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‘The Nasty Boys’ College Football Preseason Top 25

Posted by Condo on July 20, 2007

With college football season just around the corner and many different publications putting out their own preseason rankings, I thought it was time for ‘The Nasty Boys’ to put out their own preseason Top 25 rankings along with the teams I think will be heading to New Orleans in January to play for the national championship. So, without further adu, I bring you ‘The Nasty Boys’ Preseason Top 25!

1. USC Trojans (Last Season: 11-2. AP Poll Finish: 4)
The Trojans return 10 starters on defense and 15 overall including quarterback and Heisman Trophy candidate John David Booty. This team will have some tough road games at Nebraska, Notre Dame, Oregon, and Cal, but don’t be surprised if they manage to run the table with the ungodly amount of talent they have.
Toughest Game: @ California (Nov. 10)
Upset Alert: @ Arizona State (Nov. 22)

2. LSU Tigers (Last Season: 11-2. AP Poll Finish: 3)
Even though the Tigers lost #1 overall pick JaMarcus Russell, does anyone remember QB Matt Flynn, Offensive MVP of the 2006 Peach Bowl? If you don’t, you soon will. The Tigers have a daunting schedule as always in the SEC, but at least they get the ‘big SEC games’ on home turf.
Toughest Game: Florida (Oct. 6)
Upset Alert: @ Kentucky (Oct. 13)

3. West Virginia Moutaineers (Last Season: 11-2. AP Poll Finish: 10)
The best dual threat QB in the nation, in Pat White, along with one of the best running backs in the nation, in Steve Slaton, give WVU the best rushing attack in the country. As long as the defense can be decent, this offense should have no problems scoring points.
Toughest Game: Louisville (Nov. 8)
Upset Alert: @ Cincinnati (Nov. 17)

4. Michigan Wolverines (Last Season: 11-2. AP Poll Finish: 8)
Returning one of the best senior quarterback/running back combo’s in Chad Henne and Mike Hart. Losing Lamar Woodley, Alan Branch, Prescott Burgess, David Harris, and Leon Hall will most certainly hurt the defense, but returning virtually the entire offense should provide enough pick-me-up for Michigan to have a strong season.
Toughest Game: Ohio State (Nov. 17)
Upset Alert: @ Illinois (Oct. 20)

5. Florida Gators (Last Season: 13-1. AP Poll Finish: 1)
If Tim Tebow can throw half as good as he can run with the football, Florida can possibly repeat as national champs. You know Urban Meyer is going have plenty of trick plays up his sleeve not to mention plenty of team speed. The schedule as always is daunting but if they can win @ LSU (Oct. 6) the rest of their tough games are at home and they could make a run.
Toughest Game: @ LSU (Oct. 6)
Upset Alert: @ South Carolina (Nov. 10)

6. Oklahoma Sooners (Last Season: 11-3. AP Poll Finish: 11)
The Sooners may have just recently been hit with violations, but that doesn’t stop them from making another annual run towards a national title. There is a question of who will take over at QB, but hey, they stuck a former wide-out there last year and won 11 games, so that shouldn’t be an issue. Allen Patrick gets to show he can carry the rock as well as Adrian Peterson for a full season.
Toughest Game: Texas (Oct. 6, in Dallas TX)
Upset Alert: Oklahoma State (Oct. 27)

7. Wisconsin Badgers (Last Season: 12-1. AP Poll Finish: 7)
Wisconsin had a surprisingly nice season under first year coach Bret Bilema winning 12 games, the most in school history. This season, the Badgers won’t be taken so lightly, and will have to face a much more difficult schedule without their heart and soul, QB John Stocco, who meant more to Wisconsin than people realize. Fortunately, whoever the new QB is, they will have the luxury of turning around and handing the ball to P.J. Hill.
Toughest Game: Michigan (Nov. 10)
Upset Alert: Indiana (Oct. 27)

8. Texas Longhorns (Last Season: 10-3. AP Poll Finish: 13)
Texas brings back a loaded offense, that includes sophomore QB Colt McCoy. The defense was not very strong last season, and the departure of defensive coordinator Gene Chizik to Iowa State will certainly hurt, but like WVU, if the defense plays just solid, the offense can carry them in many games.
Toughest Game: Oklahoma (Oct. 6, Dallas TX)
Upset Alert: @ Iowa State (Oct. 13)

9. Louisville Cardinals (Last Season: 12-1. AP Poll Finish: 6)
Louisville may have lost Bobby Petrino, but replacement Steve Kragthorpe is a more personable version of Petrino and brings in an offense just as dynamic as Petrino’s. Heisman Trophy candidate Brian Brohm leads these Cards on the charge along with receivers Harry Douglas and Mario Urrutia. The defense lost a lot, but this offense is capable of possibly carrying the Cardinals to a Big East Title and National Title shot.
Toughest Game: @ West Virginia (Nov. 8)
Upset Alert: @ NC State (Sept. 29)

10. Virginia Tech Hokies (Last Season: 10-3. AP Poll Finish: 19)
Bringing back 16 starters from a 10-3 team is usually nice, especially when it’s 8 on each side of the ball and you have Frank Beamer as your head coach. The tragedies at VA Tech this past April will cause these players to play with heavy hearts, and it starts tough traveling to LSU on September 8th. VA Tech may not win that game, but if they do, look out, this team could run the table and end up making a run for the national title.
Toughest Game: @ LSU (Sept. 8)
Upset Alert: @ Georgia Tech (Nov. 1)

(The rest of the field after the jump.)

11. California Golden Bears (Last Season: 10-3. AP Poll Finish: 14)
There’s a new Reggie Bush in the PAC-10, and his name is DeSean Jackson. Last season Jackson caught 16 TD passes and ran back 4 punts to the house and any time he touches the ball, he’s got the ability to take it the distance. The Cal offense is loaded and licking their chops to open the season at home against Tennessee after what the Volunteers did to them last season. If Cal’s defense can be half as good as their offense, look out, this is a team to keep an eye on.
Toughest Game: USC (Nov. 10)
Upset Alert: Washington State (Nov. 3)

12. Ohio State Buckeyes (Last Season: 12-1. AP Poll Finish: 2)
The Buckeyes are my favorite team, but let’s be honest, they lost A LOT from last season’s runner-up team. The defense will be much stronger after a year of playing together and should make this into a typical Tressell ball team, but they have to completely reload on the offensive side of the ball. Will QB Todd Boeckman be the ‘Craig Krenzel’ and lead this team to the promised land, or will he be like Justin Zwick and eventually hand the reins over to ‘Troy Smith impersonator,’ freshman Antonio Henton? Only time will tell.
Toughest Game: @ Michigan (Nov. 17)
Upset Alert: @ Purdue (Oct. 6)

13. Arkansas Razorbacks (Last Season: 10-4. AP Poll Finish: 15)
This team features the soon to be Heisman Trophy winner (in my opinion) in RB Darren McFadden and another stud RB in Felix Jones. This is the one team who may be capable of running the football better than West Virginia. If the defense plays well, and QB Casey Dick plays smart and doesn’t turn the ball over, this team could turn some more heads again and maybe win the SEC.
Toughest Game: @ LSU (Nov. 23)
Upset Alert: @ Ole Miss (Oct. 20)

14. Tennessee Volunteers (Last Season: 9-4. AP Poll Finish: 25)
QB Erik Ainge had better be ready to help Tennessee take the next step and bring them back to winning at least the SEC East, or Phil Fulmer’s job could be in trouble. Tennessee’s schedule starts off brutally tough and will make or break their season. They have the talent to compete, the question is, will they? I think they will.
Toughest Game: @ Florida (Sept. 15)
Upset Alert: @ Kentucky (Nov. 24)

15. Nebraska Cornhuskers (Last Season: 9-5. AP Poll Finish: Unranked)
Senior QB transfer from Arizona State, Sam Keller, hopes to help lead Bill Callahan’s crew to their first Big XII title since 1999. The team has big holes to fill as the entire front four on defense needs to be replaced. But the offense should be hitting on all cylinders by now in Callahan’s 4th season as head coach as he’s had the time to get his recruits in. The team should have no issue getting to the Big XII Title game, winning it is the hard part.
Toughest Game: USC (Sept. 15)
Upset Alert: @ Missouri (Oct. 6)

16. Penn State Nittany Lions (Last Season: 9-4. AP Poll Finish: 24)
With one full year as a starter under his belt, QB Anthony Morelli seems poised and ready to take the Nittany Lions and their top flight receivers to the top of the Big Ten again. The problem is, the Big Ten has three other strong teams in front of them. Penn State has as good of a shot as anyone with their textbook defense and dangerous receiving threats, but who is going to replace RB Tony Hunt? If the Lions figure that out, they could be tough to beat.
Toughest Game: @ Michigan (Sept. 22)
Upset Alert: Iowa (Oct. 6)

17. Georgia Bulldogs (Last Season: 9-4. AP Poll Finish: 23)
Sophomore QB Matthew Stafford appears ready to breakout after an up and down freshman season that finished very promising with big wins over Georgia Tech and Virginia Tech. The Bulldogs have a lot of holes to fill on the defensive side of the ball, but that never seems to be a problem for the Bulldogs, the problem, as usual, will be the tough schedule.
Toughest Game: Florida (Oct. 27, Jacksonville FL)
Upset Alert: South Carolina (Sept. 8)

18. UCLA Bruins (Last Season: 7-6. AP Poll Finish: Unranked)
The Bruins return 20 out of a possible 22 starters from last season’s team that capped off the regular season defeating USC 13-9. They have a strong schedule that will prove to be challenging, but this is a sleeper team to watch for in the Pac-10 all season long.
Toughest Game: @ USC (Dec. 1)
Upset Alert: @ Arizona (Nov. 3)

19. Miami (FL) Hurricanes (Last Season: 7-6. AP Poll Finish: Unranked)
To think that Miami could put together another 7-6 record with all the talent down there would be unbelievable. New coach Randy Shannon has a tough task ahead of him, but the talent he has should help him out immensely. QB Kyle Wright is entering his 3rd season as a starter and should help lead the Canes to victories they couldn’t pull out last season. Discipline will be the key with this team, and if disciplined, they can win the ACC.
Toughest Game: @ Oklahoma (Sept. 8)
Upset Alert: @ North Carolina (Oct. 6)

20. Rutgers Scarlet Knights (Last Season: 11-2. AP Poll Finish: 12)
Rutgers was the Cinderella story last season, but don’t look for it to be so easy this time around with a bullseye on their back now that everyone knows about them. Losing “Mr. Everything” Brian Leonard will really hurt this squad, but Greg Schiano is a great coach and will keep this team in the Top 25 all year long, just don’t go out expecting a National Yitle or even a Big East Title in Piscataway this season.
Toughest Game: West Virginia (Oct. 27)
Upset Alert: @ Syracuse (Oct. 13)

21. Florida State Seminoles (Last Season: 7-6. AP Poll Finish: Unranked)
For the first time in a long time, Bobby Bowden’s squad didn’t finish the season ranked in the Top 25. That should change this season as the Seminoles have plenty of talent, as always, on their squad. New offensive coordinator from LSU, Jimbo Fisher, joins the coaching staff at FSU and as long as they figure out who the QB will be (Xavier Lee or Drew Weatherford) before the season starts, this team should contend in the ACC.
Toughest Game: @ Florida (Nov. 24)
Upset Alert: @ Colorado (Sept. 15)

22. Oklahoma State Cowboys (Last Season: 7-6. AP Poll Finish: Unranked)
The Cowboys are a team on the rise and, in Mike Gundy’s third year as coach, should turn some heads. The offense was fantastic last season and should be good again with the return of QB Bobby Reid and WR Adarius Bowman. If the defense can improve under new defensive coordinator Tim Beckman (formerally of Ohio State), this team could be up there with Oklahoma and Texas competing in the Big 12 South.
Toughest Game: @ Oklahoma (Oct. 27)
Upset Alert: Kansas State (Oct. 20)

23. Hawaii Warriors (Last Season: 11-3. AP Poll Finish: Unranked)
Can Hawaii be this year’s Boise State? They will be if Heisman Trophy candidate Colt Brennan has anything to say about it. The Warriors return 15 starters, which will certainly help, and it also helps to have all their key games on the island. However, losing defensive coordinator Jerry Glanville could also hurt this team and keep them from doing what Boise State did last season.
Toughest Game: Boise State (Nov. 23)
Upset Alert: @ UNLV (Sept. 15)

24. Oregon State Beavers (Last Season: 10-4. AP Poll Finish: 21)
The Beavers return a good nucleus of players returning from a team who finished last season on a 9 game winning streak, including knocking off USC at home. If the new quaterback, whether it’s Sean Canfield or Lyle Moevao, can produce, the Beavers will be up at the top fighting with big dogs USC and Cal for a Pac-10 title.
Toughest Game: @ USC (Nov. 3)
Upset Alert: @ Cincinnati (Sept. 6)

25. Kentucky Wildcats (Last Season: 8-5. AP Poll Finish: Unranked)
Alright, so I put UK here because it’s where Matt goes to school, but they are a really big sleeper in the SEC this season. The schedule, like any SEC team’s, is grueling, but with Heisman candidate Andre Woodson, and a slew of playmakers on offense, this team is just as good as anyone on offense. The question is will the defense be strong enough to compete in the SEC? We’ll see…
Toughest Game: Pick one… LSU, Florida, Louisville, @ Arkansas
Upset Alert: Mississippi State (Oct. 27)

Others Receiving Consideration:
Georgia Tech, Auburn, TCU, Texas A&M, Wake Forest, South Florida, South Carolina, and Boston College.

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15 Responses to “‘The Nasty Boys’ College Football Preseason Top 25”

  1. […] Original post by Condo […]

  2. Matt said

    Way to come through big on the Top 25, Chris, very nice opinions.

    Just a couple of items I had to note:

    -I appreciate the much love for my Wildcats (#25 plus ‘Upset Specials’ against LSU and Tennessee) and I think they will certainly surprise some people this year, but unless a stud class comes in for next season, we lose a lot at the end of this season so it is now or never to get the national recognition to turn the recruiting corner.

    -QB Andre Woodson is better than EVERYBODY gives him credit for. Kentucky wins more games last season and Woodson finishes Top 5 or 6 for Heisman (all played 13-games):
    A. Woodson: 264-for-419 (63.00%), 3515 yards, 31 TDs, 7 INTs; 70 rushes, -137 yards, 1 TD (Efficiency: 154.55)
    T. Smith: 203-for-311 (65.30%), 2542 yards, 30 TDs, 6 INTs; 72 rushes, 204 yards, 1 TD (Efficiency: 161.90)
    B. Quinn: 289-for-467 (61.88%), 3426 yareds, 37 TDs, 7 INTs; 82 rushes, 72 yareds, 2 TD (Efficiencey: 146.7)

    However, there are more weapons on offense:
    K. Burton WR 2006: 77 rec., 1036 yards, 12 TDs
    D. Lyons, JR. WR 2006: 50 rec., 822 yards, 9 TDs

    R. Little is an unbelievable all-purpose guy (only 9 games): 140 rushes, 709 yards, 3 TDs; 31 rec., 391 yards, 2 TD; 317 punt ret. yards, 1 TD

    TE Jacob Tamme made First Team All SEC (coach’s preseason).

    You hit it right on the head with their offensive weapons, we’ll see if they can actually contend for a Top 25 spot.

    The only thing I will throw out there is, what about an “Upset Special” for Louisville (@ Kentucky) in Week 3 (Sept. 15)? In-state rivalry and Kentucky was 5-1 at home last year…

    Good stuff, though.

  3. Condo said

    Matt, I definitely considered using UK as the ‘upset alert’ against Louisville. And I actually peg Louisville as the ‘dog’ if the game was played in its usual spot during week #1. However, with the move to the third game of the season, I think this gives Louisville’s new coach time to get the team firing up on all cylinders. I still think that UK is definitely primed to ‘upset’ Louisville, but I’m not as sure it will happen in week 3 as opposed to week 1. One thing is for sure though, if you love offense, then find a way to watch UL/UK as there will be plenty of it.

    Also, another reason I chose not to use UK for the upset alert there is I tried to stay away from using the same team more than once, twice tops on the upset alert. And using them against LSU & Tennessee keeps me from using them against U of L.

  4. Matt said

    No, all good points, especially with the game being moved. Also, I understand with only using them twice and actually I thoroughly enjoyed the use of them twice. Tennessee at home, last game of the season, I haven’t been to the Tennessee game my entire career because it falls during Thanksgiving Break and I have family stuff. Well, not this year, I am definitely going.

    Good thoughts.

  5. The General said

    I am still committed to sponsoring the Nasty Boys pregame report from commonwealth on Sept 15th…

  6. The General said

    ps: dont skip family time to go to the tennessee game. the only good thing that has come of it the 3 times i have done it is i got relations one time.

  7. Matt said

    I will hold you to that on September 15th, just let me know.

    And oh, I AM skipping family time, trust me. I owe it to myself, and besides, I don’t even like my family that much…..

    “Relations.” Hilarious.

  8. PC said

    One non BCS team in the 25? Are you kidding me? TCU, Utah, Boise State? Where are they? Not on deserves a rank?

  9. Condo said

    PC… yes, I realize I’m lacking some Non-BCS teams like Utah, TCU, Boise State, etc… but keep in mind, it’s a ‘pre-season top 25’ .. I’m more sure on some BCS teams right now than I am on others like Boise State (Ian Johnson is the only main cog returning), Utah (quite frankly, I don’t know enough about them to be confident enough to put them in a pre-season top 25) and TCU probably is more deserving than several teams on my list, but again I don’t know quite enough about them to feel confident putting them in the top 25 over a few teams. Not to mention, having Texas in Week 2 in Austin really hurts their chances of being a big time threat to make a run at a BCS spot… which is why Hawaii is in over them. Unless they pull the upset versus Texas… but we’ll see… thanks for the interest in the poll though

  10. Doc Hancock said

    Do you think Michigan’s Lloyd Carr is on the hot seat? He’s lost five of six to Ohio State, five of his last six bowl games and that’s not a good combination for Michigan fans. He really needs to win the Big Ten to save his job and with everyone in the conference having a somewhat rebuilding year, this might be his best chance with Chad Hemme going into his final year of eligibilty.

  11. Condo said

    You’d tend to think that Carr’s on the hot seat, but I’d say the seat’s more ‘luke warm’ than it is hot… Michigan fans really don’t value the OSU game quite as much as OSU fans do. Although I see your point about him needing to win the Big 10 to really secure his job. They have too much talent this season to just ‘blow it’. If they don’t at the very least win 10 games, Carr’s job could really be in trouble. But personally, Michigan from what I’ve seen over the years doesn’t like to pull the trigger on head coaching changes, and unless Carr really bombs this year, he’s probably safe for at least another year.

  12. Charlie Hustle said

    Michigan fans don’t value the game against OSU as much as Ohio State fans? I don’t know what Michigan fans you hang out with but the guys I went to school with were unapproachable after OSU has been kicking their ass the last few years and there was more than one hole punched in walls.

    Lloyd Carr is on the hot seat not only because he can’t beat Ohio State. He also lost his last 4 bowl games.

    Michigan fans can not only sign a petition to fire Lloyd Carr:
    http://www.petitionspot.com/petitions/firelloydcarr

    … they can also wear a hoodie about firing him:
    http://www.cafepress.com/campaigngear.33750534

    Lloyd Carr is not only on the heat seat, I think it’s just been named the Carr Seat

    — Charlie Hustle

  13. Doc Hancock said

    Carr seat, good one.

  14. Condo said

    Well, I have a buddy who is actually out in Stillwater visiting right now… he’s from Detroit, huge UM fan… he doesn’t seem to think Carr’s on the hot seat this season, however if he loses the bowl game/OSU game this season. Then he will be. That’s his opinion however and that’s sort of what I used to judge Carr’s ‘hot seat’.

    Again, keep in mind Carr’s been there for quite a while and Michigan isn’t one to make drastic changes by firing a coach. Now, we’ll see what happens, but Carr’s a protege of Schembechler and not necessarily loved by the fans, but loved by the UM administration, making it less likely he’ll get canned easily.

  15. Steven said

    Ask Just2Cocky about Carr… he is also from Michigan and that is his 2nd favorite team.

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