First and foremost welcome to the In The Bleachers blog. If you are visiting us for the first time welcome, but if you are a loyal listener to the In The Bleachers podcast, welcome back! Along with keeping the podcast up to date (starting again in June) this blog will be updated frequently will college football news ranging from recruiting, coaching changes, starting line up projections, and rumors throughout the college football landscape. We all hope that this blog will be a regular stop for all college football fans. So kick back, relax and enjoy what fans just like you have to say about the world of college football.
Unlike last year where we heard all year about USC and Texas, the 2006 college football season is as wide open as ever. You can make an argument for up to 10 teams that could be playing in the “National Title Game” come January. It would really surprise me that when the first preseason polls are released the Texas Longhorns would not be ranked #1. Even without the great Vince Young, the Longhorns are stacked on both sides of the ball from years of top rated recruiting classes. Their toughest game of the year will once again be the Oklahoma Sooners, who are contenders themselves. The Sooners will go as far as Adrian Peterson will take them. Rhett Bomar came on as the season went on last year but he is not enough alone to carry the Sooners to the title.
Who can forget one of the big stories from last season, the reemergence of Notre Dame. The Fighting Irish are lead by Heisman Trophy Candidate Brady Quinn and a defense that hopes to improve from last season but a loss in early games against Georgia Tech, Penn State, and Michigan might have their title hopes over early. Two teams that got better at the end of the season Florida and Florida State should be contenders. Drew Weatherford got better by leaps and bound and had a great Orange Bowl even though they lost to Penn State. Florida’s Chris Leak began to grasp Urban Myers’ offense and has a lot to prove if he wants to live up to his high expectations. Both teams are serious contenders.
In probably the most impressive victory of the bowl season, the LSU Tigers completely embarrassed the Miami Hurricanes in the Peach Bowl. They were one win away from playing in a BCS Bowl but they will have to figure out their QB situation in the first few games to give the team some stability at that position. My final few teams that could make a National Title run are West Virginia, Ohio State, and USC. Yeah let’s not forget about those Trojans. They might have lost Bush and Leinart, but Pete Carroll has the players to reload and make another run. This is all for today. Keep posted for more predictions.