Let's Hope It's Better This Year: 54 Predictions for the 2011-2012 CFB Season

Alex FergusonSenior Analyst IIJanuary 15, 2011

GLENDALE, AZ - JANUARY 10:  Quarterback Cameron Newton #2 of the Auburn Tigers celebrates the Tigers 22-19 victory against the Oregon Ducks in the Tostitos BCS National Championship Game at University of Phoenix Stadium on January 10, 2011 in Glendale, Arizona.  (Photo by Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images)
Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images

It's 2011, and we have one thing to say about our 2010 predictions: We blew it.


We said the Auburn Tigers would be good, but not quite Cam Newton good. We thought Texas and Alabama would play each other—again—for the National Championship. Dear God—Texas didn't even GET into a bowl and Alabama couldn't even spell B.C.S!

In our defense, we called the winners of the Big 12 North; that TCU would be the pick of the non-BCS schools; that Virginia Tech (ignore the bit about Miami) would be play for the ACC Title (forget about the bit where we said they'd lose); and we predicted Oregon and Oregon State would battle it out for the Pac-10 title because of a weakened USC.

Heck! We didn't even make the Illinois or Georgia games!

So now, here are your 2011 predictions, said through a crystal ball and written on a Friday night.

Some of these WILL come back to haunt me.

54. The University of Southern California will be the most dangerous definitely-not-going-bowling team in the nation. They may well win the Pac-12 (or whatever it's going to be called), but it won't matter. The sanctions are still the killer.

53. Despite the sanctions, the Trojans will still load up on signing day. As will Florida State, Ohio State, Texas, Alabama and Florida.

52. Speaking of Texas, they couldn't possibly be as bad as their 5-7 record last year, when they lost to wonderful schools like Iowa State and Baylor. In fact, we'll say they go 8-4 and to a Cotton Bowl. That will still displease Texas fans, who see the 'Horns lose to Oklahoma and Oklahoma State this year.

51. And while we're on Texas, TCU is going to be pretty damned amazing—and once again the top team in the Lone Star State. We can't believe they are going to go to the Big East in 2012. Non-BCS football will be all the poorer for it.

50. The University of Georgia's going to suffer after the loss of most of its best tacklers and its best wide receiver, AJ Green. Sorry guys. The pressure will continue on Mark Richt—despite the losses of his defensive unit—and his contract will not be renewed after another season living in the shadow of Florida (and South Carolina—and maybe Tennessee). We're sad to say it, because Mark Richt is one of the most decent people in college football, let alone the SEC.

49. On the other side of the SEC East, Will Muschamp's new reign will see not only the usual arrests that seems to follow the "undirty" program in Gainesville, but he'll still recruit brilliantly. Safety Will Hill's going to be a loss, but cornerback Janoris Jenkins' return is going to be a big, big plus. The offense is also going to vastly improve under the tutelage of Charlie Weis, which is going to please Gator-loving website EDSBS. In fact, we'd say that they are going to be favourites to win the SEC East.

48. Although that's being nice about the SEC East—which, let's face it, was just another ACC last year. We're calling for Florida to win the East, thanks to a win over South Carolina in Columbia. Stephen Garcia will blow the chance to win the final seconds.

47. Utah and Colorado are seriously going to struggle in the Pac-12, despite Utah's improved recruiting. If they win five games between them we'll be pleasantly surprised (we think the five games will probably be won by Utah!)

46. Speaking of struggle, expect Washington State to progress this season. They'll be a 2-9 in-conference team. We promise!

45. The Pac-12 title game's going to be awesome. Expect Oregon to feature.

44. Speaking of Oregon, Oregon's cheerleaders once again win the Unofficial VFA Cheerleaders National Title, beating out Florida, LSU, the USC Song Girls and Miami.

43. The Duck, however, doesn't win the Unofficial VFA Mascot of the Year. That's because he's suspended for three games after getting in a fight with the USC Song Girls (who, by the way, kick his butt!).

42. The Big Ten (or 12) lurches after an absolutely horrific bowl season to plead with college football to take some damned interest in them. Everyone giggles.

41. After some post-2011 research by the Big Ten into the world's stupidest divisional names—"Leaders" and "Legends"—the marketing guys who came up with the name are fired. Suggestions from the snarky SEC fans that the divisions should be named—in honor of their annual bowl failure—of "Sucks" and "Comedy" are ignored.

40. The VFA lobbies for "Schembechler" and "Hayes," in honor of the Big Ten's best coaches. The Big Ten ignores the idea, going for "Beaver" and "Horseshoe," which gains more laughter.

39. With his team decimated after off-the-field issues, Kirk Ferentz' Iowa team struggles to an 8-4 finish. No one else is arrested—but the Hawkeyes still win the Fulmer Cup. There are celebrations in the hay bales.

38. Speaking of celebrations, Paul Jones is the new quarterback at Penn State after Matt McGloin knocks out two students with his throws in the Blue/White Game. Jones doesn't manage to beat Alabama, but not after a 9-3 season, which includes two straight losses at Ohio State and Wisconsin that cost the team a spot in the inaugural Big Ten Championship Game. Still, the locals are happy.

37. Penn State's stud wide receiver Derek Moye and running back Silas Redd look even more like studs. Moye decides to stay in school for his senior year, setting off a huuuuuuuge party in State College. So does Joe Paterno. After a 9-3 season, no one argues. Why would you?

36. The Ohio State Buckeyes struggle after Terrelle Pryor, Boom Herron and three others' suspensions. They go 4-1 to start the year (thanks to a great schedule), losing to Miami in the Florida heat. And still won't give a damn about Michigan.

35. The biggest non-conference games to look out for: Alabama at Penn State; Ohio State at Miami; Boise State vs Georgia; Texas A&M vs Arkansas; Oklahoma at Florida State; Auburn at Clemson...

34...and the granddaddy of them all, LSU's game with Oregon, which will feature the No. 4 and No. 2 teams in the nation playing each other. And some really hot cheerleaders.

33. Speaking of rankings, the preseason Top 5 will be...

32. No. 1 Oklahoma: It's easy when Texas sucks, you've got Texas A&M at home and you're not playing Nebraska. The biggest test? On the road to Oklahoma State and FSU. And themselves.

31. No. 2 Oregon: Nicely reloading from 2011 National Championship Season. The kid James is good. And quick.

30. No. 3 Alabama: Trent Richardson's back. Be afraid of this defense. Saban's an excellent coach.

29. No. 4. Florida State: ACC Title favorites and a pretty darned good side. Excellent recruiting over the last two years. Oklahoma visit will be a highlight.

28. No. 5 LSU: We see two big losses looming for the Tigers: Alabama on the road and Oregon. Sorry Les—No SEC West title game for you!

27. Speaking of Les Miles, the Michigan Wolverines won't be utterly horrible this year. Brady Hoke leads the Wolverines to a respectable 7-5—which will include the as-per-usual loss to the point-to-prove-after-ringsgate-Buckeyes. Michigan's defense will still be ridiculed. But not as much as it was in 2010 under...

26. Greg Robinson, Michigan's fired defensive coordinator, who will still be looking for a job.

25. Rich Rodriguez won't. He'll become the offensive coordinator at a Big Ten school that needs an offensive coordinator. That'll be...er...all of them.

24. The Heisman Trophy will go to Andrew "It's not that. I'm just freaking amazing" Luck, beating out LaMichael "Too fast" James, Justin "Mr. Incredible" Blackmon.

23. Boise's Kellen Moore would be upset, but he's going as a top 5 NFL pick—if there is a league anymore!

22. Speaking of Blackmon, expect the Oklahoma State Cowboys to lose to Oklahoma on the road on the last game of the year in a match of the unbeatens. Which will suck for the Cowboys, because the Arizona win early in the year did them quite well comparatively speaking.

21. The Big 12 South will be won by Oklahoma. There's no Big XII Championship - as I've been told 400 times by the guys below who can't read someone else's damned opinion.

20. The University of Florida will win the VFA Unofficial Co-Eds Championship, closely beating out hotties from Georgia, Texas and UCLA. Oregon's co-eds are nowhere on the list. Word has it that they were out the back, making love, not war like true Northwestern hippies.

19. Mack Brown will retire his job at the University of Texas, which gets a round of applause in Austin, a moo from the cow, and some kick-ups from the lovely cheerleaders.

18. Auburn won't look too pretty after Cam Newton and Nick Fairley's departure. There's no truth to the rumor that Cam Newton's father's trying to sell his son back to the school for £400,000—a postgrad degree.

17. Speaking of Cam Newton: He'll go in the first round of the draft to the Tennessee Titans. They get the same coach as Tim Tebow got from the Broncos, and he becomes an NFL success. Tebow continues to own Denver, by the way.

16. Speaking of: Nick Fairley—He'll go in the top 5 and start as a rookie defensive end. He'll get his ass handed to him at times but will still talk more smack that Ochocinco and Suggs put together—and be one of the NFL's best rookies.

15. AJ Green's college career will bloom into NFL Stardom, as Green grabs the NFL Rookie of the Year prize. He promises not to sell the trophy for $1,000, for fear he'll get docked games and ruin a team's season.

14. Terrelle Pryor does promise to sell his Porsche 911, which he swears he got from a "wealthy buddy who had two of them." He uses the money to pay for a NFL quarterbacks coach to make sure he has a job after college. After all, Kirk Herbstreit, who might not have been able to beat Michigan, has one....

13. Kirk Herbstreit, Lee Corso and Chris Fowler host College Gameday from Cowboys Stadium in Arkansas. Lee Corso forgets who's playing.

12. While commentating, Brent Musberger sees the Oregon cheerleaders and says: "And suddenly 10,000 red-blooded males are signing up to the University of Oregon."

11. Famous Florida State alum and Brett Favre fan Jenn Sterger offers to act as a consultant to a university's recruiting prowess. Some 100 universities politely refuse— apart from Washington State, who could do with some help.

10. TCU will be country's best non-BCS team, running the table yet. again. And STILL they are ignored by the BCS for the National Title game. Barack Obama promises drastic action about the BCS and delivers nothing—again. Boise State also runs the table for good measure, just to make sure that season's going to definitely screw with the mind. TCU and Boise State play each other in a BCS Game. Suuure—because that makes a difference! Early prediction for 2012: TCU will win the Big East. And suck at basketball!

9. The Big East will be won by West Virginia, who will make the world's biggest change for the conference and actually be ranked! But really, everyone's talking about TCU.

8. The ACC is again going to be fun. With that said, we're going for a North Carolina (who'll win comfortably) vs. FSU (who'll squeeze out Clemson) ACC Title Game. UNC will win (note: prediction can be changed if the other half of the UNC team is suspended!)

7. The crappy-names conference will see Ohio State (thanks to big wins over Wisconsin and Penn State in the Horseshoe) and Nebraska (thanks to beating Michigan State) play for the inaugural Big Ten title. It'll be a classic, with OSU winning (and gaining revenge for the loss on November 8th).

6. The SEC East will go like this: 1) Florida 2) South Carolina 3) Tennessee 4) Georgia  5) Kentucky 6) Vanderbilt

5. The SEC West will go like this: 1) Alabama 2) LSU 3) Mississippi State 4) Arkansas 5) Auburn 6) Ole Miss (by damn!)

4. SEC Title Game: Alabama to boot Florida.

3. HOWEVER, this still doesn't get them into the National Title Game, as pre-ranked No. 1s Oklahoma and Oregon run the table. SEC fans start to rage, and use silly phrases like "The South Will Rise Again."

2. The Pac-12 title game will be played between Oregon and Arizona (the latter because the actual winner of the division -USC isn't eligible due to the stupidity of the NCAA). Oregon wins the game in a shoot-out. By 21.

1. ...and plays for the National Title Game, against the Oklahoma Sooners. They win, and the Duck, and Cheerleaders, are happy.

God, I'm exhausted after doing all of that!!


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