Coaches pick Alabama at No. 1 to kick off 2017 season

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Thursday, August 3, 2017

The Alabama Crimson Tide may be starting the season as the No. 1 team in the preseason coaches' Top 25 poll, but it won't take long for that ranking to be tested.

The No. 3 Florida State Seminoles will be lying in wait as the two programs will face off in their season openers on Sept. 2 in Atlanta.

Alabama, which also opened at No. 1 last season, received 49 of the 65 first-place votes in the poll, with the others going to No. 2 Ohio State(5), Florida State (4) and No. 5 Clemson(7).

It is the fourth time that Alabama coach Nick Saban will open as the favorite in the coaches' poll. All three previous times, however, the Crimson Tide have failed to win the national title, including last year's loss to Clemson in the CFP National Championship Game.

The last preseason No. 1 in the coaches' poll to win the national title was USCin 2004. The Trojans open this season atNo. 4.

Ohio State was one of four Big Ten teams to rank among the top 10, as it was joined by No. 6 Penn State, No. 9 Michiganand No. 10 Wisconsin.

No. 7 Washingtonand No. 8 Oklahomarounded out the top 10.

Overall, the SEC placed six teams in the top 25, with Alabama joined by LSU (12), Auburn (13), Georgia (15), Florida (16) and Tennessee (24). The Big 12 and ACC placed five teams in the poll.

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