I know it's early, but I have College Football FEVER, so I will attempt to pick the winner of each conference, who will finish second, and I'll even give a darkhorse pick and tell you who will do the worst in the conference. This will be tough, but I want to see what everyone thinks. The Champion is who wins the title game (if there is one), and the Runner-Up is who loses the title game. So here we go.
Champion: Virginia Tech- Virginia Tech will be a great team this season, led by quarterback Sean Glennon and one of the best defenses in the nation.
Runner Up: Clemson- Clemson will have a great team this season and will still have their double-back threat, which was dreaded by many teams last season. They should be able to have a top ten defense and offense just like they did last season, but they're in the number two slot because of their inconsistancy.
Darkhorse: Boston College- Boston College will be led by Matt Ryan, one of the best quarterbacks in the nation. They are returning 18 starters and will be experienced on both sides of the ball.
Biggest Loser: Duke- One of the worst programs in college football will be at it again. I'm predicting that Duke won't win a game for the second straight season.
Champion: Louisville- I know that many want to put West Virginia here, but I think that Brian Brohm will be hungry for a Big East title in his senior season with the Cardinals. Rutgers will be right on their heels, but I still say that the Louisville-West Virginia game decides the Big East, and there's no reason to think that Louisville can't win that one, since almost the same teams will be playing from last season, when Louisville won by 10 points.
Runner Up: West Virginia- Once again, this is a major toss-up. I think that West Virginia will have trouble with Louisville, and that's what I am citing as the reason why they won't win the Big East.
Darkhorse: Cincinnati- Why not? You can't put Rutgers here, since they are no darkhorse, and Cincy did cause a lot of problems for some of the better teams last season, including Rutgers. Cincinnati will be a tough team, and no one should take them lightly.
Biggest Loser: Syracuse- Looks like Big Orange is heading into another disgraceful season. The Carrier Dome just isn't big enough for TWO good programs.
Champion: Michigan- This is a hard decision as well. Michigan will undoubtfully have the best team in the Big Ten, but Wisconsin is looking for a Big Ten title as well, and that game between the two could very well decide it. However, I see no reason why Michigan can't beat Wisconsin and win the Big Ten.
Runner Up: Wisconsin- There are three good picks here: Wisconsin, Ohio State, and Penn State. However, I'm picking Wisconsin because Penn State will have a tough time rebounding from the "mediocre" season last year (by their standards), and that Ohio State just lost too much fire power. Wisconsin will have a great team, and will follow up the 2006 Capital One Bowl Champion team with another great team in 2007.
Darkhorse: Iowa- Iowa was once a threat in the Big Ten every year, but seem to have fallen off the map slowly but surely in the past two seasons. I think that Iowa shows a lot of potential in taking on the great teams of this division, especially at home.
Biggest Loser: Indiana- Indiana will be playing with a lot of emotion after the death of IU Coach Hoeppner, but the Big Ten will be too tough for such a weak team. More than two wins in conference play can't be expected.
Champion: Oklahoma- Even with the loss of Adrian Peterson, Oklahoma's running game looks great. Oklahoma's main competition will be Red River Shootout rival Texas, but OU will probably be up to the task of taking the Big 12 Title from the Longhorns.
Runner Up: Nebraska- If I could put Texas here, I would, but Texas is in the same division as Oklahoma, which makes it impossible for them to finish second in the Big 12. Nebraska will be the best team in the Big 12 North Division, and should make it to the title game rather easily. However, I don't think that the Cornhuskers will be able to contend with their rival from the south.
Darkhorse: Texas A&M- I would really like to put Missouri here, because I think that they could be a force, but Texas A&M seems to be the best team in the Big 12 that won't be considered a threat for the title game, as they compete in a division with Texas and Oklahoma. If anyone will beat these two teams, it could be them.
Biggest Loser: Colorado- I didn't expect these guys to come out and only win two games last year, but I don't think that it will get much better this year, especially if they ever run into Montana State again. ; )
Champion: Southern Mississippi- Their only competition will be Houston, and that's who will most likely pair up in the C-USA title game. Damion Fletcher will be better than ever at runningback, and I actually have Southern Miss upseting Tennessee early in the season.
Runner Up: Houston- Houston will likely be a bowl team again this year, as they are one of the best teams in a weak conference, in an even weaker division.
Darkhorse: Rice- If there is such a thing as a Darkhorse in this kind of conference, I guess Rice fits the bill. They finished strong last season, but just a year before that they won only one game. Rice won't be looked at as a major threat this year, but look out for the Owls.
Biggest Loser: Tulane- You can imagine how hard this pick was, but I went with Tulane because they can't seem to put together a good team...ever. Tulane and Memphis were the bottom two in the conference last year, but I think that Memphis will improve at least a little bit. Tulane...I'm not so sure.
Champion: Central Michigan- This team is probably one of two good teams in the MAC. Dan LeFevour is a great quarterback, who led his team to a 10 win season last year, and had two one possesion losses against two good teams in Boston College and Kentucky.
Runner Up: Ohio- This is the same 1-2 we had last year in the MAC, but I look for things to stay consistant with this pretty horrific conference. Ohio seems to be one of the only choices to appear in the title game for the MAC East.
Darkhorse: Kent State- The Golden Flashes had a huge turn-around season last year, turning a 1-10 team from the previous season into a 6-6 team the next. The reason that I'm not picking Kent to go to the title game straight up is that they have to start the season off with back-to-back road games against Iowa State and Kentucky, and then have tons of away games in their conference schedule. In fact, they only have five home games this season.
Biggest Loser: Temple-Sorry Owls, but your first year in the MAC won't be a pleasant one. Although I think that Temple will pick up a few wins, they won't come close to making a splash.
Champion: TCU- TCU is actually the only Mountain West team at this point capable of getting into a BCS bowl. They have a lot of talent, and it may be likely that the Horned Frogs go undefeated in conference play, unless they were to lose against Utah or BYU.
Runner Up: BYU- They finished first in the conference last year, and have all of the talent to do it again, but I'm afraid that TCU has more. BYU should be a contender, but I see no more than 9 wins in this club this season, not that that's anything to scoff at.
Darkhorse: Utah- They have always hung around in this conference, but they couldn't get it done recently. However, with a good offense and not a bad D, Utah could suprise a lot of people by upending both TCU and BYU.
Biggest Loser: UNLV- Both the Runnin' Rebels and Colorado State had a disappointing season last year, but CSU looks to be improved this season, while UNLV probably won't get much done.
Champion: USC- Is this any surprise? Although I do think that the Trojans will pick up a couple of losses along the way, I don't think that they will be losing the Pac-10 Title. They have too much on both sides of the ball.
Runner Up: California- Cal has what it takes to win the Pac-10, but UCLA does as well. However, I'm taking Cal because they have an easier schedule than the Bruins.
Darkhorse: Arizona State- I think that the talent is there, and should be more noticeable under a new coaching staff. Besides, there aren't too many darkhorse chances in the Pac-10, as USC, California, and UCLA seem to be the favorites, and the most talented.
Biggest Loser: Washington- I know that lots of people want to say Stanford here, but have you seen Washington's schedule? It would be very tough for a five-star team to play that schedule, much less a mediocre one.
Champion: LSU- LSU will win the SEC because they have the most stifling defense in the nation, and one of the best offenses. Although they lost JaMarcus Russel to the NFL, their current quarterback, Matt Flynn, is the very guy that led LSU to that blowout upset of Miami in a bowl game a couple of years ago. A senior, he's no pushover.
Runner Up: Florida- Although I think that it's possible that Georgia could upend Florida with their solid defense, I don't really see a team in the SEC East better. Florida will have two choices at quarterback with scrambling sophmore Tim Tebow, and thier freshman 5-star QB.
Darkhorse: Kentucky- There are many teams in the SEC that are so used to beating up on the Wildcats, but this could be the season that it ends for some of these. Kentucky has the best passing offense in the SEC with star quarterback Andre Woodson and second team All SEC receiver Keenan Burton. Raphael Little is one of the best tailbacks in the SEC. This could be a special season for the Cats.
Biggest Loser: Mississippi State- There's really not much hope for the Bulldogs this season. MSU is the lone minnow in a sea of sharks.
Champion: Troy- This is a tough one to call, as the Sun Belt is the worst conference in America. However, I'm choosing Troy because they have a quarterback who was pretty reliable last season.
Runner Up: Middle Tennessee State- Second last season, and second this season. While Troy and MTSU are the best teams in this conference, they also have the toughest schedules. It will be interesting to see who comes out of their early season losses with more push.
Darkhorse: Louisiana Lafayette- The Ragin' Cajuns are as good a pick as any to become a darkhorse in this conference. I chose them because they have both a quarterback and runningback that can get you on the run, and combined for 16 rushing touchdowns last season.
Biggest Loser: Florida International- They didn't win one game last year in conference play. That's the worst you can get in a conference like this.
Champion: Hawaii- Colton Brennan and the easy schedule are the main reasons why I pick Hawaii to win the WAC.
Runner Up: Boise State- Just because they lost Zambrowski doesn't mean that Boise State doesn't stand a chance at the WAC title. I just think that Hawaii will be the better team overall.
Darkhorse: Nevada- Nevada could be a pretty decent team this year, and should make a bowl game.
Biggest Loser: Utah State- Utah State's 1-win season last year may not be much worse then they will finish this season.
Well, I guess that's it. That was hard to write, but I hope it's fun to read! Comment.