So, with the season approaching, I thought I'd put my thoughts on the conference champs, disappointments, surprise teams, and the big OOC losses for each conference.
First, I think this is a pretty good football league this year and it has a good future. DickRod, Dantonio, and Bielema will give Ohio State some decent competition in the coming years.
Winner--anOSU. Although I see a loss at USC, Ohio State is loaded and a legit top 3-5 team. I expect them to run the table outside of that one loss and to possibly beat an SEC team in the Rose if USC makes it to Miami.
Disappointment--Penn State. I would put Illinois here, but I don't think much is expected of the Zookers. Losing Lee and the two DT recently suspended is never a good thing for a team. Even with what should be a great OL, this team will fail to live up to expectations.
Surprise--Michigan State. I'll admit it, I'm a big Dantonio supporter. He's following Saban's career arch there and I've got them upsetting Cal and making it to the Outback.
Big OOC losses--Wisconsin/Fresno; Iowa/Pitt; Illinois/Mizzou
I must admit, I don't think I have a good handle on this league at all, but here goes. This league used to feature strong defenses across the board. Now it looks like the 90s Pac10.
Winner--Oklahoma. I just don't buy into anyone else's defense and Bradford makes few mistakes.
Disappointment--Kansas. They'll lose at least 5. Trips to USF and OU will be tough, Texas, Texas Tech, and Mizzou will all be favored, and I think Colorado will upset them as well.
Surprise--Colorado. Along with Nebraska, Colorado dominated the last few years of the Big8, but has been hit or miss (mostly miss) since the conference expanded. Hawkins is a nut, but he's bringing in some good talent and Colorado was close in several losses last year. I think they'll take the next step and will be a very solid team by the time we go out to meet them in 2010.
Big OOC losses--Nebraska/VaTech; Kansas/USF; Kansas State/Louisville; A&M/Miami
This league has turned into a joke, but with Davis at UNC, Johnson at Tech, Shannon at Miami, and O'Brien at NC State, they are on the upswing.
Winner--Clemson. They may go undefeated since they miss both VaTech and UNC, but I think one of Wake, BC, FSU or USC#2 will trip them up.
Disappointment--Boston College. Tough to find a disappointment in a league where no one's expected to do much, but I'll go with BC since I expect them to lose 6 during the regular season.
Surprise--North Carolina. Davis is a heck of a college football coach and he's bringing UNC up on the national stage quickly. I think they'll beat Rutgers and ND OOC and will win the Coastal.
Big OOC losses--FSU/Colorado; Wake/Ole Miss; BC/ND
I'll fill in the rest later. Hopefully these won't embarrass me in December.
What are you expecting this year?