Alabama No. 1 in AP preseason poll

Alabama head coach Nick Saban speaks during his NCAA college football preseason media conference, Saturday, Aug. 10, 2013, at Bryant-Denny Stadium in Tuscaloosa, Ala. (AP Photo/Al.com, Vasha Hunt)

Photo by AP Photo/Al.com, Vasha Hunt

Alabama head coach Nick Saban speaks during his NCAA college football preseason media conference, Saturday, Aug. 10, 2013, at Bryant-Denny Stadium in Tuscaloosa, Ala. (AP Photo/Al.com, Vasha Hunt)

NEW YORK (AP) — Alabama will begin this season the way it ended the last two — No. 1.

Nick Saban's two-time defending national champions are top-ranked in The Associated Press preseason college football poll, with the Crimson Tide trying to become the first team to win three straight national titles.

Much like the BCS championship game against Notre Dame, the vote was an Alabama landslide. The Tide received 58 of 60 first-place votes from the media panel to easily outdistance No. 2 Ohio State and match Florida in 2009 for the highest percentage of first-place votes received in the 63-year history of the preseason rankings.

The Buckeyes received one first-place vote.

Oregon is No. 3, followed by Stanford and Georgia, which received the other first-place vote.

Notre Dame, coming off a 42-14 loss in the BCS championship game to Alabama, is No. 14.

Alabama won its record ninth AP national championship last season, third BCS title in the last four years under Saban, and became the first team to win back-to-back BCS championships.

The Tide is AP preseason No. 1 for the fourth time, and first since 2010. The only time has Alabama started and finished No. 1 was 1978, when Bear Bryant led the Crimson Tide to the fourth of its five national championships with him as coach. Now Saban's Tide is trying to accomplish something Bear's boys never could. Twice Alabama won back-to-back championships under Bryant, but couldn't get the third.

Saban is hoping senior stars such as quarterback AJ McCarron, linebacker C.J. Mosley, defensive end Ed Stinson and guard Anthony Steen have enough memories of what went wrong for the 2010 Alabama team to avoid it happening in 2013.

"You're in a position here where we have a lot of players that really haven't lost much," Saban said earlier this week. "They have to really want to be good for the sake of being good.

Alabama is 49-5 over the past four seasons, with three of those losses coming in '10.

"Most other teams are out there saying we've got something to prove," Saban said. "Well, this team has something to prove. It's a lot more difficult not to be a little bit complacent, not to keep the same accountability to being successful that's necessary. You've got to challenge yourself every day. You've got to challenge each other."

Since the poll started in 1936, 10 times has a school has won consecutive AP championships.

The Tide's task: complete the hat trick.

Alabama will also be trying to run the Southeastern Conference's streak of national championships to eight. For the second straight year, half the top five teams to start the season are from the SEC. Joining Alabama and Georgia are South Carolina at No. 6, Texas A&M at No. 7 and Florida at No. 10.

The Tide and Aggies meet Sept. 14 in College Station, Texas. A&M and Heisman Trophy winner Johnny Manziel handed Alabama its only loss last year. Whether Manziel will be eligible for the rematch remains in question while the NCAA investigates the Aggies' quarterback. ESPN has reported Manziel is under investigation for being paid to sign autographs.

No. 8 Clemson and No. 9 Louisville, led by two other Heisman-contender quarterbacks, round out the top 10. Tajh Boyd and Clemson take on Georgia at home in Week 1 and are the favorites to win the Atlantic Coast Conference. Teddy Bridgewater and the Cardinals are the heavy favorites to get back to the BCS for the second straight year out of the newly renamed American Athletic Conference.

McCarron also makes most of the preseason Heisman contender lists. He passed for 2,933 yards and 30 touchdowns with only three interceptions last season. Now in his third season as a starter, McCarron is the face of the Tide.

"Last year there were other people on the offense that had a lot of leadership qualities about them. So it really wasn't quite as important for (McCarron) to always be that guy, even though his position lends itself to that," Saban said. "I think that's a role he can be very good at and it will be important for our team that he is good at it."

The second 10 in the preseason rankings starts with No. 11 Florida State. No. 12 LSU gives the SEC six teams in the rankings, more than any other conference. The Big Ten and Pac-12 both have five.

The Big 12 has four teams ranked, all between Nos. 13-20, starting with Oklahoma State. Texas is No. 15, Oklahoma is No. 16 and TCU is No. 20.

Michigan is No. 17 and Big Ten rival Nebraska is No. 18.

Boise State is No. 19, the only team from a BCS non-automatic qualifying conference to make the preseason rankings.

The final five are No. 21 UCLA from the Pac-12; No. 22 Northwestern and No. 23 Wisconsin from the Big Ten; last year's preseason No. 1 Southern California is No. 24; and Oregon State from the Pac-12 at No. 25.

Record Pts Pv

1. Alabama (58) 13-1 1,498 1

2. Ohio St. (1) 12-0 1,365 3

3. Oregon 12-1 1,335 2

4. Stanford 12-2 1,294 7

5. Georgia (1) 12-2 1,249 t5

6. South Carolina 11-2 1,154 8

7. Texas A&M 11-2 1,104 t5

8. Clemson 11-2 1,083 11

9. Louisville 11-2 1,042 13

10. Florida 11-2 894 9

11. Florida St. 12-2 845 10

12. LSU 10-3 802 14

13. Oklahoma St. 8-5 755 NR

14. Notre Dame 12-1 748 4

15. Texas 9-4 677 19

16. Oklahoma 10-3 579 15

17. Michigan 8-5 531 24

18. Nebraska 10-4 382 25

19. Boise St. 11-2 328 18

20. TCU 7-6 323 NR

21. UCLA 9-5 286 NR

22. Northwestern 10-3 199 NR

23. Wisconsin 8-6 185 NR

24. Southern Cal 7-6 134 NR

25. Oregon St. 9-4 129 20

Others receiving votes: Michigan St. 95, Baylor 92, Virginia Tech 86, Miami 85, Arizona St. 53, Kansas St. 43, Fresno St. 36, Vanderbilt 19, Washington 17, N. Illinois 16, Mississippi 11, Utah St. 8, Georgia Tech 6, Arizona 3, Cincinnati 3, North Carolina 3, Penn St. 2, BYU 1.

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Comments » 32

Rock_E_Topp88 writes:

I am sick of not seeing the Vols in the Top 25 and have a very good feeling that is about to change! CBJ has us going in the right direction and I have a feeling we will surprise 1-2 teams this year.

ITS GREAT TO BE A TENNESSEE VOL!!!

Fishpants writes:

Couldn't you at least have changed the headline? I don't want to see "Roll Tide" on GoVols.com. You think back in '98 the Tuscaloosa paper had a "Go Vols" headline when we were #1?

keepitreal4vols writes:

KNS: This is Knoxville, home of Tennessee Volunteers and rival to Alabama. Know your audience. Don't EVER send me a app/text alert with "Roll Tide, Alabama's #1" EVER AGAIN!!!
And NEVER post an article in GoVolsXtra with Roll Tide as the headline.
DISGRACEFUL & DISRRESPECTFUL.
Alabama's ranking is not worthy of a text alert for Knoxville. Stick to traffic, weather, crime, i.e the important stuff when sending me an alert.
Geeeez.

Orange_Beach writes:

in response to NINEwillstillbesofine:

(This comment was removed by the site staff.)

They did get a vote in the USA Today poll.

SevenT writes:

in response to keepitreal4vols:

KNS: This is Knoxville, home of Tennessee Volunteers and rival to Alabama. Know your audience. Don't EVER send me a app/text alert with "Roll Tide, Alabama's #1" EVER AGAIN!!!
And NEVER post an article in GoVolsXtra with Roll Tide as the headline.
DISGRACEFUL & DISRRESPECTFUL.
Alabama's ranking is not worthy of a text alert for Knoxville. Stick to traffic, weather, crime, i.e the important stuff when sending me an alert.
Geeeez.

The Vol-Fan's neurotic obsession with Alabama Football is alive and well.

Rock_E_Topp88 writes:

in response to SevenT:

The Vol-Fan's neurotic obsession with Alabama Football is alive and well.

Says the mullet wearing fake Kensucky troll with 7 teeth.

Personal question = So you paid cubicle trolls have to even work on Saturday? Of course, when you get paid by hit count I guess you have to work every day you can. Glad I could help you make $0.25 Whatta loser.

GoVols_16 writes:

Surely, this must be a misprint. Alabama No.1 in the nation??? I can't believe it.

Next they'll tell us that somebody has actually walked on the moon.

licknpromise777#651578 writes:

Hard not to be no#1 when your recruiting is more like a draft. That OTackle Kujo or whatever his name is; is basically a tall gorilla in a football uniform. Will be interesting to see what RB's they throw on the field from Saban's 7 deep roster of 5 star RBs. I found it ironic that Derrick Henry who could have been Johnny RB at UT broke his leg in spring practice at Bama

DawgDayAfternoon writes:

It seems that what Vol fans want the KNS to be is nothing more than an echo chamber, where desperation moves, by a desperate program, to try and be even marginally relevant receive all the ink. You know, things like resorting to gimmicks such as changing your school colors at the drop of a hat.

Maybe they're focused on Bama today because teams that people are truly interested in -top 5 teams - aren't giddy about celebrating becoming the Gray Tide or the Graycoat Marching Band.

Rock_E_Topp88 writes:

in response to DawgDayAfternoon:

It seems that what Vol fans want the KNS to be is nothing more than an echo chamber, where desperation moves, by a desperate program, to try and be even marginally relevant receive all the ink. You know, things like resorting to gimmicks such as changing your school colors at the drop of a hat.

Maybe they're focused on Bama today because teams that people are truly interested in -top 5 teams - aren't giddy about celebrating becoming the Gray Tide or the Graycoat Marching Band.

Well if it isn't old man Jeffy Flowers. You really need to change your schtick....its so old. I sure hope you have not reproduced Flowers. If so, please pass my sympathy to your children. I cannot imagine growing up with you as a father figure. You really need professional help. Medicaid probably covers that and you are certainly old enough. ES&D. PLEASE.

mocsandvolsfan writes:

in response to DawgDayAfternoon:

It seems that what Vol fans want the KNS to be is nothing more than an echo chamber, where desperation moves, by a desperate program, to try and be even marginally relevant receive all the ink. You know, things like resorting to gimmicks such as changing your school colors at the drop of a hat.

Maybe they're focused on Bama today because teams that people are truly interested in -top 5 teams - aren't giddy about celebrating becoming the Gray Tide or the Graycoat Marching Band.

That's what all the top 5 team fans think anyhow.

The truth is that people pull for their own teams no matter who the top 5 are.

Why don't you just go back to your own site and pull something eruh... I mean pull FOR something.

murrayvol writes:

I'm shocked and dismayed but not so much as Urban Meyer will be if this plays out and the Buckeyes are forced to absorb yet another SEC curbstomping. Twould be a mind numbing experience.

Witch_Doctors writes:

in response to SevenT:

The Vol-Fan's neurotic obsession with Alabama Football is alive and well.

Witch Doctor ask again why are you here 7 days a week 14-16 hours a day? lol. Witch Doctor say hello keyboard insert in mouth. ha
Bones never lie.

ctwins writes:

6 yrs straight atop the AP for at least one poll at some point during the season. CNS has
another 5/6 yrs in this historic run. Thx Coach and Roll Tide....

As always great coverage of the CT provided by the KNS.

BIVOLAR_BEARE writes:

in response to ctwins:

6 yrs straight atop the AP for at least one poll at some point during the season. CNS has
another 5/6 yrs in this historic run. Thx Coach and Roll Tide....

As always great coverage of the CT provided by the KNS.

Where was the state of Connecticut mentioned?

bUTch_please writes:

in response to murrayvol:

I'm shocked and dismayed but not so much as Urban Meyer will be if this plays out and the Buckeyes are forced to absorb yet another SEC curbstomping. Twould be a mind numbing experience.

I would truly enjoy watching another one loss Alabama team close out the BCS era by putting ol' Adderall-breath back on the floor.

Witch_Doctors writes:

in response to ctwins:

6 yrs straight atop the AP for at least one poll at some point during the season. CNS has
another 5/6 yrs in this historic run. Thx Coach and Roll Tide....

As always great coverage of the CT provided by the KNS.

Witch Doctor say just because the University of Alabama is a fuel account through Pilot/Circle J you paid much much more for your diesel..Witch Doctor say yea suck on that Crimson Tide!(lol)
Bones never lie.

John_10065 writes:

in response to Rock_E_Topp88:

Says the mullet wearing fake Kensucky troll with 7 teeth.

Personal question = So you paid cubicle trolls have to even work on Saturday? Of course, when you get paid by hit count I guess you have to work every day you can. Glad I could help you make $0.25 Whatta loser.

7 teeth? He must have gotten a partial!

mocsandvolsfan writes:

in response to SevenT:

The Vol-Fan's neurotic obsession with Alabama Football is alive and well.

Neurotic?? do you know what it means? Of course you do because your Psychologist explains it to you at every appointment...that is when the warden lets you make those appointments.

mocsandvolsfan writes:

in response to NINEwillstillbesofine:

(This comment was removed by the site staff.)

Ok OK I'm sorry I left you out of the mix!!! Happy now?!!

'course your handle explains a lot to those who don't read many posts from the trolls. You're at least not hard to spot. You ARE a little bit hard to get past though as you're every other post. I personally don't care. Some of the trolls besides you may be getting a little jealous. And seeing as how they probably are dangerous??

just sayin'

Shake_Bake writes:

Let's see...we play Numbers 1, 3, 5, 6, and 10. We have to play 5 of the Top ten ranked teams in the Nation! Good grief, is it possible to have a more difficult schedule!!

Orange_Beach writes:

I heard CBJ is going to dress the team in their new gray uniforms when they go to Tuscaloosa so the grass stains on the back up of them show as bad.

philgreen5#410561 writes:

in response to Fishpants:

Couldn't you at least have changed the headline? I don't want to see "Roll Tide" on GoVols.com. You think back in '98 the Tuscaloosa paper had a "Go Vols" headline when we were #1?

Amen!... I love the Big Orange and don't care about the Tide. They are on top now, but it won't last forever.

orangecountyvols writes:

in response to Witch_Doctors:

Witch Doctor ask again why are you here 7 days a week 14-16 hours a day? lol. Witch Doctor say hello keyboard insert in mouth. ha
Bones never lie.

Witchy,

Excellent point. The troll three-some of Seven, Wilted Flowers, and "9 is so fine at being a troll" are just that............here. None of them can come forward and explain their purpose on GoVolsxtra. It's the usual case of jealousy,
( Seven, and 9 is a troll ) and frustration, ( Wilted Flowers ) since his envy consists of people who've been great players, something he never was.

These 3 are losers big time.

orangecountyvols writes:

Alabama?

McCarron not having to face Clowney and having to play Georgia State instead of the real Georgia......their best friend has been the schedule maker.

Alabama and Ohio State do deserve each other, considering their schedules.

DawgDayAfternoon writes:

in response to orangecountyvols:

Alabama?

McCarron not having to face Clowney and having to play Georgia State instead of the real Georgia......their best friend has been the schedule maker.

Alabama and Ohio State do deserve each other, considering their schedules.

The Tide's biggest scheduling gift has been playing the hapless Vols every year, as big an automatic win and every bit as certain as Georgia State. Everyone in the West would love to have the Vols as their permanent rival, especially now that you're the Big Gray .

Tru138 writes:

in response to SevenT:

The Vol-Fan's neurotic obsession with Alabama Football is alive and well.

As is the Kentucky fans obsession with Tennessee football. Thanks for playing, hero.

underthehill writes:

in response to DawgDayAfternoon:

The Tide's biggest scheduling gift has been playing the hapless Vols every year, as big an automatic win and every bit as certain as Georgia State. Everyone in the West would love to have the Vols as their permanent rival, especially now that you're the Big Gray .

Georgia has been very blessed by UT playing bama every year..means they didn't have to..as far as the Big Gray thing..I don't think UT gave much thought to what they'll hear when they go on the road..

gameofvols writes:

in response to Rock_E_Topp88:

Well if it isn't old man Jeffy Flowers. You really need to change your schtick....its so old. I sure hope you have not reproduced Flowers. If so, please pass my sympathy to your children. I cannot imagine growing up with you as a father figure. You really need professional help. Medicaid probably covers that and you are certainly old enough. ES&D. PLEASE.

I hope someone rips your nuts off to keep you from contaminating the rest of the world.....

stevefrommemphis writes:

Two potentially challenging games for Alabama, with an open date before each. Playing Kentucky in the SEC East while LSU has to play at Georgia and Florida. The SEC office is protecting their beloved Crimson Tide.

Johnny1football writes:

in response to stevefrommemphis:

Two potentially challenging games for Alabama, with an open date before each. Playing Kentucky in the SEC East while LSU has to play at Georgia and Florida. The SEC office is protecting their beloved Crimson Tide.

All games are on rotational basis set years before. The only break Alabama gets is to play the Vols every year!

Orange_Beach writes:

in response to stevefrommemphis:

Two potentially challenging games for Alabama, with an open date before each. Playing Kentucky in the SEC East while LSU has to play at Georgia and Florida. The SEC office is protecting their beloved Crimson Tide.

It's not Bama's fault they have to play the worst team in the SEC East every year either.

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