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.