Boise State will begin the season ranked No. 5. The Broncos, like Alabama, finished last season 14-0. They beat TCU in the Fiesta Bowl.
The Crimson Tide got 55 of 59 possible first place votes. The other four went to Ohio State, which is No. 2 in the newspaper's ranking.
Florida is third, followed by Texas, which lost to Alabama in the BCS title game in January.
Virginia Tech was sixth, followed by TCU, Oklahoma, Nebraska and Iowa to round out the top 10.
Nos. 11-15 are Oregon, Wisconsin, Miami, Penn State and Pittsburgh. They were followed by LSU, Georgia Tech, North Carolina, Arkansas and Florida State, which will be without Bobby Bowden as coach for the first time in 35 years.
Georgia is No. 21, Oregon State No. 22, Auburn No. 23 and Utah and West Virginia tied for No. 24.
The coaches' poll is part of the BCS formula used to determine its national champion.