For the second year, I will be participating in the CollegeRivals.org Top 25 poll. For those of you unfamiliar with the poll, it is voted on by a number of site owners and writers such as myself who run individial team websites. The voters are almost like a who’s who of independant site owners as there are some really great sites represented. Anyway, here is my Preseason Top 25.
Preseason Top 25
First off let me say I don’t like preseason polls. Why? Because most writers, even professioanl writters do not know enough about how every team is progressing in camp to really give an accurate representation of rankings. So for me, my preseason poll is really a starting point with the weekly polls getting me closer and closer to really accurate rankings.
And now some comments. I put Ohio State first almost by default and I did not want to be labeled a homer for putting the Irish first. I’m well aware of Ohio State’s defensive departures, but if there’s one thing Tressel has shown is that defense is not a problem with his teams. I think Ohio State finds its answers on defense this summer to go along with what could be a really dynamic offense this year in Columbus. If they get past Texas in Austin, they’ll be playing in Tempe.
Notre Dame is my #2 team because I think the defense is going to be a lot better than most. I have a lot of faith in Rick Minter and think that ND’s veteran defense will be greatly improved.
In 3rd I have Auburn. I really like the style of football Auburn has rub under Tommy Tuberville. Tough defense, strong running game and think this years team will be really good. Brandon Cox and Kenny Irons should lead a good offense and if they beat LSU early on, they’ll be at least in the SEC Title game.
Rounding out the Top 5 are Texas and then USC. With both having questions at quarterback after losing Vince Yooung and Matt Leinart, I don’t think either is really a Top 3 team yet. By seasons end, both of these teams will be more than capable of playing for the title, but for now, I have them 4th and 5th.
Some other highlights. A lot of people have West Virginia a lot higher, but honestly, I just don’t see them as an elite team. With the Big East as weak as it is, they are going to need to win every game by at least two touchdowns to convince me they are a real title contender. I realize they had some freshman stars who will be a year wiser now, but they won’t sneak up on anyone and everyone in the Big East will have their eyes set on upsetting the Mountaineers.
I have Virginia Tech a lot higher than most people. Like Auburn, I just really like the style of football Frank Beamer has the Hookies playing every year with great special teams and great defense.
Alabama should be included in my poll. That was an oversight by me. They should replace Arkansas in my poll, but I realized it too late after I submitted the poll. Their offense might still be sluggish, but they are Top 25 worthy.
Your comments are definitely welcome. I’ll be posting my Top 25 weekly on the blog as well.