Preseason rankings in college football, a sport with so much turnover, is a fool’s errand. So certainly don’t bookmark this, tuck this away, and pull it back out in December to laugh at me. Trust me I will be doing that on my own.
That doesn’t make it any less fun though. Let’s wildly speculate how Ole Miss’ offseason affects 2017, or who will emerge from the East and make a futile attempt at knocking off Alabama. Fully aware of how bad this will look in a couple of months, let’s power rank friends.
The Commodores are starting last but I don’t think they’ll finish here. Derek Mason seems to have some real positive momentum going with this program.
13. South Carolina
There’s Jake Bentley and a whole mess of seniors on the defense, so that’s reason to be optimistic. How much can Bentley create without much help though?
12. Ole Miss
I have no idea what to do with you Ole Miss. Sure the offseason drama creates a lot of issues and there is no way Matt Luke matches what Hugh Freeze did. But that talent still is there man. I don’t know.
11. Mississippi State
Nick Fitzgerald is pretty awesome. Outside of that? The Bulldogs are going to be overmatched in a lot of SEC games this year.
Is there an SEC team who has gotten less national attention? Even Derek Mason and Vanderbilt have gotten some people talking. They’ll be in the fight or a bowl this year.
I want to love you this season Kentucky. Neither Florida or Georgia have the division by a strangle hold this year and y’all have some talent. Please be fun and make things interesting this year.
8. Texas A&M
Kevin Sumlin doesn’t know who his starting QB will be yet, or at least the media doesn’t know. Seems problematic when going on the road to face a Power 5 team.
This team could be awesome or they could have a big struggle this season. So right in the middle seems about right. Austin Allen gives them the nod over other teams who don’t have as quality quarterback play.
The defending champions of life are back to defend their title and have a weird opener against Georgia Tech’s triple option. Life without Alvin Kamara and Josh Dobbs could prove to be difficult as well, but a lot of home games in the first half of the year should help with that.
A tough game against Michigan got even tougher with their suspensions. How quickly Malik Zaire gets in a rhythm, or if he does at all, has a big impact on their year.
Jacob Eason is back for his second year. Nick Chubb is back for his tenth. And there is plenty of experience in the trenches. They get the edge over Florida for top team in the eastern division.
LSU is in a battle with Auburn for second in the West, and Auburn gets the advantage due to the quarterback situation and just gauging how much I trust each coach. They should be the second most talented team in the conference.
This year sets up for Auburn really well if Jared Stidham is as advertised. They’ve still got Kamryn Pettway, three seniors on the offensive line, and experienced linebackers. They should run off some wins early in the year to set up for some big games in the second half.