College Football Spring Preview: Who? Who? Who Will Be the 11 Best 11s in 2009?
There was once a dreadful television series starring Demond Wilson (Lamont) titled Baby, I'm Back. If not for the ghastly My Mother the Car, it would have to be considered the worst show in history.
Far be it from me to introduce such an insidious sugary mess of grateful myopic platitudes to so eloquent and skeptical a group of talents as those who inhabit Bleacher Report.
Note for historical reference—April can eat up the calendar of those in the numbers game. Fear not, we live to write again.
In this second installment of a preseason review of who will be minding the store when it comes to winning the BCS title this fall, we begin by scratching some of our January '09 choices and updating the prospects of others.
Reasons for movement can range from who was hurt less than others by early departures, to coaching changes, to a simple reflection of spring ball performance.
We will release the final installment in August; until then, the choices shall read as listed below.
THE 11 BEST 11s
11) Mississippi Rebels: Not as high as some folks. Houston Nutt has a tendency to flatten out.
10) Oregon Ducks: New blood brings new life into a plateaued program.
9) Iowa Hawkeyes: Running game in 2008 was based on blocking skill.
8) Southern California Trojans: Is it possible the Men of Troy lost the most talent?
7) Ohio State: Took some hits with exits, but look for them to win the Big Ten.
6) Pittsburgh Panthers: With luck, they could go undefeated.
5) Louisiana State Tigers: Time to prove Peach Bowl blowout was not a fluke.
4) Texas Longhorns: 48 years after Sexton (see above), Colt McCoy makes his mark.
3) Virginia Tech Hokies: For the moment Gobblers, but that moment could be fading.
2) Florida Gators: They will have the opportunity to repeat.
1) Oklahoma Sooners: Champions at the beginning of this decade and at the end.
On the Porch: Nebraska, Georgia Tech, Oklahoma State, Alabama, and N.C. State.
The 12 Bowls That Always Matter
12) Sun Bowl: Notre Dame vs. Arizona State—Charlie Weis or Dennis Erickson, who is more hated?
11) Holiday Bowl: California vs. Kansas—Programs that now maintain success.
10) Peach Bowl: N.C. State vs. Georgia—Who will Jim Donnan pull for?
9) Outback Bowl: Arkansas vs. Minnesota—Howdy Doody vs. Bobby Petrino's Legion of Doom.
8) Gator Bowl: Ga. Tech vs. Oklahoma State—Will final score will be 69-66?
7) Cotton Bowl: Alabama vs. Nebraska—Sounds like a national title preview of 2010.
6) Citrus Bowl: Mississippi vs. Penn State—Joe Paterno's group will be in for a shock.
5) Rose Bowl: Southern California vs. Ohio State—Tradition can be boring.
4) Orange Bowl: Virginia Tech vs. Pittsburgh—ACC and Big East Champs in a brawler.
3) Sugar Bowl: LSU vs. Oregon—Tigers will not be surprised here like Alabama.
2) Fiesta Bowl: Texas vs. Iowa—Someone has to pay for the Longhorns' return trip.
1) BCS Title: Oklahoma vs. Florida—Sooners will probably get them this time.
Clearly, an end result of the above indicates several situations will occur this college football season...
A) Sam Bradford will become the second two-time Heisman Trophy winner.
B) The Rose Bowl is stuck with a rematch in order to maintain conference tradition.
C) The SEC and Big 12 will be loaded once again.
D) Colt McCoy is just unlucky enough to play in this era.
E) Tom O'Brien's N.C. State Wolfpack could be the surprise team of the season.
Once again there will be an outcry for the dismantling of the BCS system in determining the best team in the country. There is no reason to involve the Bowls in the championship process; they should be left to the schools who wish to take trips as a reward for a good regular season. That would be a true return of tradition.
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