Rivals Rundown College Football Top 25 – Week 8

Wisconsin v Ohio StateAfter taking a week off and enjoying some music at Austin City Limits, we here at the Rundown have pieced ourselves back together and are ready to get back to some College Football!  The Top 6 teams have stayed almost untouched for the first six weeks of the season.  Now that both Alabama and Oregon have faced true tests in Texas A&M and Washington and passed, that leaves Louisville as the only untested top 6 team.  We will give Louisville some props for avoiding the trap game against Rutgers and while Rutgers is a good team, they are nowhere near A&M or Washington.  Other notes…  We are still of the opinion that LSU has the best shot of making it to a National Championship game other then Oregon or Alabama at this time, even though we have them ranked at 7.  With the showdown between Florida State and Clemson looming, the loser will fall somewhere between LSU and Miami, thus giving everyone a dilemma, does the winner deserve to be 1,2 or 3…  That is going to be a huge choice, I think at this time it depends on who the winner is and how they looked.  But, it will be tough!  It’s too bad Stanford choked on Utah,  it hurts the overall street cred of the Pac12 and Washington.  Until that we would say that the Winner of Stanford vs Oregon would peg their ticket if they were undefeated and so was Clemson or Florida State but now the Ducks are going to have to be really impressive, not to mention games left against Stanford and Oregon State. (Oregon State is a whole different blog).  Even as we sit back and look at our rankings, UCLA and Baylor might be the most underrated teams and we’re not sold on Texas Tech and Auburn but the deserve the rankings for now.  Ok, no more rambling, here is our most recent installment of the Rivals Rundown Top 25 Teams, Week 8 Edition!

1 Alabama Crimson Tide
2 Oregon Ducks
3 Clemson Tigers
4 Ohio State Buckeyes
5 Louisville Cardinals
6 Florida State Seminoles
7 LSU Tigers
8 Texas A&M Aggies
9 Baylor Bears
10 UCLA Bruins
11 Miami Hurricans
12 South Carolina Gamecocks
13 Stanford Cardinal
14 Missouri Tigers
15 Virginia Tech Hokies
16 Georgia Bulldogs
17 Washington Huskies
18 Fresno State Bulldogs
19 Texas Tech Red Raiders
20 Northern Ill Huskies
21 Michigan Wolverines
22 Nebraska Huskers
23 Michigan State Spartans
24 Auburn Tigers
25 Oklahoma Sooners

(Stats via Espn.com; Picture via sbnation.com)

Rivals Rundown Top 25 – Week 3

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Week 2 of the College Football Season is now in the books and with it a couple of our 25 teams, well for now.  It’s hard to imagine that one loss could end your season or at least your ranking in our Top 25 but in the cases of USC, Texas, and Cincinnati, that’s exactly what we think happened.  The worst of the three by far is USC, there is no way a team with that much talent should have such a bad offense, they could pathetic not being able to move the ball against what will prove to be a week Washington State team.  Anyways, here we go with our Week 3 Top 25 teams of College Football.  Come back later in the week when we will do our rewind and see how this Top 25 came together.

Current Rank Previous Week Team
1 1 Alabama Crimson Tide
2 2 Oregon Ducks
3 3 Clemson Tigers
4 4 Ohio State Buckeyes
5 5 Louisville Cardinals
6 6 Florida State Seminoles
7 7 Oklahoma State Cowboys
8 9 LSU Tigers
9 12 Georgia Bulldogs
10 11 Nebraska Cornhuskers
11 13 Stanford Cardinal
12 20 Michigan Wolverines
13 18 Texas A&M Aggies
14 29 Miami Hurricanes
15 16 Baylor Bears
16 17 Washington Huskies
17 26 UCLA Bruins
18 15 Oklahoma Sooners
19 19 Fresno State Bulldogs
20 14 Florida Gators
21 8 South Carolina
22 22 TCU Horned Frogs
23 23 Arizona State Sun Devils
24 30 Wisconsin Badgers
25 21 Northwestern
NEXT 5-    
26 27 Northern Ill Huskies
27 Unranked Ole Miss Rebels
28 Unranked Michigan State Spartans
29 Unranked BYU Cougars
30 Unranked Boise State Broncos

2013 @SECSportsUpdate Football Preseason Top 5* Rundown!

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2013 SEC Football Top 5* Teams Preview

So the saying goes that you save the best for last, so here we are on our last preview of the 2013 college football preseason and we find ourselves in the SouthEastern Conference where the BCS Trophy has now reigned for the past seven seasons.  It’s a streak that has been over-talked about but not and can’t be overstated.  In the modern era of college athletics it’s difficult to believe that one conference could completely dominate the landscape and it seems that 2013 will continue the streak and even more impressive, Alabama is on the verge of four titles in six years…yeah, let that soak in…Alabama with Nick Saban is setting the standard for modern day college football champions.  Sometimes it’s hard to recognize when we are living during the greatest era of something and right now, if Alabama wins it’s forth title in six season and if Saban gets to 100 wins before he gets to 20 losses, that is domination and that is something that others will have a hard time to replicate.  Now to clarify that last point, Saban is currently 68-13, over the last five years he is 66-6!  On that current pace he could hit 100 before 20 but that is still a couple of years away.  So here is our 2013 SEC Top5(maybe6 or7) Rundown:

 

1.  Alabama Crimson Tide 11-1 (West Champions) (Conference Champions)

So after that whole rant about how dominant the SEC has has been and how impressive Alabama’s streak has been, here’s the problem: last year Alabama schedule was less then impressive.  If you take out the three toughest games of the regular season, Michigan, LSU and Texas A&M, the combine record of the Crimson Tide’s opponents was 43-67, that’s nine teams…let that sink in for a moment.  This year the schedule doesn’t change much, they have an opening day game against Virginia Tech, then like last year they have A&M and LSU, if Bama survives those three games they will play in the SEC title game again with an appearance in the final BCS game on the line.  We like LSU to upset Alabama or a trap game on the road to Mississippi State as the only chances for a loss on the schedule.  If LSU had Alabama’s schedule we would be picking them to play for the National Championship but they don’t and so we are taking the Tide to appear once again an in the SEC TItle game but we aren’t ready yet to say they’ll play for a National Title, that prediction is still to come…

 

2.  Georgia Bulldogs 11-1 (East Champions)

Georgia will return with what we believe will be the best offense in the SEC, the question of if they can run the table or overcome Alabama in the title game will be if a young but talented defense can overcome an early and very tough schedule to help Georgia go into the Worlds Largest Cocktail party with only one loss.  If that happens, which we think it will, Georgia will return to the SEC Title game and this time they will be ready to dethrone Alabama.  Disclaimer: We will say this, we picked Alabama to win the conference again, but if this part of the prediction comes true and it’s Georgia vs Alabama we will take Georgia this time.  Which should mean that we should have Georgia as the number one team…but we can’t unseat Alabama, Georgia will have to do it.

 

3. South Carolina Gamecocks 10-2

This is going to be a repeat of last year for the Gamecocks, meaning if South Carolina can get past two teams that could also find themselves in this position in Georgia and Florida they could be undefeated going into a season finally against Clemson.  Last year, they fell pretty hard against Florida after coming off of a loss to LSU this year we like them against Florida but think Georgia will take a win away from the Gamecocks, also if Clemson can be in a position to play for a National Championship when they meet, we like Clemson.  The schedule is easy enough and with a little luck South Carolina could be playing in the SEC Title game but this year we think it’s Georgia’s game to play in.

 

4.  LSU Tigers 9-3

This is why the SEC is still the best conference is the nation, no other number four team in our conference Rundowns compare to the talent of LSU.  LSU was seconds and a couple of scores away from playing in the SEC title game and maybe a National Championship.  This year LSU has the toughest schedule of our top 4 teams in the SEC, they have a tough opening day road game against TCU, they also face Georgia, Florida, Alabama and Texas A&M.  This is the only reason we don’t have LSU higher, we like everything about the team and think that they have what it takes to win a SEC title but the offense and defense will have to improve with losing some key pieces thus leading us to think that LSU will be in the National Championship talk next year after these players have another year of experience under their belt.

 

5.  Texas A&M Aggies 9-3

Before all of the distractions that came in the offseason and before the half-game suspension imposed on Manziel we would’ve taken Texas A&M at 10-2 but now with all of that behind us we are looking at A&M not only to lose to Alabama and LSU but we think they might have a mental “loss” in there too and drop them to this position.  On the field with Manziel leading the offense, the Aggies will have a chance to win any game, other the Alabama (they want blood).  On the other side of the ball, the Aggies have some big holes to fill and that is not a good thing in the SEC.  Look for the Aggies to take a step back in their second year of SEC play but it will be a small step and if Manziel returns next year look for A&M to be in the hunt for a National Championship

 

6.  Florida Gators 9-3

We can’t say enough about the depth of the top 6 teams in the SEC, having Florida ranked as the sixth team in a conference is unreal.  This team at one point last year was thought as the number one team in the country.  For the 2013 campaign, like Texas A&M, (without the off field distractions) Florida will take a small step back as they gain some experience on both sides of the ball.  The defense in Florida was one of the best, top 10 in both points allowed and rushing yards allowed, that’s impressive when playing in the SEC.  This season the defense will need to catch up and while that’s occurring they will need to rely on the offense that ranked last year as on of the more average in the country.  All the top teams in the SEC can beat each other on any given Saturday, Florida in 2013 will be in it but we don’t see them playing for a conference title.

AP PRESEASON TOP 25 RELEASED

AP Top 25 Released with No Surprises
August 17, 2013

Today the AP Top 25 College Football poll was released with no surprises and very little to spark up new conversation.

1. Alabama
2012 Record: 13-1
Coaches Poll: 1
First Game: vs. Virginia Tech

2. Ohio State
2012 Record: 12-0
Coaches Poll: 2
First Game: Buffalo

3. Oregon
2012 Record: 12-1
Coaches Poll: 3
First Game: Nicholls State

4. Stanford
2012 Record: 12-2
Coaches Poll: 4
First Game: San Jose State

5. Georgia
2012 Record: 12-2
Coaches Poll: 5
First Game: at Clemson

6. South Carolina
2012 Record: 11-2
Coaches Poll: 7
First Game: North Carolina

7. Texas A&M
2012 Record: 11-2
Coaches Poll: 6
First Game: Rice

8. Clemson
2012 Record: 11-2
Coaches Poll: 8
First Game: Georgia

9. Louisville
2012 Record: 11-2
Coaches Poll: 9
First Game: Ohio

10. Florida
2012 Record: 11-2
Coaches Poll: 10
First Game: Toledo

11. Florida State
2012 Record: 12-2
Coaches Poll: 12
First Game: at Pittsburgh

12. LSU
2012 Record: 10-3
Coaches Poll: 13
First Game: vs. TCU

13. Oklahoma State
2012 Record: 8-5
Coaches Poll: 14
First Game: vs. Mississippi State

14. Notre Dame
2012 Record: 12-1
Coaches Poll: 11
First Game: Temple

15. Texas
2012 Record: 9-4
Coaches Poll: 15
First Game: New Mexico State

16. Oklahoma
2012 Record: 10-3
Coaches Poll: 16
First Game: Louisiana-Monroe

17. Michigan
2012 Record: 8-5
Coaches Poll: 17
First Game: Central Michigan

18. Nebraska
2012 Record: 10-4
Coaches Poll: 18
First Game: Wyoming

19. Boise State
2012 Record: 11-2
Coaches Poll: 19
First Game: at Washington

20. TCU
2012 Record: 7-6
Coaches Poll: 20
First Game: vs. LSU

21. UCLA
2012 Record: 9-5
Coaches Poll: 21
First Game: Nevada

22. Northwestern
2012 Record: 10-3
Coaches Poll: 22
First Game: at Cal

23. Wisconsin
2012 Record: 8-6
Coaches Poll: 23
First Game: UMass

24. USC
2012 Record: 7-6
Coaches Poll: 24
First Game: at Hawaii

25. Oregon State
2012 Record: 9-4
Coaches Poll: 25
First Game: Eastern Washington

[via http://www.cbssports.com]

BCS National Championship 2013-2014 Odds

ImageSo as you will learn the more I blog, I am regular watcher of The Daily Show with Jon Stewart and The Colbert Report…  There are a couple of notable things within both of these shows or regular “nicknames” they use for people within the media, my favorite being Stephen Colbert’s use of “Papa Bear” for Fox News host of The Factor with Bill O’Reilly.  So in that tradition, I will be using the name Godfather in reference for Phil Steele.  Incase you are unaware, Godfather, publishes a novel about pre-season college football every year around June, he also runs a website, blog and is active within social media.  Godfather is legit!  So to start our blog for the New Year here is a write up he did about the odds for winning the 2013-14 National Championship from Vegas, or as we will call it going forward, the Homeland (also an avid viewer of the show)-

Phil Steele

A couple of days ago, several casinos released their odds for the 2013-14 BCS National Championship. While PhilSteele.com does not affiliate itself with gambling, I do think it is interesting to see how Vegas is examining the upcoming season.

Here are the Top 10 Favorites to win the title this upcoming year courtesy of Bovada.

1. Alabama                  Odds: 4/1

Tough to go against a program that has won three out of the last four national championships including winning one this year with a team that many thought were a year away including its head coach Nick Saban. Next year’s team will return quarterback AJ McCarron, linebacker CJ Mosely and a boatload of other talented players. The schedule is manageable with two weeks to prepare for an early road trip to Texas A&M and they also have a home date against LSU. Also noteworthy is the fact that for a second straight year, the Crimson Tide avoid Florida, Georgia and South Carolina from the SEC East.

2. Ohio State               Odds: 8.5/1

At Bowling Green, Utah and Florida, Urban Meyer’s 2nd season was better than his first and the only thing that can top a 12-0 season, which the Buckeyes achieved in 2012 is to take home the crystal ball in 2013. Offensively, it starts with the return of quarterback Braxton Miller who figures to be one of the Heisman favorites and while they do lose their entire defensive line from last year, keep in mind Meyer’s top recruits last year were all on the DL. The schedule sets up nicely as the non-conference schedule is rather weak and in Big 10 play they get Wisconsin and Penn State at home while avoiding Nebraska and Michigan St. The biggest landmines are road trips to Northwestern and Michigan.

2. Oregon                    Odds: 8.5/1

The Ducks are off back-to-back BCS bowl wins and will return as many as 15 starters from last year’s 12-1 team that basically came one play away from playing in the national title game. The biggest return is head coach Chip Kelly who after yet another flirtation with the NFL looks to be here for the time being.  On offense quarterback Marcus Mariota and De’Anthony Thomas return and while the defense loses Michael Clay and Kiko Alonso, defensive coordinator Nick Aliotti has proven to be one of the more underrated coordinators in the country. The schedule features a road test against Stanford which will probably not only decide the Pac-12 North but possibly who goes to Pasadena to play an SEC team for the national title.

4. Texas A&M              Odds: 10/1

The Aggies had arguably one of their best seasons in school history on and off the field in 2012 with a move to the SEC, a Heisman trophy winner, an upset of #1 Alabama on the road and won 11 games capped off by a dominating Cotton Bowl performance over Oklahoma. Next year’s team naturally will see the return of quarterback Johnny Manziel but they will lose several key players including wide receiver Ryan Swope and defensive end Damontre Moore. The schedule is manageable as the two games are a September 14th home game vs Alabama and a November 23rd road game at LSU, which the Aggies have two weeks to prepare for.

5. LSU                         Odds: 12:1

The Las Vegas odds for the Tigers here at least for now have to be based on their recent success of being a consistent top 5 program as they certainly have had a tough couple of weeks starting with the bowl loss to Clemson then followed by a max exodus of key players declaring early for the NFL Draft. Next year will see the return of quarterback Zach Mettenberger who figures to be improved in his second year and he will have several talented running backs to hand off too and a great wide receiver in Odell Beckham. Defense could be the bigger issue with the loss of arguably their six best players and the schedule is no walk in the park as they start with basically a road trip to TCU in the opener and they also have SEC road games at Alabama and at Georgia.

Early Odds To Win
2013-14 BCS National Championship

Rk Team Odds Rk Team Odds
1 Alabama 4/1 23 TCU 66/1
2 Ohio St 8.5/1 23 Virginia Tech 66/1
2 Oregon 8.5/1 26 Boise St 75/1
4 Texas A&M 10/1 26 Michigan St 75/1
5 LSU 12/1 26 North Carolina 75/1
6 Clemson 16/1 26 Oregon St 75/1
6 Florida 16/1 30 Arizona 100/1
6 Florida St 16/1 30 Arkansas 100/1
9 Georgia 20/1 30 Kansas St 100/1
10 Louisville 25/1 30 Rutgers 100/1
10 Notre Dame 25/1 30 Tennessee 100/1
10 Oklahoma 25/1 30 Washington 100/1
13 Miami, Fl 28/1 36 BYU 150/1
13 South Carolina 28/1 36 Cincinnati 150/1
13 Stanford 28/1 36 Pittsburgh 150/1
16 Texas 30/1 36 West Virginia 150/1
17 Michigan 33/1 40 Auburn 200/1
17 Nebraska 33/1 40 Georgia Tech 200/1
19 USC 35/1 40 Iowa 200/1
20 Oklahoma St 40/1 43 Missouri 250/1
21 UCLA 50/1 44 Boston College 300/1
21 Wisconsin 50/1 44 California 300/1
23 Mississippi St 66/1 44 USF 300/1

I will be reviewing and releasing my own list in the coming weeks as an out of the gate before spring practices begin.