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Westsider Rider

Thursday, June 29, 2006

Ciskie's Blogger Roundtable

World Cup fever delayed me in getting to the Roundtable questions asked from The Ciske Blog, and in the time I waited EDSBS has put one up as well, which I'll get to later. I also had a NBA Draft Recap post up but my internet at home went down so that'll probably be posted late tonight or tomorrow.

Which preseason college football magazine is your favorite?

I've actually never purchased a preseason college football magazine so I can't really answer it. I've always gotten my information from the internet and have never felt the need to go out and purchase any additional material. But all the talk about Phil Steele's magazine has me interested and I might go get it if I see it sometime soon.

What team is being supremely overrated in the preseason rankings?

I've got two teams for this, Ohio State and Clemson. Sure everyone expects me to say OSU as a Michigan fan but they lose so much on defense it's hard to see them competing for that National Title. They have the players on offense but as they say defense wins championships and I don't see that D there. Clemson is based on Ivan Maisel's early top 25 where he has the Tigers at 11. Sure they have James Davis and picked up C.J. Spiller but I don't see how losing Charlie Whitehurst moves them up. Clemson as they always seem to do will lose games they shouldn't and win a game they shouldn't and end up hovering around the 6-7 win mark. Also Oklahoma is getting a lot of hype, I do have them in my early top 5 but they do have question marks on the OL and we will have to wait and see if Rhett Bomar is ready for the big time.

Turn the tables. Who is underrated?

I've got Auburn as underrated coming into this year, I had them as my early preseason #1 and I'll stick with them. Sure the schedule is tough since they play in the SEC but they do get LSU, Florida and Georgia all at home this year. Add that with the return of Brandon Cox and Kenny Irons and I like them to win the National Championship this season.

Louisville was a team that a lot of people pegged as a darkhorse last year and they disappointed. However I think because of that season last year they are being underrated this year. Michael Bush and Brian Brohm are back to lead that offense and the schedule also looks favorable as Miami and West Virginia are home games.

Which conference will be the best in 2006?

I like the SEC followed by the Big 10 to be the best in 06. The top of the league will be strong as always with Auburn, LSU, Florida and Georgia competing for the conference title. South Carolina under Spurrier will be a tough team to face. Tennessee should be improved from their 5-6 record a season ago as should Arkansas. Alabama will probably have some drop off but will still be a bowl team.

Everyone has Ohio State up in their top 5 at least, and Iowa will be a very good team and Michigan should rebound after last season. Penn State will be solid, just depends on how Anthony Morelli handles the starting job and Michigan State returns Drew Stanton which will make them a threat. Can't forget Wisconsin coming off a 10 win season but under a new coaching staff and Minnesota would be ranked higher if Gary Russell didn't flunk out of school.

Which "non-BCS" conference will be the best in 2006?

I'll watch non-BCS games late on Saturday when there's nothing else going on but I don't follow them closely enough to make these picks, unless a player on one of these teams is on my college fantasy league. So I'll go with the safe pick and choose the Mountain West with TCU and Utah leading the charge. Utah could score a big upset for the conference early when they come to the Rose Bowl and take on UCLA while TCU can pick up a couple of wins over Big XII teams as they open at Baylor and two weeks later welcome Texas Tech to town.

Which non-BCS conference team will have the best season?

I like UTEP as the best non-BCS conference team this year. Mike Price has done a great job rebuilding in El Paso and with Carson Palmer's brother Jordan at the helm along with a big time WR in Johnnie Lee Higgins I expect the Miners to get a 10 win season this year. Week 2 they host Texas Tech but aside from that the schedule doesn't look too difficult and they should win Conference USA this year.

Let's get your first read on this one...who will win the H*i*m*n? Oh, by the way, players whose last names begin with the letter "Q" are ineligible.

There are a couple of names that are being mentioned aside from Mr. Q and I think one of them is a favorite, that being Adrian Peterson of Oklahoma. We all saw what he could do his freshman year and big things were expected of him last year as well. But injuries derailed him as well as his OL so we will see if he can get back to form.

If Auburn does as I predict and get to the National Championship then there would be some love shown for Brandon Cox and Kenny Irons so it wouldn't surprise me if Irons had a big year and made a run for the trophy.

Michael Bush has been talked about by some but I don't see it unless Louisville makes a run at an undefeated season and even if then Brian Brohm would get a lot of credit for it taking away votes. Marshawn Lynch could get some consideration if Cal is able to beat USC and have another big season but his problem will be the lack of exposure being on the West Coast as well as having to split carries with Justin Forsett.


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