As the calendar flips over to August in just a few hours, it will mean that there is just about a month until the start of the 2011 college football season.
While Auburn won the national-championship game this past year, the Tigers have lost a chunk of their roster, and should not be huge factors in the race for the title this time around.
However, the team that they defeated on a last-second field goal in the BCS national championship game, Oregon, should be near the top of the rankings once the first polls are released.
With an offense like no other in the history of the game, the Ducks are loaded with talent that should be able to fire on all cylinders once the season begins.
The Ducks are going to fight until the finish once again this year to prove that 2010 was certainly no fluke.
In doing so, Oregon's squad will feature a number of highly sought-after recruits making their college debuts.
These four and five-star caliber athletes have skills that have never made their way to Eugene, as it was not until just a few years ago that Oregon became a national contender for good.
One could trace back the origin of Oregon's meteoric rise into a powerhouse to a number of places, but Nike co-founder Phil Knight's contributions to the program are, without a doubt, the leading cause. It was with Knight's money that the school was able to erect state-of-the-art facilities for the student athletes in Eugene and make the school just as, if not more, desirable to recruits than the goliaths of the college football world.
Now that the Ducks have cemented their place among the top programs in all of college football, they have been able to attract a number of the nation's top high-school prospects, but it was not long ago that just one could satisfy the program and send them in the right direction.
There have been a number of spectacular players that have made their way onto the gridiron of Autzen Stadium through the years, but only a select few have singlehandedly played a part in turning the program into what it is today.