Every BCS Team's All-American Hopeful in 2013
While some teams may not have a legitimate All-American hopeful each year and others might have more than one, there is still one player on every college football team that the coach or rest of the players can turn to in times of need.
Becoming an All-American is no easy task, but every BCS team has a player with the potential to do so.
This slideshow will not necessarily feature the best player on each team or the most important player. It will instead discuss one player from each BCS team with the best chance to become an All-American at his position.
Here is the top All-American hopeful for every BCS team heading into the 2013 season.
*BYU and Notre Dame are included with the teams from BCS conferences
Alabama Crimson Tide: LB C.J. Mosley
Alabama has a few guys who might be slightly better or more important than Mosley, but he is its top All-American hopeful for 2013.
The linebacker is the top returning player on what should be another very talented defense.
While quarterback A.J. McCarron might be the most important player on the team and running back T.J. Yeldon could be the most talented, it is Mosley who might be the All-American.
He is a tackling machine and the go-to guy on the Crimson Tide defense.
Arizona Wildcats: RB Ka'Deem Carey
Arizona running back Ka'Deem Carey led the country in rushing yards a season ago, and if he duplicates that production in 2013, there is no question that he will be an All-American.
Carey finished the 2012 season with 1,929 yards and 23 touchdowns on 303 carries.
He was a workhorse for Rich Rodriguez, and if he can stay healthy and get as many carries as he did a season ago, he could go over the 2,000-yard mark.
It is very likely that he could be a first-team All-American in 2013.
Arizona State Sun Devils: DT Will Sutton
Arizona State defensive tackle Will Sutton decided to come back for his senior season and he should be one of the best defensive linemen in the Pac-12 next year.
Sutton is a space eater in the middle of the line and likely could have been a high draft pick this year if he had bolted to the NFL.
He was an All-American last season, and if he produces like he did a season ago, he will be an All-American once again.
There is no question that Sutton has the best chance on the Sun Devils to be an All-American in 2013.
Arkansas Razorbacks: DE Trey Flowers
Even though Arkansas struggled in 2012, one bright spot on the Razorbacks roster was defensive end Trey Flowers.
Flowers finished the season with six sacks and will be entering his junior campaign in 2013.
For him to become an All-American, the Razorbacks will need to have a little more success than they did last season. They should be able to improve upon a 4-8 record, but it is still unlikely that Flowers will become an All-American.
Still, he certainly has the talent to earn such honors.
Auburn Tigers: RB Tre Mason
Auburn is another team that struggled mightily last season and will certainly need better play from the quarterback position to be a factor in the SEC in 2013.
Running back Tre Mason has the best chance of any Tiger to become an All-American next season.
The running back rushed for 1,002 yards with eight touchdowns on 171 carries in 2012. While those are not astronomical numbers, Mason will now get the bulk of the carries with Onterrio McCaleb now gone.
Look for Auburn to improve in 2013 and for Mason's numbers to go up in the process.
Baylor Bears: RB Lache Seastrunk
There is little doubt who the most likely All-American on the Baylor roster is.
Running back Lache Seastrunk would get even more carries if he did not have Glasco Martin in the backfield with him.
That still does not take away from the fact that he is one of the most explosive players in the country.
In 2012, Seastrunk rushed for 1,012 yards and seven touchdowns on only 131 carries. If he can get somewhere around 200 touches, he is likely to be an All-American and possibly be in the Heisman Trophy conversation, as he guaranteed that he would be a few months ago.
Boston College Eagles: LB Steele Divitto
Boston College has struggled mightily in recent seasons, but one bright spot along the defense has been linebacker Steele Divitto.
Divitto is the best returning player on the defensive side of the ball, and will be the leader on a defense that has had some talented tacklers over the years.
He posted 93 stops a season ago and possibly played in the best positional group on the roster alongside the departed Nick Clancy and Kevin Pierre-Louis.
Divitto also had six passes defensed. While it is not likely that he will be an All-American, he is the closest thing the Eagles have.
BYU Cougars: LB Kyle Van Noy
No question who the choice is here, as BYU linebacker Kyle Van Noy is one of the best players in the country and could have been selected in the first round of the 2013 NFL draft.
Van Noy did not post high tackling numbers last season, but he has as much talent as almost any linebacker in college football.
Look for a huge season from this guy in 2013, with a strong possibility that he could crack an All-American list if the Cougars can string together some victories.
California Golden Bears: WR Chris Harper
California wide receiver Chris Harper may not be a household name, but the sophomore could have a breakout season for the Golden Bears in 2013.
As a true freshman in 2012, Harper caught 41 passes for 544 yards and two touchdowns. With star wideout Keenan Allen moving on to the NFL, Harper will be the go-to guy in an offense that will primarily feature a passing attack under new head coach Sonny Dykes.
With the way he ran the Louisiana Tech offense, Dykes will be throwing the ball all over the field for the Golden Bears in 2013.
That could bode well for Harper and give him a slim chance to become an All-American.
Central Florida Knights: QB Blake Bortles
Central Florida will be playing its first season at the major level, as the Knights are becoming members of the Big East.
Quarterback Blake Bortles is without question the best returning player on the roster, and the most likely to be an All-American.
Last season as a sophomore he passed for 3,059 yards with 25 touchdowns and only seven interceptions.
Look for those numbers to be just as good even in the Big East and him to be in the conversation for an all-conference selection.
Cincinnati Bearcats: RB Ralph David Abernathy IV
Cincinnati all-purpose running back Ralph David Abernathy IV might not be the most talented player on the roster, but he is the most likely to become an All-American because of his kick return potential.
With news that fellow running back Jameel Poteat will transfer, that means Abernathy will be the go-to guy on offense.
Where he will become an All-American, however, is in his big play ability as a kick returner. He is one of the best in the country and is a threat to score every time he touches the ball.
While linebacker Greg Blair might be the most talented player on the team, Abernathy clearly has the best shot to become an All-American.
Clemson Tigers: WR Sammy Watkins
Clemson has some very talented players on offense, and while quarterback Tajh Boyd is the team's most important player, the best chance at All-American status is wide receiver Sammy Watkins.
Boyd will be going up against a lot of very talented quarterbacks, while Watkins will be one of the best wide receivers in the country.
In 2012, he caught 57 passes for 708 yards and three touchdowns despite missing three games.
This guy is a solid pick to be an All-American in 2013.
Colorado Buffaloes: FB Christian Powell
Christian Powell is a mixture of a fullback and running back.
During his true freshman season in 2013, he rushed for 691 yards and seven touchdowns on 158 carries, while converting from fullback to running back.
Colorado struggled mightily last season, going 1-11 on the year, and it might not get much better in 2013.
With that being said, it would be hard to imagine any All-American coming from this team next season.
Connecticut Huskies: LB Yawin Smallwood
Connecticut is no stranger to producing talented pass-rushers and linebackers, and the latest in this long line of success is linebacker Yawin Smallwood.
He was one of the best linebackers in the Big East last season and totaled 120 tackles during his sophomore campaign.
Smallwood also totaled 15 tackles for loss and 3.5 sacks with two forced fumbles. Those are big-time numbers, and this guy has a legitimate shot to be an All-American in 2013.
He is, without question, the most talented player on the Connecticut roster.
Duke Blue Devils: WR Jamison Crowder
Duke had a solid season in 2012, with two wide receivers going over 1,000 yards on the year.
One of those receivers is back, as Jamison Crowder will return for his junior season.
As a sophomore last season, he caught 76 passes for 1,074 yards and eight touchdowns. Those were nearly identical numbers to fellow wide receiver Conner Vernon.
Vernon is now tying to make a name for himself at the next level, and Crowder will need to step in as the go-to guy for the Blue Devils.
Florida Gators: CB Loucheiz Purifoy
Florida has produced so many talented players on defense over the years that it is truly hard to keep track of all of them.
Another name who has emerged is cornerback Loucheiz Purifoy. The very gifted Gator is one of the best in the country at his position, and entering his junior season, he will be one of the best lock-down corners in the country.
He has plenty of size at 6'1", 189 pounds. That gives him the ability to cover anybody on the field.
His combination of skill and athleticism should make him a viable candidate for All-American status in 2013.
Florida State Seminoles: LB Christian Jones
Florida State has some very talented running backs, but the fact that Devonta Freeman and James Wilder Jr. could split carries might prevent either of them from being All-Americans.
The man at the top of the list for the Seminoles then is linebacker Christian Jones.
Jones could easily have entered the NFL draft in 2013, but decided to come back for his senior season.
He led the team last season with 95 tackles, and will likely be in that same position once again in 2013. Look for an All-American type season in 2013 from one of the best linebackers in all of college football.
Georgia Bulldogs: RB Todd Gurley
As a true freshman in 2012, Georgia running back Todd Gurley was one of the best in the country, totaling 1,385 yards and 17 touchdowns on 222 carries.
It was one of the most impressive seasons a freshman has ever had in the SEC, and similar success should allow Gurley to become an All-American as early as 2013.
While quarterback Aaron Murray is the most valuable player on the roster, it would be hard to imagine him being an All-American considering all of the other talented quarterbacks in the country.
Gurley, however, has a chance to be one of the top running backs in the country.
Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets: LB Jeremiah Attaochu
Georgia Tech will need to replace quarterback Tevin Washington and a few other talented players on offense.
However, the defense will be returning a few solid players, including linebacker Jeremiah Attaochu.
He posted 10 sacks a season ago from the linebacker position, and while he did not total a ton of tackles, there is no question that he has no problem getting to the quarterback.
It might be a bit of a rebuilding year for Georgia Tech in 2013, but Attaochu will certainly have his name heard plenty of times this coming season.
Houston Cougars: RB Charles Sims
Charles Sims is undoubtedly the best player on the Houston roster and he decided to come back for his senior season.
Even though he did not get a lot of catches last season, he proved that he is a threat, both on the ground and through the air.
Sims rushed for 851 yards and 11 touchdowns on 131 carries. He also caught 37 passes for 373 yards and three more touchdowns.
No question he will be the go-to guy for the Cougars in 2013 as they get set to kick off their inaugural season in the Big East.
Illinois Fighting Illini: LB Mason Monheim
Illinois always has some talented players on the defensive side of the ball, and the 2013 season should be no different.
One of the leading returning players is sophomore linebacker Mason Monheim. He starred as a true freshman in 2012.
He totaled 86 tackles last season and was one of the best defensive players on the team.
Monheim is very unlikely to become an All-American in 2013, but he is the most likely of anyone on Illinois.
Indiana Hoosiers: RB Stephen Houston
Indiana showed a little bit of life last season, winning four games on the year, and the Hoosiers might be even better in 2013.
One reason for that is running back Stephen Houston. He is the best player on a roster that is typically overmatched in the Big Ten.
Last season, Houston rushed for 749 yards with 12 touchdowns on 169 carries. He is one of the best running backs in the Big Ten and has a shot to reach All-American status with a big year in 2013.
Iowa Hawkeyes: LB Anthony Hitchens
Iowa was another Big Ten team that struggled to pick up wins last season, but that had nothing to do with their trio of talented linebackers.
The top player in that bunch—and the best returning player on the Iowa squad—is Anthony Hitchens.
Hitchens totaled 124 tackles a year ago, which was tops in the Big Ten.
Look for an even bigger season from Hitchens with a chance to be an All-American if the Hawkeyes can string together some wins in 2013.
Iowa State Cyclones: S Deon Broomfield
Deon Broomfield might not have been the biggest name on the Iowa State defense last season, but the talented defensive back had a solid junior season and should emerge as a leader in 2013.
He had only 45 tackles ;ast season, but he was a key factor against the passing game with two interceptions and a solid nine passes defensed.
With talented linebackers Jake Knott and A.J. Klein no longer in the fold, Broomfield has the best chance to become an All-American in 2013.
Kansas Jayhawks: RB James Sims
In a year that was filled with 11 losses, there was one bright spot on the season, and that was running back James Sims.
Sims did not play in the first three games last season, but over the final nine contests he rushed for 1,013 yards with nine touchdowns on 218 attempts.
He went over 100 yards in six-straight games during the middle of the season, and entering his senior season, he might have a chance to greatly increase those numbers in 2013.
All-American status is likely out of the question, however.
Kansas State Wildcats: WR Tyler Lockett
Collin Klein will no longer be the signal caller for Kansas State, and that might slightly help the receiving game.
One player who could benefit greatly from that is junior wide receiver Tyler Lockett.
He caught 44 passes a season ago for 687 yards and four touchdowns, but he also doubles as a punt and kick returner.
Those numbers could go up immensely if the Wildcats throw the ball around a little more, and he just might have an outside shot to reach All-American status.
Kentucky Wildcats: LB Avery Williamson
Avery Williamson was one of the bright spots on Kentucky last year and he returns for his senior season.
He finished the season with a team-leading 135 tackles and was, without question, the leader of a very poor defense.
In addition to leading the team in tackles, Williamson also had an interception, three passes defensed and three sacks.
With new head coach Mark Stoops in town, the defense could see some huge changes, but Williamson will still be the unquestioned leader once again.
Louisville Cardinals: QB Teddy Bridgewater
Louisville quarterback Teddy Bridgewater is one of the best quarterbacks in the country, and he enters his junior year with a shot to be in the Heisman conversation.
Bridgewater put up huge numbers last season by passing for 3,718 yards with 27 touchdowns and eight interceptions.
He also showed up in some of the biggest games of the season, including an outstanding performance in a 33-23 victory over Florida in the 2013 Sugar Bowl.
This guy has an excellent chance to be on one of the All-America teams next season.
LSU Tigers: DT Anthony Johnson
LSU lost a lot on defense, but one player that will be returning and stepping into a much larger role is defensive tackle Anthony Johnson.
He was very productive last season in a reserve role, even though he was one of the top defensive linemen on the team.
Look for the junior to put together his best season to date and possibly become a first-team All-SEC performer on a defense that desperately needs somebody to step up.
There are plenty of talented players at running back for LSU, but All-American status from one of them is highly unlikely with how many carries the group will be splitting.
Johnson has the best odds here.
Maryland Terrapins: WR Stefon Diggs
As a true freshman that was forced to play with five different quarterbacks last season, Maryland wide receiver Stefon Diggs had quite a year.
He caught 54 passes for 848 yards and six touchdowns and was a big-play threat on an offense that struggled to put points on the board.
If Maryland head coach Randy Edsall can find a way to keep his quarterbacks healthy, this guy could have a breakout season and quite possibly put together All-American numbers.
We all know he has the talent to do it.
Miami Hurricanes: RB Duke Johnson
Duke Johnson had a solid freshman season for Miami as he received the bulk of the carries at running back and was also one of the best kick returners in the country.
In 2013 with running back Mike James now having graduated, Johnson will get the bulk of the carries on offense.
Last season he had 947 yards and 10 touchdowns on 139 carries.
Look for those numbers to increase immensely this season as this guy could be an All-American as a kick returner or possibly a running back.
Michigan Wolverines: OT Taylor Lewan
It certainly came as a huge surprise to most when Michigan offensive tackle Taylor Lewan decided to return for his senior season instead of entering the NFL draft.
He was one of the best offensive lineman in the country a year ago, and not a lot is going to change in 2013.
Lewan proved himself even further when he held his own against Jadeveon Clowney in the Outback Bowl.
Look for an All-American season from Lewan, and if that happens, he will be a very high draft pick in 2014.
Michigan State Spartans: LB Denicos Allen
Even though Michigan State linebacker Denicos Allen did not have the junior season he was expecting to have in 2012, he could still come back strong in 2013 for the Spartans.
Last year, Allen totaled 79 tackles with three sacks, an interception and three passes defensed.
Look for those numbers to improve even more, as Allen has the speed and talent to cover almost anybody on the field from his linebacker position.
He will be one of the anchors on what should be another talented Spartans defense.
Minnesota Golden Gophers: DT Ra'Shede Hageman
Minnesota surprised some people last season by going 6-6 and qualifying for a bowl game.
A lot of that had to do with an improved defensive line that was led by tackle Ra'Shede Hageman.
Hageman is the most NFL-ready player on the roster and his six sacks last year from the defensive tackle position are something to take note of.He also totaled 7.5 tackles for loss.
Look for those numbers to improve in 2013, as the big man is a force in the middle of the defensive line.
Mississippi State Bulldogs: DE Preston Smith
Mississippi State defensive end Preston Smith had a very successful sophomore campaign from his defensive tackle position and he will likely improve entering his junior season.
Smith has the perfect size, and the 6'6", 245-pound end has no problem getting to the quarterback and wreaking havoc.
It was quite a successful 2012 season for the Bulldogs, and if they are going to duplicate the success of a year ago, they are going to need some more big games from Smith.
There is a very good chance that could happen.
Missouri Tigers: DE Kony Ealy
Missouri did not have a good initial season in the SEC, as they struggled through a 5-7 campaign last season.
One of the bright spots, though, was sophomore defensive end Kony Ealy. Ealy did not have mind-blowing numbers, but he did come up with 10 tackles for a loss and 3.5 sacks.
He has the potential to greatly improve those numbers next season and could turn into one of the best pass-rushers in the nation if he continues to develop.
While there is still along way to go, the potential is certainly there for Ealy.
Memphis Tigers: RB Brandon Hayes
Looking at the Memphis roster, it is hard to imagine any player becoming an All-American in 2013, particularly with the Tigers now joining the Big East.
Memphis only won four games a season ago, but one player who could make a splash in 2013 is running back Brandon Hayes.
As a junior in 2013, Hayes averaged 4.9 yards a carry while rushing for 576 yards and six touchdowns on 118 carries.
Look for him to be one of the few bright spots for the Tigers in 2013.
North Carolina Tar Heels: S Tre Boston
There are not many safeties in the county quite as talented as Tre Boston of North Carolina.
With the early departure of star running back Giovani Bernard to the NFL, Boston is now the most likely All-American on the roster.
He led the team with 86 tackles a season ago and also had four interceptions with six passes defensed.
The secondary remains intact for the Tar Heels and it should be the strength of the team in 2013.
North Carolina State: WR Quintin Payton
North Carolina State will bring back some talented receivers in 2013, and Quintin Payton is right at the top of that list.
He led the team in receiving a year ago with 51 receptions for 798 yards and two scores. He also averaged 15.6 yards per reception.
At 6'4", 210 pounds, Payton has the perfect size to be a threat down the field.
Look for that number to improve and for Payton to have an outside shot to earn All-America honors in 2013.
Nebraska Cornhuskers: QB Taylor Martinez
Nebraska quarterback Taylor Martinez has seemingly been in Lincoln for the better part of a decade now.
The 2013 season will be his senior campaign and he has the perfect combination of skills to put up All-American numbers this year.
Last season, Martinez passed for 2,871 yards with 23 touchdowns and 12 interceptions. He also rushed for 1,019 yards and 10 scores.
If he can improve those numbers—even just slightly—he will be in the All-America conversation.
Northwestern Wildcats: RB Venric Mark
Northwestern running back Venric Mark was one of the most underrated players in the country last season.
He rushed for 1,366 yards and 12 touchdowns on 226 carries, and he helped lead Northwestern to a 10-3 season.
If the Wildcats have the success in 2013 that they did last season, he will get a lot more recognition and will be in the conversation for All-America consideration.
Even though he is undersized at 5'8", 175 pounds, he is extremely quick with the ball in his hands.
Notre Dame Fighting Irish: DT Louis Nix
Notre Dame defensive tackle Louis Nix is one of the most intimidating players in college football, particularly with the massive facemask that he wears.
He decided to come back for his senior season at Notre Dame and he will be one of the best in the country at his position.
Nix was one of the main reasons why Notre Dame had all of the success it did last season, particularly against the run, as he was one of the best space eaters in the entire country.
All-American status in 2013 is very likely for this big man.
Ohio State Buckeyes: QB Braxton Miller
While linebacker Ryan Shazier is the best player on the Ohio State roster, he does not get nearly the recognition he deserves.
For that reason, quarterback Braxton Miller is the most likely player to become an All-American next season, even though it is likely that both players will make the cut.
Miller shined during his first season in the Urban Meyer offense, passing for 2,039 yards with 15 touchdowns and only six picks.
He also rushed for 1,271 yards and 13 touchdowns.
Miller will be in the Heisman conversation once again in 2013.
Oklahoma Sooners: C Gabe Ikard
Oklahoma lost a ton of talent on the offensive side of the ball from the 2012 squad, but one player coming back is center Gabe Ikard.
Ikard was the anchor along the offensive line a season ago, and he was a first-team All-Big 12 selection during his junior season.
The Sooners will not have nearly the weapons on offense that they did last season, but they will have a center with All-American talent that they can always rely on.
Look for this guy to be one of the best centers in the country in 2013.
Oklahoma State Cowboys: WR Josh Stewart
Oklahoma State wide receiver Josh Stewart had a huge 2012 season, finishing the year with an outstanding 101 receptions and 1,210 yards to go along with seven touchdowns.
No matter who is throwing him the ball next season, he is going to come up with his fair share of big plays and the Cowboys are going to have one of the best offenses in the nation.
While he might still be a bit of a long-shot to be an All-American, Stewart is one of the best playmakers in the Big 12.
Ole Miss Rebels: WR Donte Moncrief
Ole Miss hauled in quite a talented recruiting class this year, but it might be a year or two before those players are ready to achieve All-American status.
One player who to watch for this year, though, is Donte Moncrief. Moncrief caught 66 passes last season for 979 yards and 10 touchdowns.
He will be entering his junior season, and could quickly develop into one of the best receivers in the SEC.
If that happens, he will be in the All-American conversation.
Oregon Ducks: RB De'Anthony Thomas
There are plenty of explosive players in college football, but none more so than Oregon running back De'Anthony Thomas.
If the junior speedster does not get enough touches on offense to be an All-American at running back, he will almost certainly be in the conversation for kick returner.
Last season, Thomas carried the ball 92 times for 701 yards and 11 touchdowns. He also caught 45 passes for 445 yards and five more touchdowns.
Look for the Ducks to get him the ball as many times as they can in 2013, as he is as talented as any offensive player in the country.
Oregon State Beavers: DE Scott Crichton
Oregon State defensive end Scott Crichton is one of the most unheralded players in the country, and he is certainly the best shot that Oregon State has at an All-American in 2013.
In 2012, Crichton finished the season 17.5 tackles for loss to go along with nine sacks during his sophomore season.
He can get to the quarterback like few other players in the country can and should have an even better 2013 season.
Look for big things out of the Beavers defense once again.
Penn State Nittany Lions: WR Allen Robinson
Penn State surprised a lot of people with their success last season, and one of the reasons for that was the play of wide receiver Allen Robinson.
As a sophomore in 2012, he caught 77 passes for 1,018 yards and 11 touchdowns.
Even though quarterback Matt McGloin has moved on, Robinson should still be able to put up big numbers, no matter who wins the quarterback job.
Look for this guy to be one of the best wide receivers in the Big Ten—and possibly the entire country—this coming season.
Pittsburgh Panthers: RB Rushel Shell
Running back Rushel Shell was a huge get for Pittsburgh, and as a freshman in 2012, he served primarily as the backup to Ray Graham.
Now that Graham is gone, Shell is going to get the bulk of the carries.
As a true freshman last season, he carried the ball 141 times for 641 yards and four touchdowns.
Those numbers are likely to increase immensely in 2013, and he could be the next guy in a long line of talented Pittsburgh running backs.
Purdue Boilermakers: CB Ricardo Allen
Ricardo Allen has been a shut-down corner for Purdue over the past few seasons and entering his senior year in 2013, he will continue to be one of the best defensive backs in the Big Ten.
Last season, he had an interception (which he took to the house for a touchdown) and also came up with four passes defensed.
Look for teams to shy away from him this season, particularly with a new starter on the other side of the defense.
Expecting him to reach All-American status might be a stretching it a little bit, however.
Rutgers Scarlet Knights: WR Brandon Coleman
Rutgers might be hurt by the early departure of running back Jawan Jamison to the NFL next season, and the defense also lost a few talented players as well.
One guy that will coming back is wide receiver Brandon Coleman. He caught 43 passes for 718 yards and 10 touchdowns.
Those numbers are certain to go up in 2013 with the Scarlet Knights likely to be throwing the ball a little more, since they could also be playing from behind more often than 2012.
It still seems unlikely that Coleman would earn All-America honors in 2013.
SMU Mustangs: WR Jeremy Johnson
SMU will be playing its first season in the Big East in 2013.
As a junior last season, Johnson caught 67 passes for 679 yards and three touchdowns.
He has improved mightily during each of his three seasons at SMU, and he should be the go-to guy on offense next season.
There is a very slim shot that he could be an All-American in 2013, but Johnson has the best chance of anybody on the Mustangs roster.
South Carolina Gamecocks: DE Jadeveon Clowney
There is no question who the pick is at South Carolina.
Defensive end Jadeveon Clowney is the best player in college football, and one of the most intimidating forces that the game has seen in quite some time.
Clowney is almost a guarantee to be the top pick in the 2014 NFL draft, and he likely would have been the first player selected in 2013 as well.
Last year the 6'6", 256-pound defensive end finished the season with 23.5 tackles for loss, 13 sacks and three forced fumbles.
He will be one of the favorites for the 2013 Heisman Trophy.
South Florida Bulls: LB DeDe Lattimore
South Florida linebacker DeDe Lattimore will be entering his senior season and he has had a solid first three years in the program.
Look for him to emerge this season as a leader on the defensive side of the ball for South Florida.
He is one of the most talented linebackers in the Big East, but it does not seem likely that he has much of a chance to be an All-American in 2013 unless he does something that is completely unexpected.
Stanford Cardinal: DE Ben Gardner
Stanford lost a lot of talent on both sides of the ball, but one starter that will be returning is defensive end Ben Gardner.
He started all 14 games last season and finished the year with 7.5 sacks and 14.5 tackles for loss to go along with 49 total stops.
There is plenty of talent returning along the defensive line for the Cardinal, but Gardner might be the best of the bunch.
He might not be an All-American, but he could have a huge season for the Cardinal in 2013.
Syracuse Orange: RB Jerome Smith
Syracuse has a pair of talented running backs, and if either one got the bulk of the carries, they could be an all-ACC performer.
The man who received the bulk of the snaps last season was Jerome Smith, and that trend should continue in 2013.
Smith carried the ball 227 times for 1,171 yards and three touchdowns last year. He will be entering his senior season and fellow running back Prince-Tyson Gulley will give him a run for his money.
Look for a steady dose of the run from Syracuse this season with quarterback Ryan Nassib having moved on. Smith could get a lot of carries in 2013.
TCU Horned Frogs: Devonte Fields
TCU has a lot of young talent, particularly on defense, but the best of the bunch is sophomore defensive end Devonte Fields.
As a true freshman last year, Fields came up with 10 sacks and 18.5 tackles for loss.
He was one of the best defensive players in the Big 12, and he should be even better over the next few years.
It is certainly a strong possibility that he will emerge as an All-American as early as the 2013 season, especially if he can improve slightly on his numbers from a season ago.
Temple Owls: WR Jalen Fitzpatrick
Temple does not have a lot of talent on either side of the ball, but one player who could emerge is wide receiver Jalen Fitzpatrick.
He only caught 30 passes for 363 yards and two touchdowns a year ago, but with the top two running backs from last season now gone, Temple might be more inclined to throw the ball around a little bit.
The junior is very explosive with the ball in his hands, and he is a threat to score every time he touches the ball.
He is the closest thing Temple has to an All-American.
Tennessee Volunteers: OT Ja'Wuan James
Tennessee lost a ton of skill players, but the Vols will return both tackles along the offensive line next season.
Leading the way is senior Ja'Wuan James. If he has a good year, he could be a high draft pick in 2014.
The Vols will need a big year out of both offensive tackles in order for them to put together a winning season.
It all starts with James, who could be one of the best tackles in the SEC in 2013.
Texas Longhorns: DE Jackson Jeffcoat
Even though Texas defensive end Jackson Jeffcoat did not have the 2012 season that he was hoping for, that does not take away from the talent he has.
He missed the final seven games of the season with a torn pectoral muscle and has now returned for his senior season.
Last year, Jeffcoat still managed to pick up four sacks in six games.
If he can stay healthy, it is hard to imagine him not being one of the best pass-rushers in the country, and he should become an All-American this year.
There is too much talent to keep this guy down for too long.
Texas A&M Aggies: QB Johnny Manziel
Texas A&M quarterback Johnny Manziel burst onto the scene in 2012, winning the Heisman trophy as a redshirt freshman.
The SEC defenses were no match for Manziel as he finished the year with 3,706 yards passing and 26 touchdowns with only nine interceptions.
He also rushed for 1,410 yards and a stunning 21 touchdowns.
There is no question he is the best offensive player in the country, and if he can put together the numbers he did a season ago, there is no doubt that he will be in the Heisman trophy conversation once again and a sure-fire All-American.
Texas Tech Red Raiders: RB Kenny Williams
If Texas Tech passed the ball a little more often, sophomore running back Kenny Williams would have a better shot to become an All-American.
Last season, he only carried the ball 143 times but picked up 824 yards and five touchdowns.
Williams might get more carries now that Eric Stephens Jr. has graduated.
With quarterback Seth Doege also having graduated, it could be a great year for Williams.
Still, it does not seem likely that he will become an All-American overnight.
UCLA Bruins: QB Brett Hundley
UCLA quarterback Brett Hundley was another redshirt freshman who burst onto the scene in 2012.
While he will not have star running back Johnathan Franklin to hand the ball to anymore, Hundley is still one of the most talented players at his position in the country.
In 2012, Hundley passed for 3,740 yards with 29 touchdowns and 11 picks. He also rushed for 355 yards and nine touchdowns.
If he can improve slightly upon those numbers, there is a huge chance he could be an All-American in 2013.
USC Trojans: WR Marqise Lee
USC wide receiver Marqise Lee is—without question—the best player at his position in college football.
As long as he has somebody throwing him the ball, he will put up huge numbers once again next season.
In 2012, Lee finished the season with 118 receptions for 1,721 yards and 14 touchdowns.
He is as gifted as any player in the country and should be a very high selection when the 2014 NFL Draft rolls around.
Utah Utes: S Brian Blechen
Utah lost plenty of talent from its 2012 defense, but one player coming back is strong safety Brian Blechen.
In 2013, Blechen had 58 tackles, but he is not afraid to hit anybody and is one of those safeties that strikes fear into opposing players going over the middle.
He will be entering his senior season and while it is not likely that he will get enough recognition to earn All-American honors, he is still one of the most talented strong safeties in the Pac-12.
Vanderbilt Commodores: WR Jordan Matthews
Vanderbilt lost some talent on its offense. Among those gone are running back Zac Stacy and quarterback Jordan Rodgers.
Now the go-to guy will be wide receiver Jordan Matthews.
During the 2012 season, Matthews emerged as quite the playmaker, catching 94 passes for 1,323 yards and eight touchdowns.
There is no question that he was the biggest threat to catch the ball deep down the field for the Commodores in 2012.
Now, if he can just get enough looks, he will have a shot to be an All-American in 2013 during his senior season.
Virginia Cavaliers: CB Demetrious Nicholson
Virginia struggled last season on both sides of the ball, but one player who shined on defense was cornerback Demetrious Nicholson.
Nicholson proved to be one of the best cover corners in the ACC, as he broke up 15 passes, leading the team and finishing second in the conference.
He also finished second on the team in tackles with 56. He will only be a junior in 2013, but this might be his last season at the collegiate level because he appears ready for the next level.
Virginia Tech Hokies: WR Demetri Knowles
Demitri Knowles made his presence known as a true freshman in 2012, catching 19 passes for 240 yards and a touchdown for the Hokies.
Where he did a lot of his damage was as a kick returner. He is one of the fastest players in the conference and is a threat to score every time he touches the ball.
Look for him to be more of a factor as a wide receiver in 2012 as he continues to learn the wide receiver position.
Where he could become an All-American is as at kick returner. He was one of the best return men in the country last season and should be even better in 2013.
Wake Forest Demon Deacons: WR Michael Campanaro
Wake Forest wide receiver Michael Campanaro is the best player returning on offense and the most likely Demon Deacon to be an All-American.
Last year, he caught 79 passes for 763 yards and six touchdowns.
The 2013 season will be his senior campaign, and he will be looking to go out with a bang while helping to get Wake Forest back into the bowl picture.
If quarterback Tanner Price can get him the ball, this elusive wide receiver can do the rest.
Washington Huskies: TE Austin Seferian-Jenkins
Washington has a plethora of talented skill position players on offense, but one who is not talked about too much is tight end Austin Seferian-Jenkins.
Last season, Seferian-Jenkins was second on the team in receiving, finishing the year with 69 receptions and 852 yards to go along with a team-leading seven touchdowns.
The 6'6", 266-pound tight end has the skill to play at the next level.
With a ton of tight-end talent entering the 2013 NFL Draft, Serferian-Jenkins might just turn out to be the best tight end in the country this coming season.
Washington State Cougars: S Deone Bucannon
The entire 2012 season was a bit of a struggle for Washington State, as the Cougars struggled to a 3-9 finish under first-year head coach Mike Leach.
There were not many bright spots anywhere on the field, but one of the most talented players was strong safety Deone Bucannon.
Bucannon finished the year with 106 tackles and led the team in that category.
Now, if some players around him stepped up, the Huskies could become a factor in 2013.
West Virginia Mountaineers: RB Andrew Buie
With Dustin Garrison coming back from injury last season, sophomore Andrew Buie emerged as the go-to running back for the Mountaineers.
He will be a junior in 2013, and with the departure of wide receivers Tavon Austin and Stedman Bailey as well as quarterback Geno Smith, he will be the best player on offense.
In 2012, he rushed for 851 yards and seven touchdowns on 179 carries.
While he will still get competition from Garrison, Buie will likely be the go-to guy for the Mountaineers in 2013.
Wisconsin Badgers: RB James White
With Montee Ball now having moved on, running back James White will get the bulk of the carries for the Badgers.
Last season, in a backup role, he carried the ball 125 times for 806 yards and 12 touchdowns.
If his touches double, he has a legitimate shot to be an All-American.
Sophomore Melvin Gordon will likely get some more carries, but expect White to at least get 250 touches. If that happens he will be in the All-American conversation.