Tom’s Top 25, 2010 Edition

Every year at this time, our sports department steps front-and-center to trumpet its picks for college football glory.  This is a topic of interest to, oh, three or four visitors to this site; for the rest of you, be patient — our usual stew of offbeat subject matter will return soon.

So with that stirring preamble out of the way, let’s get right to the predictions, along with an occasional rationalization for these choices:

1.  Alabama     The 2009 national champion brings back an excellent offense.  The question mark is the defense, which lost nine starters.

2.  Boise State     Twenty-two starters return, and they went 14-0 last year.

3.  Texas Christian     The Horned Frogs won 11 in ’08, 12 last year.  Could it be 13 victories this season?

4.  Ohio State

5.  Nebraska

6.  Florida     Tim Tebow’s departure did not leave the Gators helpless.

7.  Wisconsin     Standout RB John Clay and the entire offensive line returns.

8.  Virginia Tech     The Hokies have reached double digits in victories every season since 2004.

9.  Texas

10. Miami (FL)

11. Iowa     The schedule is favorable:  toughest games are at home.

12. Oregon     Some team from the mediocre Pac-10 gets a BCS bowl; Ducks figure to be it.

13. Auburn

14. Oklahoma

15. Florida State     New coach Jimbo Fisher invigorates the program.

16. Pittsburgh

17. Penn State

18. Houston     QB Case Keenum threw for over three miles last season (5,671 yards).  He’s back, along with eight other offensive starters from ’09.  We won’t talk about the Cougars’ defense.

19. Georgia

20. Oregon State

21. Utah     Utes have nonconference games vs. Pittsburgh and Notre Dame to prove they belong with the big boys.

22. Georgia Tech 

23. West Virginia

24. Central Florida     Defense will be outstanding; can the Knights’ offense score enough to win?

25. Navy     A second consecutive 10-win season is an achievable goal for the Midshipmen.

You may have reason to disagree with some of these choices, and you’re probably right.  Bear in mind, though, that these selections were not made frivolously, but after several minutes of research.  And what usually happens is that my choices — wrong though they may be — won’t be that different from those of “experts” who actually get paid to do this.  Yep, we’re all just guessing, aren’t we?

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3 responses to “Tom’s Top 25, 2010 Edition

  1. The final Associated Press poll, published after the BCS Championship game, had Auburn 1st, TCU 2nd, and Oregon 3rd. I had picked Wisconsin to finish 7th, and that’s exactly where they landed. Alabama, my preseason #1, wound up 10th.

    Ohio State was 4th in my preseason picks; they disappointed me by finishing 5th in the AP poll. I was proud that University of Central Florida, which was ignored by everyone else in the preseason, came in 21st in the final poll, even better than I had predicted!

    We won’t talk about Florida, Texas, or Miami.

  2. Just to tidy up a little more… Boise State finished 9th in the final AP poll; Virginia Tech was 16th.

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