I wanted to wait until spring practices were virtually over before taking an early at the top 25 in college football for 2010. You know it's never to early too start talking football! Here's how I see the top 25 for 2010.
1. Alabama Crimson Tide
RB Mark Ingram is back and so is WR Julio Jones. Coach Nick Saban is one of the best in the business. This is the team to beat.
2. Ohio State Buckeyes
Is this year Jim Tressel and the Buckeyes live up to hype? They've underachieved before, but Terrelle Pryor wasn't the QB back then. He'll reach his potential this year.
3. Boise State Broncos
Anyone going to doubt Boise St. anymore? Kellen Moore is an outstanding quarterback. If they get by Oregon St. and Virginia Tech, Boise St. will get their shot at the national title.
4. Virginia Tech Hokies
The backfield is outstanding, and Bud Foster will produce a solid D despite some player losses there. If QB Tyrod Taylor plays well, they are a darkhorse for the national title.
5. Texas Longhorns
No more Colt McCoy at QB, but Garrett Gilbert looked good in the spring game and coach Mack Brown has recruited well.
6. Iowa Hawkeyes
The Hawkeyes will return one of the best defenses in the nation, and they get Ohio State at home. This is a very good team.
7. Oregon Ducks
The Ducks will have explosive offense, which includes versatile QB Jeremiah Masoli. (Author Note Masoli is suspended for the season, previous rank was 4). They are coming off a Rose Bowl appearance.
8. Florida Gators
No Tim Tebow, but Urban Meyer has decided to keep coaching. The SEC East is not overly challenging. That will help the Gators, who lost a number of players to the NFL.
9. Nebraska Cornhuskers
The last time we saw Nebraska, they were routing Arizona in Pacific Life Holiday Bowl 33-0. RB Roy Helu is an underrated RB. Bo Pelini is building something in Lincoln.
10. TCU Horned Frogs
I like QB Andy Dalton and head coach Gary Patterson, but I do think the loss of all-everything DE Jerry Hughes will hurt. TCU is very good, but won't go undefeated in the regular season. They'll lose to Oregon State, BYU, or Utah.
11. Wisconsin Badgers
The Badgers have the Big 10's best running back in John Clay. They also return QB Scott Tolzien and get Ohio State at home.
12. Oklahoma Sooners
Are the Sooners ready to return after their poor for them 8-5 season? I expect a big season from the returning RB Demarco Murray after a down 2009.
13. Southern California Trojans
A 9-4 season at USC is a virtual disaster, and Pete Carroll has left. There's still plenty of talent for Lane Kiffin, who has yet to prove himself as a head coach.
14. Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets
The Jackets lost their best RB, DE, and WR, but the QB Joshua Nesbitt is still there, and so is coach Paul Johnson. Al Groh has been added to coach the defense.
15. Miami Hurricanes
If Jacory Harris ever figures out how to complete some passes when his protection breaks down, Miami really could be scary. Brutal schedule includes non-conference games with Ohio State, Pittsburgh and South Florida.
16. North Carolina Tar Heels
The best defense in the ACC just needs an offense. If they get consistent play from QB T.J Yates or Bryn Renner they could really surprise.
17 . Florida State Seminoles
Bobby Bowden is gone, and Jimbo Fisher is now the head man. QB Christian Ponder is the ACC's best quarterback.
18. Georgia Bulldogs
Mark Richt kicked QB candidate Zach Mettenberger off the team, but the country's most talented WR in A.J. Green is back. Yes, I said ithe's that good. The offensive line will be a strength.
19. Arkansas Razorbacks
If Arkansas played in the SEC East, and not in the West with Alabama ,they could win a division title. QB Ryan Mallet returns and will guide one of the SEC's better offenses.
20. Louisiana State Tigers
Shouldn't LSU be better than this? There's talent, but LSU is falling behind in the competitive SEC. If they don't at least make a run for an SEC West title Les Miles will start feeling some heat.
21. Utah Utes
I never bet against Utah. They are the mid-major that started the BCS busting. Kyle Whittingham is one of the better coaches in the country.
22. Pittsburgh Panthers
The Panthers play a really rough schedule. Their non-conference opponents include Miami, Notre Dame, and Utah. Dion Lewis is best running back you've never heard of.
23. Oregon St. Beavers
WR James and RB Jacquizz Rodgers will be a nightmare for opposing teams to handle. The Beavers could be the reverse BCS busters as they can end TCU's or Boise St's dream of a national title when they play.
24. West Virginia Mountaineers
Any team with a player as dynamic as Noel Devine is dangerous. They have an early season test at LSU.
25. Penn State Nittany Lions
RB Evan Royster is back but QB Daryll Clark is gone. There are road games at Alabama, Iowa, and Ohio State too. If whoever plays QB develops quickly Penn State could be a top 15 team.
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