Seeing how it's Saturday, I can't wait to see how wrong I am tomorrow. Anyways, here's the completed Top 26
14.Oregon-Oregon to me is the best team in the Pac-10 and its all due to coaching. They won the Pac-10 outright last year in Chip Kelly's debut season, and with basically thier entire squad returning, they will repeat as west coast champs despite a harsh schedule.
15.Oklahoma-15? Really? I know you shouldn't use history on anybody, but when have they NOT disappointed everyone in Norman? They were 8-5 last year, and this year they're starting as many sophs and frosh as juniors and seniors. They'll improve from last year, win thier division, then get stomped in the Championship game to Nebraska. It's what they do.
16.Penn St.-Joe Pa will not go away. halfway through the decade there were whispers of firing the Great-Great-Grandfather of college football. Since then, he's made trips to the Alamo, Outback, Capital One, Orange, and Rose bowls winning 4 out of five. OSU has the Lions on O but Joe Pa will bring an equal if not better D. With probably the hardest schedule in the country, they will struggle to hit ten wins this year despite a very talented team.
17.South Carolina-This is the best team Spurrier has had in Colombia. The Cocks are a TRUE threat to win the East if they can scrape at least one win at Florida or at home against the Dawgs. Garcia is the real deal at QB, and we're going to see some flashes of the ole Fun and Gun that made us hate Spurrier in the first place.
18.Wisconsin-O-Line. Clay was thier soph 1500 yard rusher last year because the Badgers had a line that could get ME 1000 yards. With just one departure on the entire offense they will improve on those numbers and with just a couple of lucky plays on D, they are the dark horse contenders for the Big-10
19.USC-If Pete Carroll were back, the Trojans would be in the Top 12 if not better. This program is in serious dissarray. The hammer still hasn't hit from the NCAA, and I'm not sold on Kiffin. With a wide open Pac-10 this year, I don't see them getting past Oregon, but they could swing from #2 to #7 and it wouldn't be that surprising.
20.West Virginia-The Mountaineers are just the most consistent team in the Big East(and my only one on the list). With continued disappointing play from Pitt, and Brian Kelly leaving Cincinatti for Notre Dame, the door is wide open for another title for WVU.
21.Notre Dame-Most places have the Irish higher than this. While yes they had a bunch of close losses last year, that's what they've done since Tyrone Willingham was coach. Brian Kelly is an improvement over Weis but he's playing with all of Weis's players. Hawaii bowl here we come!
22.Florida St.-Probably the best offense in the ACC but they have GOT to improve on a terrible defense from last year. The Seminoles will win the Atlantic division then lose to whoever wins the Atlantic.
23.Oregon St.-Classic middle of the road Pac-10 team. Even though I have the Beavers in the Top 26, it wouldn't surprise me if they didn't win SIX games. With thier schedule, I don't see how they win the conference but if they manage second place, then they will probably deserve and at-large BCS bowl bid.
24.Arizona-Solid on both sides of the ball. No stars, but no crippling weaknesses here either. Inexperienced on defense with mostly juniors with few starts among them, the Wildcats will be favorites in the Pac-10 next year if they don't lose too many players to the NFL draft.
25.LSU-Les Miles is in the hot seat. It doesn't seem at all reasonable until you see his conference record. (8-9 in the last 17 SEC games) With only ten returning starters, and I believe that Les Miles's luck has GOT to run out on fourth down, I see LSU as being a distant seventh best in the SEC.
26.California,Stanford,UCLA,Washington-WIDE OPEN Pac-10. I know its kinda cheating putting four teams here, but this is exactly why I did 26 and not 25 slots. As stated before, I say that Oregon is the distinct favorite on the West Coast, but it wouldn't surprise me if USC, Oregon St., Arizona, and company finished second or eighth. Wash, Rinse, Repeat.
Honorable mention-Georgia Tech, Houston, Utah, Michigan St.,Missouri
That's it, folks. Again this is MY preseason Top 26. It is by no means a predicter of things to come. I guess we'll have to see in 5 months how off I was. Cheers guys, it's game time.