Spring Top 25: Gators No. 1, Tech 13, Dawgs 14



We did our RE (Ridiculously Early) Top 25 back in January, just hours after Florida had won the BCS national championship. Now we’re done with spring practice and June will be here before we know it. So let’s do our Spring Top 25, which should give us enough to argue about between now and two-a-days in August.

Last season’s record and the previously rank in our RE Top 25 are in parentheses. So who did I leave out that belongs on this list?

Have a good weekend. See you Monday.


1—Florida (13-1, 1): Tim Tebow is back. The entire defense is back. There are no apparent weaknesses on this team. The only real concern is an Oct. 10 trip to LSU.

2—Texas (12-1, 2): Colt McCoy and the Longhorns will be motivated after coming up one-point short of a shot at the national championship last season.  They meet Oklahoma in Dallas On Oct. 17 and travel to Oklahoma State on Oct. 31.

3—Oklahoma (12-2, 5): QB Sam Bradford, the Heisman Trophy winner, came back to school for another shot at the national championship.

4—Alabama (12-2, 4): Crimson Tide has to rebuild OL but defense should carry this team a long way.

5—Southern California (12-1, 3): QB Mark Sanchez left early and nine starters are gone on defense. So what? Trojans reload and win the Pac-10 again.

6—Virginia Tech (10-4, 8): The defending ACC champions came out of spring feeling good about defense, QB Tyrod Taylor.

7—Oklahoma State (9-4, 7): Georgia fans need to remember: QB Zac Robinson, RB Kendall Hunter, WR Dez Bryant. The Cowboys are very good.

8—Ohio State (10-3, 9):  RB Beanie Wells left but QB Terrelle Pryor returns with eight starters on defense.

9—LSU (8-5, 6): Tigers bounce back with John Chavis as new defensive coordinator and Jordan Jefferson at QB.

10—Ole Miss (9-4, 16): Not sure if I’m totally on the Ole Miss bandwagon yet because LT Michael Oher and DT Peria Jerry are gone. Rebels do have a very good QB in Jevan Snead and a good schedule.

11—Oregon (10-3, 18): Mike Bellotti stepped down as head coach but Chip Kelly was the genius behind that offense. Will challenge Southern Cal in Pac-10.

12—Penn State (11-2, 21): People are telling me that Joe Pa might win the Big Ten despite losing 14 starters. We’ll see.

13—Georgia Tech (9-4, 13): There are some big holes to fill on the defensive line, but Paul Johnson’s offense will be even better in year two.

14—Georgia (10-3, 15): Still concerned about the defense and the running back position. The Sept. 5 trip to Oklahoma State is scary.

15—Florida State (9-4, 12): If the Seminoles can find a couple of receivers they will win the ACC Atlantic.

16—North Carolina (8-5, 14): Tar Heels also need some wide receivers but the defense (19 INT last season) will be very good.

17—TCU (11-2, 17): The Horned Frogs lost seven starters from the nation’s No. 2 defense but these guys are always good under Gary Patterson.

18—Boise State (12-1, 24): Broncos return QB Kellen Moore but have a tough opener with Oregon.

19—Utah (13-0, 19): QB Brian Johnson is gone but nine starters on defense return.

20—Texas Tech (11-2, 20): QB Graham Harrell is gone but Mike Leach always finds another quarterback to plug into his offense.

21—Cincinnati (11-3, NR): Only one starter returns on defense but QB Tony Pike is back on offense. Bearcats are still good enough to repeat as Big East champs.

22—East Carolina (9-5, NR): Sixteen starters, including QB Patrick Pinkney, return from the C-USA champs.

23—California (9-4, 22): RB Jahvid Best is the nation’s leading returning rusher. Seven starters are back on defense.

24—Notre Dame (7-6, NR): I’m not convinced the Irish are that good but the schedule, other than Southern Cal on Oct. 17, is very manageable.

25—Kansas (8-5, NR): With quarterback Todd Reesing coming back, the Jayhawks will challenge Nebraska for the Big 12 North.



473 comments Add your comment


May 17th, 2009
8:07 pm

An interesting point for UGA upcoming season(s), based on the depth charts, UGA will only have one starting senior this upcoming season in Joe Cox. The O-line will be comprised of Jrs and sophs which all have significant experience. UGA offensive depth chart (going 4 deep) only shows four seniors on the team this year. However, the defense line is loaded with seniors in Kade Weston, Geno Adkins and Jeff Owens in the Middle. The D-ends, LB’s and DB’s have two or three Seniors. The defense should be very good this year and the offense should be good based on experience on the O-line. This season and the next several should prove to be very exciting for Dawg fans.

SEC Rules

May 17th, 2009
8:42 pm

Bo Williams,

Wake won a squeaker at home over Ole Miss 30-28 in the second game of the season. They won on the final drive aided by 2 very questionable pass interference calls.

I looked at the schedules. It seems to me that out of the 6 games the sec won over the acc 5 of the 6 were blowout wins of 23 or more pts. Total buttkickings by 23, 24, 30, 34, and 35 pts. The only close game was Vandy over BC 16-14

Of the 6 acc wins over the sec 3 of the acc’s wins were squeakers won by 2, 3, and 3 pts, 2 were decent margin wins by Wake over Vandy by 13 and Clemson over S. Carolina by 17, and one was a blowout Tech over hapless Miss. State 38-7. Notice that your one blowout win was over our worst team.

SEC Rules

May 17th, 2009
8:48 pm

Bo Williams,

Yup. The final tally is in. Although the SEC and ACC tied 6-6 in interconference play 5 of the 6 sec wins came by blowout proportion while 3 of the ACC’s 6 wins were squeakers.

The final scoring tally. SEC outscored the ACC 318-205, a point differential of 113 pts.

nerds helper

May 17th, 2009
9:47 pm

just look up the conference rankings last year.. you will find the ACC ranked above the SEC… those SEC blowouts over ACC teams were all by Florida or Alabama… the rest of the SEC was a JOKE.. i mean come on.. Wake over Vandy? Duke over Vandy? crappy Clemson over S. Carolina? If Tech had UGA’s schedule they would have had a better record than UGA did and if UGA had Tech’s schedule they would have had a worse record… hell if you want to go by point differential UGA probably had a losing record last year


May 17th, 2009
9:51 pm

8-4 would be optimistic for UGA this year. I see more like 7-5. We don’t have the talent or experience to outscore the points our defense will surrender like we did last year. Joe Cox will be capable, but not a star and Murray will be worked in; King, Samuel, Jackson & Thomas will run by committee and be above average; the OL will be better, but not great. All in all we WILL be rebuilding for 2010 when Murray steps in and targets Green, Charles and Brown. By then Samuel will be older, stronger and probably the main RB. Hopefully Soft Willie will be promoted to Associate Athletic Director in charge of…….Cheese Doodles, who cares, just promote him and let’s get a defensive coodinator in there who can coach these guys up!

BTW for those who say that Oklahoma St simply lacks the defensive strength to win against UGA…please check UGA’s inept defense. No way we outscore them, no matter what kind of defense they have.

SEC Rules

May 17th, 2009
11:55 pm

Nerds helper,

Looks like you are wrong once again in stating all of those blowouts were by Florida and Bama. 2 of these 5 blowouts were by South Carolina over NC State 34-0 and LSU over Tech 38-3. I could be wrong but I believe South Carolina finished last in the east division and LSU i believe was 4th or 5th in the west. LSU only won 3 conference games the entire year.

You’re bragging over the 2 wins over Vandy which has traditionally been the worst team in the sec?

Secondly, your assertion that if Tech had UGA’s schedule they would have had a better record is absurd. UGA had Bama and UF as 2 of their losses and the 3rd of course was to Tech. Every team in UGA’s division went to a bowl except South Carolina which went 1-1 against the ACC.

Thirdly, your idea that UGA probably got outscored overall is absolutely ludicrous. They lost by 3 to Tech. Bama beat them by 11. Only Florida beat them by an embarrassing score of 49-10. That’s 3 games lost by a total of 53 pts. I haven’t looked up UGAs 10 wins but I guarantee that their collective 10 wins are by a far wider margin than greater than 53 pts. I’m not going to look up the dog’s point differential though because I’m certain it would just make you look like an even bigger idiot than you already look.

Last of all your opinion that Tech would have done better than UGA if they had UGA s schedule and that UGA would have done worst with Tech’s schedule is an opinion that is not based upon facts. My numbers are based upon cold, hard FACTS. The only common opponent that they had to my knowledge was LSU. According to reality UGA whipped LSU by 14 in Baton Rouge while Tech got thrashed in their own backyard in Atlanta 38-3. UGA’s only 2 other losses were to Florida and Bama which is quite respectable as opposed to losing to whatever 7-5 teams Tech lost to. Man are you stupid. For the record I’m not a dog fan. I’m an Alabama fan.


May 18th, 2009
12:12 am

Tony…. Texas lost to Texas Texh by 6, not by 1. This is your job, do some research. You should be embarrassed.

Jim Veitch

May 18th, 2009
12:20 am

The holes will be filled on the (D) Line. The secondary and Linebackers will be much better. The entire Team will have more depth than last year. The weapons in the backfield will wear out Defenses this Season. The entire Offense will be more comfortable. Paul Johnson will lead this team to win as a team. We will win more than 9 Games in 2009. Georgia Tech will challenge for the ACC title this season. Georgia will lose 2 in a row when they come into Bobby Dodd Stadium in late November. When everyone thinks that they have the option game Defended. Marcus Wright, Bay Bay Thomas, and Roddy Jones will be open down the field with one on one coverage. This is gonna be fun to watch…Go Jackets ! Go Cowboys in week one !

Troy Cornwell

May 18th, 2009
7:56 am

I have suggestion in these tough economic times. In order to save $ and cutback on travel expenses, why doesn’t the SEC move the championship game to Gainesville since it looks like they’ll be playing in it every year :)


May 18th, 2009
9:42 am

Tony C – they should move the SECCG to Jacksonville just to watch the UGA people flip out. Apparently they’re afraid of that place now.


May 18th, 2009
10:15 am

How can you put FSU at 15 and not even put Miami in the top 25? Miami beat Va Tech last year and lost by 1 point to UNC. Are you not giving Miami any chance becuase of their first 4 games? You will be suprised! If Miami can win 3 or 4 of those first 4 games they will be ranked in the top 5 and top 10 with the latter being 3 wins. With that said it just further proves my point my should be top 25!

JenniferGO Dawgs

May 18th, 2009
10:21 am

The best thing is no one is expecting anything from UGA this year, this as opposed to last year, so you never know, when the pressure is off, who knows what can happen? I am just saying……..

Marble Rye

May 18th, 2009
10:46 am

Any ACC team being in the top-10 screams obligatory. Like the media is still trying to convince everyone the ACC has a national title contender. No ACC team should be ranked higher than 13th in any preseason until they win a national title. For god’s sake quit giving them freebies and make them work for it.


May 18th, 2009
11:03 am

SEC Rules – Your math has failed you once again… if you take out UGA’s first 2 games against DII schools, they got outscored 237-235 in the regular season… and you have proven his point that UF and Bama did most of the ACC bashing.. and Tech would obviously had done better than UGA.. they would have lost the two UGA did, and then they would have beat UGA.. so obviously they would have had a better season record


May 18th, 2009
12:23 pm

Why does everyone have Notre Dame in their top 25? It’s about how good the team is, not how easy their schedule is. Also how is a Kansas team challenging Nebraska for the Big-12 North and Nebraska is not even ranked in your top 25?

[...] our tour of big daily newspaper blogs, here’s a new, post-spring Top 25 from Tony Barnhart in the Atlanta paper. Get a load of this: 10—Ole Miss (9-4, 16): Not sure if [...]


May 19th, 2009
3:22 pm

It will be interesting to see if the SEC can rebound from the worst QB play in the leagues history. Tebow is obviously the exception, but Stafford would have ranked #7 in the Big12 QB ratings. It’s easy to look good on defense when you play sub-par offenses every week.

[...] Barnhart likes the Tide’s spring – he has Bama fourth nationally at the end of the off-season. Dr. Saturday discusses Alabama’s national championship [...]

SEC fears Saban

May 23rd, 2009
8:28 pm

Alabama’s defense will be as good as it has been since 1992. Mc Elroy will fill in nicely at QB and there is no shortage of weapons on that side of the ball.

If Bama takes that opener look out…..

andy allen

May 29th, 2009
9:25 pm

Are you kidding me? BAMA at number 5. They will lose 5 games this year!!!!!!!!!


June 21st, 2009
8:23 pm

So what’s the difference from Alabama losing a left tackle and Ole Miss losing a left tackle? Why isn’t it held against Ole Miss but is held against Alabama?

So what everyone here is saying is Alabama will suck without Mike Shula’s players?!

Saban’s replacing those guys with better ones.

And since when does LSU have any more experience than Bama at QB? By like, what, one game? Cast Alabama aside. Go ahead. Your loss!

[...] AJC [...]


August 28th, 2009
11:21 pm

Watchout…a great southwestern horned lizard is going to come up and