College Football Preseason Predictions: Top 10 Most Frustrating Programs
Every team in college football is frustrating at some point every season, with some more than others. Both winning and losing teams can be put into this category.
Frustration can be positive in a sense that it brings more intensity to the game, and negative in that teams continue unwanted streaks.
Here is a list of the top-10 most frustrating teams in FBS college football, stretching from the year 2000-present, in no particular order.
Sanction frustrations aside, the Trojans make this list for their ability to be upset in at least one game each season recently. The included losses are games that the Trojans entered as clear favorites to win, but were beaten by a "lesser" team.
2006 - Oregon State, UCLA
2007 - Stanford, Oregon
2008 - Oregon State
2009 - Washington, Oregon, Stanford
The Trojans seem to lose focus on easier games as they can beat a top-10 team one week, and lose to an unranked team the next.
Recent years haven't been bad for the Wisconsin Badgers. In fact, they have gone bowling for the past eight years straight.
There are two related frustrating things surrounding the Badgers—the 2000s haven't brought a BCS Bowl, and they can't seem to jump out of Ohio State's shadow in the Big Ten.
There is no doubt that Ohio State has dominated the Big Ten Conference for most of the past decade, and the Badgers have been on their tail for most of the ride. They always seem to fall just short of the Buckeyes (some years closer than others) in the conference rankings.
South Carolina Gamecocks
The South Carolina Gamecocks have a lot of hype heading into 2010 and the only thing standing in their way is, well, their conference. The SEC.
The Gamecocks have the ability to take on big games, but in the SEC, almost every game is a big game because you are taking on numerous ranked opponents. They have kept up with the best (literally No. 1, 2, etc.) in games, but end up falling short in the end.
Notre Dame Fighting Irish
Notre Dame is trying to come back to be one of the elite again.
The frustrating aspect about the Fighting Irish is the fact that they are all passing and no rushing.
Granted, Notre Dame is known for having great quarterbacks, having a superb passing game, and it's great that their QB's can throw for over 3,000 yards, but without a running attack, the team cannot be the superpower they seek to be.
Let's compare them to last season's top ranked team, Alabama in rushing. The Irish had 1,539 yards rushing, and Alabama had 3,011 rushing yards.
To put things in perspective, let's minus out Mark Ingram's yards (1,658) from Alabama's total.
We now have 1,353 yards without the Heisman Trophy winner, leaving the Fighting Irish with only 186 yards more rushing yards on 70 more carries than the Crimson Tide.
Now this isn't just for the 2009 season— the Irish haven't had a 2,000 yard rushing season since before the year 2000.
California Golden Bears
The Golden Bears always seem to start the season off with a bang, either entering in the top-25 preseason rankings or entering the top-25 in the first couple of weeks into the season.
Cal usually starts its season strong, winning all or most of its games in the first half of the season. Once the Golden Bears hit about midway through the season, they seem to lose their momentum.
This unexplainable recurring feature for the team seems to always happen when they enter into the top 15, in which they then start losing key games.
While the Golden Bears have still pulled in winning records, the past three years have held to true to this phenomenon of being ranked early, only to exit the season unranked.
Head coach Bob Stoops has undoubtedly brought the Sooner program to greatness. He brought in a National Championship in the 2000 Sugar Bowl and a win in the 2002 Rose Bowl, but has not won a BCS game since.
The Sooners are 0-5 in BCS games since 2002, including a loss in the 2008 BCS National Championship game to Florida.
Oklahoma has a record of 110-23 from 2000-present, which is more than impressive. But all the great seasons are shadowed by their BCS record of 2-5 in the last decade, making a more than frustrating situation for the Sooner fans.
Ohio State Buckeyes
Ohio State is one of many powerhouse schools in the country, there is no doubt about it. The Buckeyes bring in huge talent year-in and year-out, having great success.
Unless they play the SEC in bowl games, in which they are 0-9.
The endless debate between Buckeye fans and the ever growing fans of the SEC in general, is still raging, with the SEC racking up an impressive resume.
This is more than frustrating for the Buckeye Nation, as there is nothing more than they hate than being heckled by the rightful fans of the SEC, for now anyways.
Arizona State Sun Devils
Head coach Dennis Erickson has been a hired mercenary his whole college football career. Schools hire him to turn programs around, which he seems to do with ease.
Erickson did just that in 2007, his first year with Arizona State, bringing in a 10-2 season and a share of the Pac-10 title. After being ranked as low as fourth in the AP polls in 2007, hopes were high for the years to come.
2008 brought in a 5-7 record, followed by a 4-8 in 2009. The lack of a healthy offensive line and talent at quarterback has overshadowed their top-notch defense, leaving fans befuddled.
Erickson promises improvements on offense for 2010, but the crowd in Tempe has grown frustrated with his false hope in the past two seasons.
"The U" has been trying to return to their glory days of the late 1980s and early 1990s for a while now without much success. Yes, they won a National Championship in 2001, but the lack of intensity from the players and coaches is frustrating, and greatly missed.
Granted, the 'Canes are the one team who have to keep a cap on their emotions because as everyone knows, the taunting and celebration rules were established because of their glory days.
It seems that every year in the 2000s, there is always hype surrounding the Hurricanes and that they are returning to their intense, dominating, never-take-a-loss days, but always fall just short with up and down seasons (2001 exception).
The Big East Conference
Pick a team, any team. Any questions?