The Crimson Tide received 57 of 61 first-place votes from the media panel after its 26-23 overtime win Monday night. UCF received the other four and finished with the best ranking in the history of the program. The Knights are the first team to finish the season undefeated and not win a national title since TCU in 2010.
The national championship is the 12th for the Crimson Tide and fifth under coach Nick Saban since 2009. Saban joins the late Alabama coach Paul "Bear" Bryant as the only coaches with five AP titles.
Alabama is the first preseason No. 1 to finish No. 1 since USC in 2004 and the 11th overall. For the fourth time, two teams from the same conference finished Nos. 1 and 2. The past three times it has happened involved SEC teams at the top (2007, 2011 and now 2017).
Washington State, which lost to Michigan State 42-17 in the San Diego County Credit Union Holiday Bowl, was the only team ranked in the final regular-season poll to fall out of the Top 25 after the bowl season. NC State moved in after beating Arizona State 52-31 in the Hyundai Sun Bowl and finished No. 23.
Information from The Associated Press was used in this report.