On September 7 2011 on this blog, I said the following:
The SEC – This is the year the SEC will cannibalize itself and be without a team in the BCS title game. Yes, LSU looked awesome against Oregon, and the Tide is rolling again this year, and South Carolina is playing with both talent and grit this season, and Arkansas is solid, and Florida is going to scare some people, and Tennessee has a passing game you can’t ignore, blah, blah, blah. That’s the problem. An SEC schedule is more of a gauntlet this year than the last six years.
I give you the world’s worst prediction for this past college football season. As we all know, the BCS title game (which is a national championship in name only because there is no playoff… but I digress) included not one but two SEC teams. And Florida only scared Florida fans this year. And Tennessee’s passing game folded when they lost their top receiver and quarterback to injury. I was right about South Carolina and Arkansas, but who wasn’t?
BTW – I had Oklahoma and Wisconsin in the BCS title game. Both teams finished with three losses.
In the interest of full disclosure, here’s how I saw the top ten at the beginning of the year:
- LSU – But it won’t last. (I was right and wrong about this. I didn’t expect them to make the title game. They ended the year at number two.)
- Wisconsin – This is the team that impressed me most. The offense is clicking and the defense is scary good. (Fell to number ten.)
- Oklahoma – The Big 12 (which only has 9.5 teams) is in disarray this year. The Sooners stand to benefit the most from all the turmoil. (Finished the year at number sixteen.)
- Boise State – Kellen Moore should win the Heisman, but he probably won’t. Why? Rumor has it he’ll be on the cover of Sports Illustrated this week. Damn you SI! (Lost a game they should have won and finished at number eight.)
- Stanford – The LSU game unveiled some major weaknesses in Oregon’s defense and running game. In turn, they exposed the PAC 12’s weakness, their teams. Stanford has Luck. Luck has the talent to carry the team through the less than stellar conference. (Made it through the regular season with one loss, but the loss was a thumping by Oregon. Finished number seven.)
- Alabama – They have a new quarterback, but in an Alabama system, QB’s are required to play smart not lights out. As long as the guy behind center doesn’t make a lot of mistakes, the Tide will stay in the hunt. (Number one in our hearts (unless you’re an Oklahoma State fan) and minds. Your mythical national champions.)
- Texas A&M – Never discount a team with talent and a chip on their shoulder. The coaching staff has an “us against the world” card to play all year. That kind of thing works in college football. (I really missed the boat here. Texas A&M finished with six losses and nowhere near the top twenty-five.)
- South Carolina – I think Spurrier is inside Garcia’s head. He knows just how to pull the kid’s strings, and turn him into a spirited leader. The Gamecocks are not a team you want on your schedule this year, and it’s not just because of their semi-phallic name. They have an offense that can score at will. (I came close on this one. They finished at number 9, and Spurrier got inside Garcia’s head and sucked out his brains.)
- Virginia Tech – The ACC doesn’t have much to talk about beyond Maryland’s new uniforms. The Hokies have the potential to dominate the conference. (Va. Tech got hammered twice by a Clemson team that gave up 70 points to West Virginia in the Orange Bowl. Yikes! They finished number 21 with three losses.)
- Houston – I know. I know. Houston? But, they beat a major conference (albeit weak conference) opponent, and they have a cake schedule ahead of them. They could be this year’s TCU and bring in an undefeated record come bowl season. (If not for Southern Miss, I would have been right about this one. They beat a Penn State team that should have declined a bowl bid given their situation, but it was an impressive win nonetheless. They finished 13-1 and at number eighteen.)