With 100 days until the CFB kickoff I figured it was time to unveil the annual DB CFB preview.
Big East Champ - West Virginia. With Holgerson making the move from Stillwater this offense should be dominant in the Big East. If WVU can upset LSU early on this team could very well be 11-0 heading into the last game of the year in South Florida. USF has a real chance to get on the National radar with an opening day win at Notre Dame but at the end of the day WVU is head and shoulders above anyone in this league on both sides of the ball and will win the league outright.
ACC Champ - FSU - FSU is the sexy pick in the ACC once again but they do need to replace a 3 year starter at QB. With a ton of young talent returning on both sides of the ball and a league schedule that does not include VT or UNC and Miami at home shapes up nicely for FSU. OOC games vs. Oklahoma and at Florida will be tough but look for FSU to get into the ACCCG and move on to the Orange Bowl. Keep an eye on VT. Although they lost a lot of talent to the NFL the schedule also shapes up nicely for an early season run. If they can get consistent QB play the Hokies could very well have 10 or 11 wins headed into the ACCCG vs. Florida State. ACCCG FSU over VT
SEC Champ - Alabama - Arguably the most talented team in the country. The only reason they won't start #1 in the polls is the question mark at QB. Bama has arguably the best defense in the country and a top RB and Oline. That is the same recipe they won it all with a few years ago. With both LSU and Arkansas at home I see the Tide getting through to the SECCG even with a loss along the way (possibly at Florida). Although I think Florida is the best team in the SEC East I'm going with UGA as they get their toughest SEC games at home (Miss St and South Carolina). SECCG - Bame over UGA
Big 12 Champ - Oklahoma - Likely the #1 overall team in all the polls headed into the season and rightfully so. These guys are talented on both sides of the ball and return one of the best QBs in the country. With no Big 12 Title game there is 1 less opportunity for Big game Bob to fall on his face. Tallahassee in Sept will be a major hurdle and the Big 12 has its share of quality teams so despite the lofty ranking I do think the Sooners will slip up along the way. The league schedule is favorable with A&M and Missouri at home.
Big Ten Champ - Ohio State - Ohio State catches a break in that the Big Ten is now split and they're on the weaker side (at least this year). Wisconsin is the only team that should contend with them in the Leaders division and Ohio State gets them at home. I do think Nebraska will beat them in Lincoln which will lead to a rematch in the Big Ten Title game in which tOSU will prevail. Michigan State should have its best team in years but they schedule isn't nearly as easy as last year (thus they'll have a couple extra losses). Despite losing a ton of seniors take a look at the Iowa schedule. There is no reason they won't be 9-0 heading into a home game vs. Michigan State. 11-0 also possible headed into the season finale in Lincoln (which could act like a Big Ten semi-final game) with winner facing the Buckeyes. Big Ten Title game - tOSU over Nebraska
Pac 10 - Oregon - Oregon did lose most of its playmakers on the defensive side of the ball but this should be as explosive offense is as there is in the country. An opening game win vs. Top 5 LSU could springboard the Ducks to another undefeated season. In the Pac10 South I'm looking for Arizona State to surprise some people and end up as the sacrificial lamb for Oregon in the Title game. Stanford is a team that could very well find themselves back in a BCS bowl and they do get Oregon at home this season.
Pac10 Title Game - Oregon over Arizona State.
BCS At Large Teams
Notre Dame - In Brian Kelly's 2nd year I look for the Irish to be much improved. If they can start out 3-0 (USF, MIch, Mich State) they could very well find themselves undefeated headed into Palo Alto in the season finale. A more likely scenario is a 10-2 season (which will all but guarantee ND a BCS bid).
Boise State - I love the fact that the MWC moved the TCU game to the Blue Field once TCU decided to leave the conference. The MWC will be much more difficult for Boise to run the table but this team is nasty up front and Kellen Moore is as efficient as any QB around. With a very difficult game vs. UGA in Atlanta to start the year and the likes of Nevada, TCU and San Diego State on the schedule I think they'll stumble somewhere along the way but with a preseason top 7-10 ranking and an 11-1 record I don't see how a BCS bowl passes on them this time around.
Nebraska and Arkansas - I'm having a hard time justifying putting Nebraska in here after losing the Big 10 title game but at the end of the day I think they'll end up with 11-2 record and with that fanbase they'll be tough to say no to. Although it doesn't seem like much more than a tough OOC game I've got that Ark/Texas AM game in September as a game worth a BCS spot. Although I don't see Arkansas getting to the SECCG I do think they'll end up with 10 wins and that offense will be just as good despite the loss of Mallett. LSU is going to be very good but when I look at that schedule (Oregon, at WVU, at Bama, Arkansas, at Miss State, Florida) I just don't see how they finish with any less than 2-3 losses under Lesticles. Stanford could also be very good and they do get ND and Oregon at home. If they can get a split there and run the rest of the table they would get in but 2 losses and their lack of travel will hurt them.
I think Oregon could get to the Title game even with an LSU loss since they'll have lost early in the year and that loss (assuming its not a blowout) shouldn't drop them outside the top 10. They'll have games at Stanford, USC and a Pac12 title game to get them back in the picture come November. Hopefully its a BCS nightmare with 1 loss Oklahoma also in the mix. At the end of the day I'm going with Oregon over OU as the likely opponent for Bama because Oregon has a better shot at running the table.
National Title Game - Alabama over Oregon
Sugar Bowl - Arkansas over Notre Dame
Rose Bowl - Boise State over Ohio State
Orange Bowl - FSU over WVU
Fiesta Bowl - Oklahoma over Nebraska
Heisman Finalists - Kellen Moore, Luck, Trent Richardson but the winner will be LmJ
Other Notable Barstool teams
BC - Still very young on the offensive side of the ball. Tough start with Northwestern and at UCF. As long as they avoid the 0-2 start I think 7 wins is number.
Miami - The U is on their way back but the schedule is tough. 8-9 wins would be considered a step in the right direction (but they'll need a big recruiting class to really make me feel better.
Uconn - With only 1 game vs. a team in the top 40 the Huskies will get to a bowl. Although 7-8 wins is probably the max.
Cuse - Getting better but still a long way from competing on a weekly basis. I'm going to say 7-8 wins.
Iowa - Young team but a cake schedule for the first 2 months. I'm going to say 9 wins and a New Years Day bowl.
Best teams not in the BCS
2. Texas AM
4, Michigan State
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