The regular season has come to a close in "big time" college ball (the West Point/Navy game notwithstanding) and while there are some good match ups in the FCS ranks, it is pretty much a lock that ND State will take the trophy for that level (although I do like Chattanooga and SHSU). As far as the upper division, well we have pretty much the same type scam that has been run on college football fans (and schools) for years. This newfangled playoff committee has pretty much turned out to be a joke.... No news there...That being said, on to the Pre Bowl College Football Top 25 for the 2014 season...
1. Oregon: Fast. Probably the team to beat.
2. Alabama: Beatable but a dangerous team to anyone
3. FSU: Finds a way to win. There has been a lot of lucky breaks for the 'Noles this year.
4. Baylor: Quite a bit quicker than most but a one loss Big Twelve team won't get any consideration apparently. Did have a very weak non conference slate one has to admit.
5. Ohio State: May (or may not be) deserving of the spot that places them in the college football "playoff." The Bartender Cabbie System would have them on the outside looking in.
6. TCU: Perhaps should have had a bit more consideration. Near loss to the Jayhawks likely hurt their chances.
7. Kansas State: The best three loss team in the country. Can play some good ball.
8. Mississippi State: Dangerous to anyone anytime anywhere.
9. Michigan State: Perhaps, just perhaps, the best squad in the Big Ten not from Ohio.
10. Ole Miss: The Rebs have fallen off lately.
11. Arizona: Better than they showed last week.
12. Georgia Tech: Good ACC team. Very good.
13. Georgia: OK.
14. UCLA: Well coached. Will be a force in the PAC 12 shortly.
15. Arizona State: Graham knows how to win - jerk that he is.
16. Missouri: Odd that they never really did much in the Big Twelve.
17.Auburn: Good SEC team.
18. Arkansas: Arkansas? Yes. Better than their record and moving in the right direction.
19. Boise State: The best of the rather weak Mountain West. Not convinced this is quite as good as the Bronco teams we have seen in the recent past. We will see....
20. Wisconsin: What happened Badgers?
21. Clemson: A decent ACC team. Well coached.
22. LSU: A rebuild season although folks are again calling for Miles' head.
23. Louisville: OK. Petrino does know how to win.
24. Utah: Probably playing above their talent level.
25. Memphis: I would give them consideration over some of the higher profile squads. Coach Fuente has them moving in the right direction certain. Maybe he will stick around?
On the bubble in no particular order
1. Northern Illinois: Best of the MAC
2. Nebraska: Pelini fired? May or may not be a good decision. Let us be honest, Nebraska left the Big Twelve to again become a "major power." Does not seem to be happening in the marginally weaker Big Ten either.
3. Cincinnati: Good AAC team.
4. UCF: Not quite what they were last season but a dangerous squad none the less.
5. Marshall: Could surprise some top 10 squads on a good day. Well coached.
6. USC: Lane gone (inexplicably to Alabama) and that immediately improved the Trojan prospects.
7. Oklahoma: Should be a contender with all that talent. Problem must be coaching. Has to be.
8. Texas: Improving somewhat. Good coach but he might not be a long term fit in Austin. Too early to tell.
9. Texas A&M: Guess young "Johnny Football" was the team last year. Sumlin is a good coach but this is the first season in years that he has not had a stellar college QB going back to his days at UH.
10. Minnesota: Pretty darn good Big Ten team. Nice to see frankly.
11. Duke: Well coached. Not quite last year's squad but a pretty darn good team.
12. WVU: Hope Dana keeps his job. I like him and his hair.
13. Oklahoma State: Maybe. Nice job against the Sooners last week.
14. Colorado State: Commendable season.
15. Air Force: The best of the service schools this season.
16. Georgia Southern: Looked good in their first year in the "big time." Is anyone surprised?
17. East Carolina: Perhaps a bit of a stretch.
18. Stanford: Fell off this season.
19. BYU: One has the feeling that this would have been a top 25 squad had not the top notch QB gone done early.
20: Utah State: Can be a dangerous team. It would be a team I would not schedule if I was looking for a non conference cream puff. Hear that SEC?
21. Louisiana Tech: OK - stretching things a bit. Time to stop.
22. Houston: Really time to put an end to this. Firing the coach was a stupid move on the part of the administration. Stupid. Unless they can get Sumlin or Briles back of course.....Don't go looking for the fired Gator HC. Rumors........
I am looking forward to putting out the Bowl projections here shortly and will even throw in the FCS Championship Game. Picking ND State for that but hoping Chattanooga pulls one out as this is being written to advance and/or SHSU continues to win....
Have a good week and enjoy the games (If you like lower division ball there are some good match ups on tap.)