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Westsider Rider

Wednesday, August 24, 2005

Preseason Poll

Finally gotten some time so here's my preseason top 15 poll for College Football this year with some notes.

1. USC - What more is there to say, although I can't stand their fake ass fans which comprise of 99% of their fan base, what other school in the country could win 2 MNC's in a row and not sell out all their games? It's pitiful. Other than that, there is nothing I can say about the product on the field. Leinart is back with all the WR's at his disposal Jarrett, Smith and the addition of the #2 WR in the country Patrick Turner he will have plenty of weapons at his disposal and I have yet to talk about Reggie Bush, one of the biggest matchup problems in all of college football, he must be accounted for at all times. Lendale White is also back so the running game will not have a problem either. The main question is on Defense as they lose a lot on that side of the ball and we will see how much the exodus of assistants Orgeron and Chow will have an effect on the team.

2. Texas - I really don't know who else I could put at #2 so I guess I'll go with the Longhorns. They return a very dangerous Vince Young, who if he learned how to pass could be unbelievable, but I doubt that happened. Cedric Benson must be replaced but Romance Taylor will be there along with the countless studs from Texas they can keep in state and on their squad. Although they are Oklahoma's bitch I can see them actually pulling the game off this year considering all the questions that the Sooners have surrounding their team. They are confident after the Rose Bowl victory last year and we will see them try to make their statement on Sep 10th in the Horseshoe against those Buckeyes.

3. Virginia Tech - I think I'm higher on the Hokies than most but they have a great deal of talent on both sides of the ball and if Marcus Vick can finally get his shit together this team will be very tough to deal with. The defense is stacked and we know what Frank Beamer can do with a good defense and a Vick at QB.

4. LSU - Les Miles jumps into a great situation down in Baton Rouge, with talent all over the place, he just needs to find out who will be playing QB for him. Will it be Jamarcus Russell who played last year, or will Ryan Perrilloux the new Big Time QB entering this year take over the job. The talent on offense rivals that of USC and Michigan, and the D will be stacked as well.

5. Miami - The Defense is just so good, if we knew how Kyle Wright will perform as the starter I could bump them up a notch or two but we'll keep them at here for now. Devin Hester is an unbelievable returner and they can give him the ball some on offense as well to win a game or two that they shouldn't. Would love to see a race between Hester and Ginn, although I think Ginn wins in the straight away speed category.

6. Tennessee - Not as high on Tennessee as others but Ainge and Riggs are back to lead the O along with the D that was a very solid unit as well. If Fulmer could keep these kids on the field and out of jail it could be a very tough team to beat.

7. Michigan - My Wolverines fall into #7, lower than others but I do have my doubts on defense with all the problems in the secondary. I have no worries about an offense that returns 4 of 5 O Linemen along with Henne and Hart and Grady and Martin, not to mention the firepower at WR with Breaston, Avant, Manningham, Arrington, Bass and Tabb. However the defense with problems at S and CB do worry me, if we can get that figured out we will have a great shot at a 3rd straight trip to Pasadena.

8. Florida - Urban Meyer will add a win or two that Zook blew every year and he left the cupboard so packed that I believe Meyer has a chance at the NC this year. Although the schedule is extremely brutal, it can be done, Auburn did it last year and this Florida team has the horses to take it through the schedule.

9. Ohio State - The Buckeyes will have a great D as is the norm with Tressel at the helm. One of the best gamebreakers in the game in Ted Ginn is back and he didn't get nearly as many touches as he will this year. The problem is who will run the ball, can Maurice Wells step in and become this years Mike Hart or will Eric Haw or one of the other returners step up? Santonio Holmes will have to be accounted for as well so if Troy Smith can be the Troy Smith of the end of the regular season they can make a run as well. What if Zwick plays well in the opener will there be another QB controversy? Only Iowa has a better stable of LB's on their team and it will be tough to get points on them, we will see how they can stop Vince Young and the Longhorns on Sep 10th.

10. Iowa - The Hawkeyes will be an extremely tough test this year as Drew Tate is back along with the best LB corps in the country with Chad Greenway and Abdul Hodge. Considering they did what they did last year with a 5th string walk on RB, we'll see what they can do with a kid they actually recruited. Clinton Solomon and Ed Hinkel make a solid starting duo at WR and the schedule sets up pretty well for them as Michigan must make the trip to Kinnick this year.

11. Oklahoma - Although they do return the best freshman in the country in Adrian Peterson from last year there are a lot of question marks there as their starting WR's have graduated as has their 10 year veteran Jason White. Who will grab the starting QB job and how will the killing at the Orange Bowl affect their confidence? With Texas looking as strong as they do it will be a tough test in the Red River Shootout this year.

12. Louisville - Brian Brohm, Michael Bush and co head to the Big East as they look to be the favorites in their new conference. Most return from this team that should have beat Miami in the Orange Bowl and will play in the much weaker Big East. Look for them to go undefeated or at least lock up the BCS bid that goes to the Big East champion.

13. Texas A&M - My sleeper pick to run the table and make it to Pasadena, a team loaded on offense with Courtney Lewis at RB and Reggie McNeal, the best dual-threat QB in the country considering he can actually pass. The Defense is stacked as I believe I read that all starters are returning and a schedule that can be ran the whole way, the Aggies could be smelling Roses this year.

14. Florida St - The loss of Wyatt Sexton is huge as, although he wasn't great, he was experienced and we will see how Xavier Lee, or whoever wins the starting job deals with it when the Noles have to start the season with the Hurricanes on Labor Day.

15. Georgia - Has been consistently very good the past few years but just lose too much to contend for an NC this year. Gone from the O are David Greene, the all time winningest QB in SEC history along with his two starting WR's Fred Gibson and Reggie Brown. DJ Shockley finally gets his chance to show what he can do but he hasn't shown much in the times he's been able to play. The D loses studs David Pollack, Odell Thurman and Thomas Davis, which is too much to overcome this year.

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