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2010 College Football Preview

It seems like everyone has their own college football rankings and forecasts. And, most underestimate the strength of SEC football. We predict 6 Southeastern Conference teams will be in the top 25 in 2010 (more than any other conference). Here's the SEC Sports Fan Preseason Top 25:

1. Alabama: Most of the national champion’s talent and leadership returns and the Tide has the number three recruiting class. They’re a good bet to repeat as national champion and a near lock for a BCS bid.

2. Texas: The loss of team leader and QB Colt McCoy is offset by the strong BCS championship game showing of true freshman QB Garrett Gilbert; a player who was highly touted out of high school and will now take over at the helm. The team also brought in the nation’s second rated recruiting class and competes in the Big 12 rather than the deeper SEC conference.

3. Florida: Alabama’s rival for control of the SEC, and a national championship berth, had the nation’s top recruiting class by a long shot. However, the Gators also lost nine starters in the draft, including five day one talents and team leader Tim Tebow, and are likely in for a slight regression before bouncing back to dominance in 2011 and beyond.

4. Ohio State: Lost very little talent in the draft from a team that won the Rose Bowl last season, should see continued development of QB Terrell Pryor, and had a solid recruiting class. Expect another year of battling Penn State for the Big 10 title and possibly making a championship appearance if they don’t have any bad losses.

5. Oklahoma: The loss of Sam Bradford is huge but Oklahoma also has a tremendous amount of talent coming in from their top five recruiting class this year and continued development of last year’s outstanding group. They should tangle with Texas for the Big 12 crown again.

6. Boise State: The nation’s top mid-major should continue its string of excellence. The BS mid-major should slaughter all their divisional opponents again though a BCS bowl appearance will be a tough get considering the BCS’ traditional phobia of non-power conferences and the extremely poor quality of the Boise State-TCU Fiesta Bowl last year.

7. TCU: Much the same as Boise State….hopefully the two won’t end up playing in a BCS game together again. That’s one tradition I think everyone would like to avoid.

8. LSU: LSU did not lose key talent, should see more development, and had a top five recruiting class. The Tigers would be higher on this list except for the fact that they play in the SEC….and are therefore unlikely to miss the BCS bowls by default since only two slots are allowed per conference. But if either Florida or Alabama falters….watch out.

9. Ole Miss: Much like LSU, the Rebels would be even higher were it not for their in-conference rivals. Mississippi boasts top talent from 2009’s recruiting class that should see continued development as well as more talent coming in from a small but quality 2010 group. The Rebels did lose talented QB Jevan Snead but could turn that into an asset if they replace him with someone more consistent. While one should be wary of overrating them- like everyone did last year-this group could really surprise.

10. Penn State: This is Jo Pa’s team and it will be consistent….consistently good but not great. Penn State lost little of its talent and boasted a strong recruiting class, so it should again battle Ohio State for the Big Ten title. Ultimately, Penn States’ fate may depend on how much improvement we see in the rest of the Big Ten.

11. USC: College football’s biggest disappointment last season saw a lot of change in the offseason including the loss of Pete Carroll. While the replacement of Carroll with Lane Kiffin is suspect, his father Monte Kiffin should make use of USC’s tremendous defensive talent and turn it into a top flight squad while QB phenomenon Matt Barkley should grow into the role in his second year.

12. Virginia Tech: One of the most solid performers in the ACC, Virginia Tech should absolutely contend for the conference title and a BCS appearance.

13. Oregon: Last year’s Pac Ten winner lost the Rose Bowl last year but could get another shot at it depending on how well USC does this season. Nonetheless the team did lose some key talent.

14. Miami: The Hurricanes got another strong (though uncharacteristically thin) recruiting class this year. Combined with development from its younger players-who showed great promise last season-and a less deadly schedule, the U could really contend this year.

15. Notre Dame: The tragic death of its top recruit has cast a shadow on Notre Dame’s offseason, but it was an otherwise strong period for the Fighting Irish. The school replaced underachieving Charlie Weis with Cincinnati’s Brian Kelly-a winner everywhere he has ever coached. Moreover, the Irish brought in a very deep, though not spectacular recruiting class, which also gives them great depth at QB to replace the graduated Jimmy Clausen. Overall, the defense should improve (how could it not?) and the team should have more consistency this coming season….and the talent is definitely there for a contending push.

16. Iowa: The Big Ten’s surprise team last year lost some talent to the draft but still has a decent amount left….in a weaker Big Ten that might be enough to surprise us all again.

17.Brigham Young: The nation’s third fake mid-major should be excellent again this season….just not excellent enough to challenge TCU and Boise State for the mid-majors seat at the BCS table.

18. Utah: Utah is something of an enigma this season as last year’s team did quite well despite a number of young starters; this group could really surprise but, in such a weak division, they will have to win virtually every game to remain in the national conversation.

19. Georgia Tech: The ACC powerhouse lost a good amount of talent in the draft but should continue to perform well despite that. A deep recruiting class doesn’t hurt and Tech should contend for an ACC title again.

20. Pittsburg: Say what you will about Dave Wannstedt (and I’m from Chicago so trust me I can say a lot), but he has certainly made it work in Pittsburg. The team is a dark horse again this season and could win the Big East if Cincinnati suffers from the loss of Brian Kelly.

21. Wisconsin: The Badgers retained most of the talent on a 10-3 team….expect good things.

22. Michigan: Despite a truly embarrassing late season melt down last year, I expect good things from Michigan this season. The Wolverines have a top recruiting class for this season and should see great continued improvement from their new sophomores-especially talented QB Tate Forcier. This team has talent….and they will have to show it or Rich Rodriguez will be shown the door.

23. Florida State: Jimbo Fisher began his tenure at Florida State with a bang….his recruiting class was top ten and State’s best in years. He should bring a certain freshness to the sideline….don’t overrate this team yet but Fisher should bring them back to national relevance.

24. Georgia: The Bulldogs boast a good recruiting class and should improve on last season but they still lack difference makers.

25. Auburn: Props to Gene Chizik: getting the nation’s number four recruiting class for this season was monumentally impressive. It should help an already 8-5 team improve to….well who knows? We’ll see-all that is keeping them even this low was their 3-5 slide to finish the season….and the fact that they play in the heavyweight SEC division.

Looking for more NCAA college football players to pick? Check out our: 2010 College Football Fantasy Football Picks.

For more detail about the SEC teams, check out our 2010 SEC Football Preview and 2010 SEC Football Fantasy Football Picks.

What do you think?

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What Other Visitors Have Said

Click below to see contributions from other visitors to this page...

Michigan Ranked at #22 -- crazy! 
How on earth did you guys come up with Michigan being number 22? Yea, they might have Tate Forcier coming back but that's not the whole team! If you guys …

The Current State of College Football  
What a crazy couple of weeks it's been. All this talk of teams moving has millions of college football fans wondering what's going to happen next. …

Where is Arkansas? Not rated yet
I'm an LSU fan, so I am pleasantly surprised at your 8-slot pick. I hope we do that well, but I believe Arkansas is going to hurt a lot of sec west fan's …

Where is Arkansas? Not rated yet
I'm an LSU fan, so I am pleasantly surprised at your 8-slot pick. I hope we do that well, but I believe Arkansas is going to hurt a lot of sec west fan's …

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