This is the preseason edition, a glimpse into what may predictions for the upcoming college football season will look like. I will release my updated Top 12 every Monday during the college football season.
It will be a fluid poll with great fluctuations depending on the matchups any given week. So if Florida gets bumped down, it might not because of anything they did, but because someone behind them has played and beaten a more impressive schedule at that point. Remember, in the end, it will even out if a team and their schedule shape up. This will not be a puppet poll or a copy-cat poll. I watch more college football than anyone I know and this will be a representation of what I see. After this week’s initial poll, teams will earn their ranking. I don’t care about what teams will do or what conference they play in, I am judging based on what that team has accomplished to that point in the year. I MAY think a team will never maintain that ranking, but that is not how I am ranking them. It’s how good they are, yes, but to me its more about what they’ve earned.
1) Florida- Gators have bring back an explosive offense and the best defense in the country. As Jerry often says, “what’s not to like!”
2) Texas– The Longhorns return 16 starters and have a chip on their should after the way last season ended.
3) Ohio State– The Terrelle Pryor show is about to begin, please be seated.
4) Oklahoma– Very interested to see how losing 4 OL and 2 WR affect the greatest offense in the history of college football, but the defense should be even better.
5) Virginia Tech– Offense will be tested on Saturday night vs. Alabama, but I think the Hokies defense and special teams will win the game.
6) LSU– The QB situation shouldn’t kill them, and their showing in their bowl game encourages the defense will rejoin the elite in college football.
7) California- As long as Kevin Riley protects the ball, the Bears have the running game and defense to knock an inexperienced USC team from its pirch.
8) TCU– The Horned Frogs have won 11 games 3 of the last 4 seasons and could do so again.
9) USC– A freshman quarterback starting (who threw 18 INT last year in HS) is not a good thing, I don’t care how good the pieces are around him.
10) Illinois– Surprise, surprise. Ron Zook can recruit so this team has plenty of talent and could come close to repeating their Rose Bowl season from 2 years ago.
11) Alabama– Extremely worrisome to lose 3 starting OL, including your All-American LT and C. Love the defense though.
12) Boise State– If they beat Oregon to open, they’ll finish higher than this, but I don’t think they will.
I think this should be a very interesting year, probably not as wild as 2007, but I think most of the top 12 could shuffle all year long. And don’t be surprised if my top 12 gets reshuffled a lot by next Monday.