Countdown to No. 1: Will No. 7 Nebraska get its revenge on Texas?

 We continue our Countdown to No. 1 today with teams 6 through 10. I know some people will disagree on Nebraska at No. 7 but I think this will be a breakout year for the Cornhuskers under Bo Pelini.

I have Oregon at No. 8 and have noticed that some folks don’t have them in the Top Ten or ranked at all. Yeah, the Ducks lost QB Jeremiah Masoli but they have 18 starters coming back from a Rose Bowl team. And Chip Kelly is a really good coach.

So tell me what you think. We’ll have to Top Five on Friday to close out the week.

 

10. Iowa

**–It will be a good season if: The Hawkeyes can replace four starters on the offensive line and running back Jewel Hampton returns to form after sitting out last season with a knee injury. The schedule is set up with Penn State, Wisconsin, and Ohio State at home.

**–It will be a disappointing season if: Quarterback Ricky Stanzi can’t cut down on his interceptions after throwing 15 last season. Stanzi is a gamer and comes up big in big situations. But he also tries to force the ball into coverage.

9. Oklahoma

**–It will be a good season if: The Sooners win the Big 12 South.  The Sooners can do it if  quarterback Landry Jones picks up where he left off when he subbed for the injured Sam Bradford last season. Oklahoma must replace four first-round draft choices but the Sooners believe this will be one of their better defenses.

**–It will be a disappointing season if: Oklahoma focuses so much on the Oct. 2 game with Texas that it forgets that Florida State is coming to Norman on Sept. 11. In fact, the Sooners have three potentially tough non-conference games with FSU, Air Force and Cincinnati.

8. Oregon

**–It will  be a good season if: The Ducks win the Pac-10 again and go back to the Rose Bowl, despite the loss of quarterback Jeremiah Masoli. There have been some other offseason problems, including one with running back LaMichael James, who will be suspended for the firt game.  This is still a very good football team.

**–It will be a disappointing season if: Nate Costa doesn’t come through as the new quarterback. So much of what Chip Kelly does is based on the quarterback and his mobility.  Last season Costa subbed for an injured Masoli and completed 20 of 33 passes in a win over UCLA. But he has also had two season-ending knee injuries in his career.

7. Nebraska

**–It will be good season if: The Cornhuskers get revenge for last season’s controversial finish in the Big 12 championship game by beating Texas on Oct. 16 in Lincoln.  Nebraska could get another shot at Texas in the Big 12 championship game on Dec. 4. Beating Texas twice in one season and winning a championship would be a sweet way for Nebraska to say goodbye to the Big 12. Nebraska joins the Big Ten in 2011.

**–It will be a disappointing season if: Nebraska doesn’t win the Big 12 North. The Huskers are strong, even without the great DT Ndamukong Suh. And the Big 12 North is pretty weak.

6. TCU

**–It will be a good season if: The Horned Frogs beat Oregon State in the opener run through the Mountain West again and go to a BCS Bowl for the second straight season. Despite the loss of All-America DE Jerry Hughes, this looks like Gary Patterson’s best team since he’s been in Fort Worth.

**–It will be a disappointing season if: If quarterback Andy Dalton, the MWC offensive player of the year in 2009, struggles or gets hurt. Anything less than BCS bowl will be a disappointment for Horned Frogs.

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Programmng Note: The summertime edition of “Talkin’ Football” continues tonight at 6 p.m. on CSS. Bob Neal, Mark Schlabach, Brady Ackerman and yours truly will continue our discussion of the top teams and the top players to watch as we get ready for the 2010 season. Check it out.

290 comments Add your comment

Daniel

August 19th, 2010
11:55 am

But Fred said he was joking, Lewis. By definition, he wasn’t trying to be reasonable.

third quarter fan

August 19th, 2010
12:07 pm

entertainers unemployed everywhere and Fred is trying to be funny…..

Just KIDDING!

BuzzKill

August 19th, 2010
12:08 pm

Since we’re talking college football here.

Can someone explain this:

How is it possible that players like AJ Green and Washaun Ealy
turned AGE 20 several months…BEFORE…they started their “Freshman” year at UGA??

Lewis Grizzard

August 19th, 2010
12:12 pm

I won’t be baited Daniel. I’ll explain this once… Fred was trying to reason with the idiots who could not understand that he was jokingly taking a swipe at someone who was trolling the board disparaging him and the team he supports.

Tide Rising

August 19th, 2010
12:26 pm

OU looks like the darkhorse nc contender this year. They had an incredible rash of injuries last year with a lot of key players missing either the whole year or good portions of the season. And when they lost Sam Bradford in the 1st qtr of the Texas game they still only lost 16-13 and that was cause Jordan Shipley ran a kick back 80 yds for a td. Look for OU to be back with a vengeance. Probably won’t stop them from losing yet another bcs title game though- probably to an sec team.

Neb and Iowa- Neb.’s defense could be even better than last year even without Suh if that’s possible. Iowa has a great D too. Still I don’t think either of these teams can muster enough offense to win it all.

Oregon is the opposite of Neb. and Iowa. Great offense but not enough D to win an nc.

TCU- great football team but probably not enough overall depth and talent to win a bcs title against Bama, Fla, or Ohio State type talent.

Tide Rising

August 19th, 2010
12:29 pm

BuzzKill,

Easy. They probably just failed a grade somewhere in school or their parents set them back 1 year. It happens and there are probably a few players on everyone’s team that had to repeat a grade.

Cracker Jacket

August 19th, 2010
12:33 pm

Seems like a ton of posters here can do nothing but attempt to insult. And 98% of them aren’t very good at it at all. Talk football! Be civil! Opinions are like ….., well, never mind. I’m really blown away at the ones that attempt to call Mr. Barnhart’s predictions stupid. He does this for a living! He asked for thoughts, not insults!

SSIgator

August 19th, 2010
12:41 pm

Tide Rising -

Q Dawg is back from yesterday, but today he is Randy. I saw something about Alabama a couple of weeks ago referencing the “punt, bama, punt” game and they showed the replay of both attempted punts. To this day I do not understand how that could have been allowed to happen. Kind of like UGA giving up 52 points to the Gators in Athens. Hard to believe.

CBS hires Mike Leach

August 19th, 2010
12:41 pm

Hey Tony,
““““““`
Texas Tech stomped both Nebraska and Oklahoma last year.

Coolest in the Clutch

August 19th, 2010
12:42 pm

——————————
…. Nesbitt for Heisman
——————————

fishtales

August 19th, 2010
12:55 pm

SSI…
We’ve inexpicably given away a couple of Iron Bowl’s like that. See 1997 for instance.

TXDawg

August 19th, 2010
1:00 pm

Fred (”TCU solved that little probelm by refusing to play Oklahoma any more”) – you got your facts on backwards. It’s Oklahoma and the rest of the Big XII (save Texas) that doesn’t want to play TCU. TCU is constantly trying to schedule Big XII competition so they can continue to beat them and prove what a mistake it was for them being left out of the move from the SWC to the Big XII. Matter of fact, TCU reaches out to BCS conference schools for games and doesn’t have the luck in securing more desireable games because the “top tier” schools are afraid to schedule them. If you have a problem with their ranking, check their record against BCS schools over the past 5 years then come back and post some valid comments.

Haha

August 19th, 2010
1:08 pm

Roger clemens to be indicted for perjury

Longhorn beef stew

August 19th, 2010
1:13 pm

The Big 12 should have suspended that officiating crew working the Nebraska-Texas game.
.
One second remaining cause because wimpy Mack Brown pleaded on his knees.

UNC needs game, any VOLUNTEERS?

August 19th, 2010
1:17 pm

A proud SEC program buying out of games with ACC teams? Vol fans, no more smack talk from you for a month is your penalty.

Kirk Frentz

August 19th, 2010
1:18 pm

Dang it! If we had had a stronger bowl opponent in the Orange Bowl we would have been ranked higher than this. Those Wake Forest Yellowjackets just didn’t give us a big enough push to start this year. Maybe we can play those ACC champs Georgia Bulldogs I hear they have a solid running game.

VolinIrmoSC

August 19th, 2010
1:18 pm

Tony I enjoy your column. But I do believe you have the Quack Attack too highly rated. I believe they will come to Rocky Top on Sept. 11th and lose. This Oregon Team reminds me a lot of the ‘06 Cal Team which was highly regarded came to Rocky Top and got beat. These current Vols are more blue collar, hard hat guys who bring their lunch pails, with thermos, to work everyday. CDD and his staff will get this team to jell. I just thing a SEC Team picked 5th in the East, playing at home, can beat a Pac-10 defending Rose Bowl Team. We will soon see!

gdawginkalamazoo

August 19th, 2010
1:19 pm

haha, Roger is getting indicted for misremembering?

6-7 Texas A&M

August 19th, 2010
1:23 pm

*
Shreveport and UGA make good bed-fellows.

Tide Rising

August 19th, 2010
1:24 pm

SSIgator,

The guy posting as Randy is Patrick Sulley. He posts the same stuff every single day under a different handle- usually generic names like Randy, David, etc. Its just good ole Patrick Sulley. I was reading back throught he comments and was kind of surprised that no one caught onto him. You always know his posts cause its the same stuff regardless of topic- he promotes Richt for his consistency and rants against Saban uses the same stats over and over. Yesterday I just agreed with him that Saban sucks and that Richt is the best coach in the sec and he just went away. Today he is Randy tomorrow he will be Bill or John or whoever.

78 dog is also a dumba$$

August 19th, 2010
1:26 pm

Get back in your straight jacket.

McDawg

August 19th, 2010
1:33 pm

BCS game could be Big Ten v Big 12-one loss SEC team this year may not cut it

Tide Rising

August 19th, 2010
1:42 pm

SSIgator,

That 72 Iron Bowl was unbelievable. And inexplicably the same AU guy blocked the punt both times and the same AU guy picked it up both times and took it for a td. The replays of the 2 plays look almost the same.

I had the same thing happen to me during bowl season on a UCLA bowl game several years ago except this time I was on the winning side. UCLA was covering and beating someone(can’t remember who) and covering comfortably by like 2 scores 2 minutes left. Well, this time the other team drives and scores a meaningless td with a minute left. I’m no longer covering on a $300 bet. They try an onsides kick. The UCLA guy on the front line snags the ball out of midair, the kickoff team completely overruns the play, and the UCLA guy runs it back 50 yds the other way for a td and all of a sudden I’m covering again.

Then the other team drives the distance with under a minute left and scores a td with a couple seconds left on the clock and all of a sudden I’m not covering again. Then they line up for an onsides kick. The same UCLA guy on the frontline snags the ball out of midair, the kickoff team overruns the play again, and the UCLA guy runs 50 yards again for a td with literally no time left on the clock. I cover and win the game. Unfreakingbelievable. I was going bonkers. I think it was 2003 because I racked up that year, won like $4,000 betting and won $800 on LSU in the bcs title game so I’m pretty sure it was 03-04 bowl season.

I can’t remember the team UCLA beat but I think it was a mid tier conference team like a UTEP or a Fresno State or someone like that-maybe a big 12 team. I can’t be the only one on here who remembers that game. If I am its only because unless you were betting on it it was a boring, irrelevant game and who would be watching a game with onsides kicks in the last minute or 2 with 1 team up by 2 scores. But they did show the replays over and over on ESPN.

LowCountryDawg07

August 19th, 2010
1:45 pm

All depends on whos playing in Atlanta and records.

Roger Clemens

August 19th, 2010
1:52 pm

Tide Rising, I think I remember that game, but then again I misremember a lot of stuff these days. Roids evidently will do that to you.

Tide Rising

August 19th, 2010
1:56 pm

McDawg,

I think it will be an undefeated big 12 (Texas or OU) or one loss big 12 team vs a once beaten big 10 team like Ohio State. Its possible that there could be a 1 loss sec team this year but I just don’t see it. There are so many good teams in the sec this year that I just don’t see a 1 loss team. I’m thinking the sec champ will most likely be a 2 loss team. I had chalked up Ole Miss as our only sure win this year and then when I read that they got Masoli from Oregon I put that one back in the either team can win column. There’s not one sec game that anyone can take for granted this year except possibly Vandy and we don’t play them.

McDawg

August 19th, 2010
1:59 pm

I think the powers that be would love a Nebraska vs Ohio State in anticpation of realingment

Tide Rising

August 19th, 2010
1:59 pm

Clemens,

Like the “punt bama punt game” in 72 or the cal-stanford kickoff return that UCLA game was one of those once or twice in lifetime games that you witness where something that unusual really happens.

Fred

August 19th, 2010
2:17 pm

How about the the Boise State OU bowl game Tide?

Mikey in SAV

August 19th, 2010
2:25 pm

Well, Tony, I already know your top 5 tomorrow. Duh !!!

1- AL
2- UF
3- TX
4- The OHIO ST
5-Boise ST

Tide Rising

August 19th, 2010
2:28 pm

Fred,

I can see that. If Boise goes unbeaten they could meet up with an unbeaten winner of Texas/OU and personally I think OU beats the guys that wear cows on their helmets this year. I think everyone in the big 10 loses a game this year and the sec champ loses at least 1 game and probably 2.

Fred

August 19th, 2010
2:30 pm

LOL I meant the OU/Boise State game in the Fiesta Bowl 2007………….

amg

August 19th, 2010
2:33 pm

Randy, just don’t go jumping off buildings with a cape strapped to your back, you will fall to the ground and get crushed almost as bad as your pipe dream of UGA beingA NC team. UGA will lose 5 games again this year, possible six. They will not endup a top 25 team, sorry Randy, but this is almost certain to anyone who is being honest about them. Oh Also, you are correct to say Bama will not be a top 5 team this year, they will lose 3 games this year.

Tide Rising

August 19th, 2010
2:42 pm

Fred,

That OU/Boise game was a doozie even if I was pulling for OU. But OU didn’t have a lot to play for. They looked almost like they didn’t want to be there kinda like Bama/Utah 2 years ago. If I remember correctly they were a 2 loss team and got left out of the bcs title game and instead wound up playing Boise. That’s quite a psychological letdown and I seriously doubt they were fully up for that game.

5IML

August 19th, 2010
4:05 pm

Herbstreit says the sky’s the limit for Auburn this year. And he expects the Iron Bowl to double as the SEC West championship game.

I think we can lump Herby in with Phil Steele when it comes to predictions.

Fred

August 19th, 2010
4:33 pm

Herby is pretty sharp but at the same time he’s an idiot sometimes lol. I remember a few years ago, right after they took strength of schedule out of the BCS equation he was talking about what a weak non conference schedule OSU had to go along with their weak Conference schedule. He says that they play no one and aren’t really that good, then he turns around and says that will schedule will help them go undefeated and get into the Championship game even though they don’t deserve to be there which he also admitted.

The system is screwed lol.

Tide4u2c

August 19th, 2010
4:45 pm

There is no reason to believe Auburn will win the west this year I mean they showed no signs last year of improvement unlike Saban’s first year at Alabama. Even with depth problems Alabama put it on Tennessee and barely lost to Georgia in OT by a field goal.

You could see glimpses of Bama’s future Saban’s first year.No team dominated Alabama either that year even games Bama lost were close tough games even LSU fans got a scare in the Bama/LSU game.Then even with depth problems the text book scandal hit and 4 players were out for the last 4 games still no team dominated Bama that year with depth problems.Yes Bama lost some close games that year and had an embarrassing loss to Louisiana Monroe but you could still see underneath the depth problems Bama faced there was improvenment just not enough horses yet.

Nobody seen that with Auburn last year the only positive thing Auburn fans might can cling to is that they are past their first year coach growing pains and are recruiting pretty good but that is about it. In no way have we seen signs that Auburn will suddenly turn things around and win the SEC west.

Lewis Grizzard

August 19th, 2010
5:04 pm

O.U. has Willie Martinez coaching Defense now, so you can rule them out for making it to the NC game.

Tide Rising

August 19th, 2010
5:04 pm

Auburn will be much better. They have a large senior class, they will have a little better depth this year, and it will be year 2 under their coaching staff which always helps. Overall I still don’t think they have enough to win the division just due to depth. But I can see them winning 9-10 games perhaps and beating several good teams and having an upset loss or 2 along the way.

I will say that in Saban’s first year when we went 7-6 you could tell we were going to be much better in 08 simply by looking at those 6 losses. No one beat us that year by more than 7 pts and every game was in contention. That’s what you look for the next year when you look for teams that could jump from a 4 to 6 loss year to a possible unbeaten or 1-2 loss year.

If a team got blown out at least a couple of times in one season they are very unlikely to all of a sudden reach a championship level in 1 year. I think AU got blown out only once last year but otherwise most of their losses were close-Bama, UGA, Only LSU game was ugly or did someone else beat AU bad last year?

Fred

August 19th, 2010
5:08 pm

Holy crap Lewis, don’t tell me that. Are you SERIOUS? What did Bob Stoops do to piss off his brother so badly that he won’t come back and coach the defense? He went to a Florida team instead. I forget if it’s FSU or the Gators, but he is an awesome D coordinator……………

my poor Sooners don’t have a chance anymore………..

Lewis Grizzard

August 19th, 2010
5:12 pm

Tide4u2c

August 19th, 2010
5:17 pm

Well we know every team will be gunning for Alabama and especially Auburn plus the SEC west should be improved like Arkansas past their first year coaching pains too, Ole Miss about the same ditto for LSU.But Auburn can never really be counted out just from a rivalry standpoint but I have’nt seen any signs to believe auburn can win the west this year.I think people just hope it with no signs to speak of.

Fred

August 19th, 2010
5:30 pm

Tide4u2c : I never saw signs last year that LSU had an offense and I haven’t read anywhere anything to indicate that has changed. All last season I saw them creep up the ranking and kept asking WHY? They can’t score. Auburn on the other hand, while inconsistent, showed some signs of life. I hate to say that because I really detest Auburn.

Lewis: Thanks for the link. I feel better now that i know he’s just an assistant, not the D-Co-ordinator. Not much better though. WHile Stoops is an awesome D guy, he’s also the head coach and is on the sideline doing the whole team, not up in the box just watching the D. He has shown in the past ten years that he can’t make defensive adjustments from the sideline. If you nail his defensive game plan in the first half, you are going to kill him in the second half. Bob Miles proved that when he was at Oklahoma State. What’s worse is that once one team finds the weak spots in his defense, Bob doesn’t change it, so every team that follows knows how to beat him.

As an OU fan, it’s embarrassing to watch. It’s embarrassing to watch them year after year get into BCS bowl games when you know they are going to lose. Oh well, maybe God spoke to him in the off season and gave him a revelation………..

StraightJacket

August 19th, 2010
5:51 pm

Ohio State will have 3 losses and will STILL wind up with enough sympathy votes from writers to end up somewhere between 6 and 10. Texas will have a loss to Nebraska and will also lose the Big 12 CG, so put them between 6 and 10.

Some people are suggesting Ugag should be here. Really?

Like EVERY Year, Ugag competes for Number 1 in recruiting, Number 1 in Pre-Season Polls. Number 1 in Fulmer Cup Standings, and Number ….. 2,3,4, or 5 in the SEC East.

Remember: The SEC moved to Atlanta for the SECCG YEARS ago … because it was the best way to insure a neutral crowd … since Ugag would so seldom ever be in the game.

Buss

August 19th, 2010
6:01 pm

The AJC guys post pretty much the same stuff daily.

We know, they all think Richt stinks, Paul Johynson rocks, and Saban & Meyer are both unbeatable, depsite losing 1/2 their team, and Meyer losing Strong & Tebow.

Hilarious. This should be a comedy strip.

Jones

August 19th, 2010
6:02 pm

Uh oh, Tide Rising/Fred/Lewis, can they all be the same person?, seems to be blogging to himself again today.

Rob

August 19th, 2010
6:06 pm

I’m actually sort of hoping for a Boise State vs. TCU national title game. If the major conferences got shut out of the title game, then we would see a plus one system within two years.

Sugar Hay

August 19th, 2010
6:14 pm

What in the world?

Did Tony Bernhart REALLY rank Iowa ahead of Mark Richt? Iowa? Really? Iowa, ahead of Georgia, ahead of Coach Mark Richt? Iowa?

WOW, you never know what kind of reach your going to get on Mr. CFB’s blog, then again, when it comes ot Richt, Mr. CFB’s pretty predictable the last few years, big on Meyer, down on Richt.

Sugar Hay

August 19th, 2010
6:20 pm

Going to be glorius siht watching Meyer melt down. Florida gets Georgia, Alabama, LSU, South Carolina, FSU. MELTDOWN.

kenneth

August 19th, 2010
6:36 pm

Its funny how these comment are made about a team that hasnt won a championship since 1980. What Richt has done at UGA is not even great but all you idiots from georgia think he is so great. When in the history of football has an asst coach got any glory for a championship. they only make limited decisions. Bobby Bowden is the reason for the 1990’s championships at FSU. He is the one who made the decisions. UGA cant even win the SEC east. Try winning your own division before you mouth off about a national championship. Instead of trying to put another team down make sure your team can win something more than the toliet bowl.