College Football Predictions: Top 10 Coaching Showdowns for 2011

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College Football Predictions: Top 10 Coaching Showdowns for 2011
Gregory Shamus/Getty Images

College football is all of seven months away from kicking off again, but that doesn't mean avid fans aren't already circling key dates on their calendars.

This is historically the time of year when the coaching carousel stops spinning and each team turns its focus to recruiting, whether they've got the same coach or a new leader in place. This year, there are a number of new guys breaking in to high profile jobs across the nation, and they'll have some big games ahead of them in the 2011 regular season that will serve as big barometers of their potential for success during their coaching stays.

Whether it's an established coach looking for redemption against a rival, or a new coach looking to make a strong impression on a big stage, there are plenty of juicy matchups to look forward to on the college schedule.

So I'll take you through 10 games that have very appealing pairings at the top in college football, with an eye on games that have big impact for each program involved. Consider this a good primer for some big games to look forward to in the 2011 college football season.

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