only poll in existence from 1936 through 1949, but the ranking of the all time poll points is as a result of both the AP Poll from 1936 to the present as well as the Coach's Poll from 1950 to the present (UPI Poll from 1950 to 1995, USA Today/ESPN from 1996 to the present). Teams that were ranked from 1936 to 1949 in the AP Poll do not receive double points for their place in the AP Poll that season. That would reward the teams powerful in that era. Points for a 1st place finish in a poll are 25 points, 2nd gets 24 and on down to 25th receiving 1 point. All of points from all of the years for both the AP and Coach's Polls give the total amount for this category. 

All-time wins
In this category, their can be no arguments. We either looked up the all time wins for each school via conference media guides (SEC), conference websites, or we called the conferences and they provided us with that information. 

All-time conference titles
This information was also asked of the conference media relations. Often schools have switched conferences or combined conferences. Some schools like Notre Dame have never been in a conference. Nonetheless, conference titles are not only for conferences that are in place today, but also include championships from the Southern Conference, the Border Conference, the Big 4 and the Pac 8. All conference titles that were found were included in this project. 

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