The coaches poll was released this past week and the SEC had seven teams in the Top 25. LSU narrowlyedged Alabama for the top spot with USC sitting in third. The Trojans are loadedon offense and added Penn State running back Silas Redd. This season could comedown to three games. Alabama at LSU, Oregon at USC and Oregon vs. USC part twoin the PAC 12 title game. The Trojansand Ducks have schedules that seem to fit a double dip between those twoexplosive offenses. As a matter of fact theSEC versus the PAC 12 is the only title game we have not seen in the BCS Era. Sowhy not this year?Look at November 3rd asa potential semifinal Saturday Alabama at LSU and Oregon at USCHow many teams have alegit shot at a National Title? The answer is everyone has some sort of shot, buthere is my Baker's Dozen with a real shot to be in Miami.LSU- Must have aconsistent passing game. They are good enough to line up and run to win ten gameswith little resistance but a road trip to top ten defense Florida plus Alabamacould expose the passing game. The SEC title game is another game they have toprove they can throw.USC- The schedule setsup good but as I mentioned before you could be looking at a couple of USC versusOregon games. USC under Pete Carroll (Kiffins mentor) always seem to lose onegame they shouldn't the last five years of his dominance. Under the BCS formulathe next two years those missteps cannothappen.Alabama- the Tide havethe talent on defense but can they replace the leadership? We have talked aboutspecial teams a lot and it most games that won't matter either. But what if thenation's best offensive line cannot keep McCarron healthy or what if he getshurt? That could be the only thing keeping Bama from Miami.Oregon- The Ducks couldbe number one in the country by November with the way their schedule sets up.They will be playing with house money in the Coliseum November 3rd and likelywill get a second shot at the Trojans.Oklahoma- Bob Stoopsalways has his team in the mix but they just can't seem to run the table. LandryJones must prove he can get it done without Ryan Broyles. They dont have aconference title game which makes it a three game season for the Sooners. (Texas, OklSt. WVU)Georgia- If the Dogs cansurvive the suspensions they get South Carolina in October which may bode wellfor them. The defense will be outstanding, but can Aaron Murray takes thenext step and keeps his interceptions down. South Carolina- MarcusLattimore is the key for the Gamecocks and Steve Spurrier is not afraid to workhim. They have two of the best defensive ends in the country and if they beatGeorgia they must find a way to finally beat Arkansas.West Virginia- I thinkthey gave a real shot at running the table. First of all they finally have somenormalcy in Morgantown as 2nd year coach Dana Holgorsen has settled in. Theirquarterback Genocide Smith will be better in 2012 than he was in 2011. Hugegame versus Oklahoma in Morgantown could vault the Mountaineers to Miami again.Florida State- JimboFisher cannot lose games he is supposed to win and defend the home turf of DoakCampbell Stadium. If he can do that he will have two games @NC State and @Virginia Tech that could determine how big this season can be. The defense willbe title worthy but can they run the football?Arkansas- This willeither be a magical season or one of great disappointment for the Hogs. WithBobby Petrino the ceiling was high and the low was 10-2. With John L Smith theceiling is still high, but the Hogs could come unglued and go as low as 7-5.Leadership will be the key.Wisconsin- The Badgersare the most consistent program in the Big Ten and although Montee Ball won'tbe ready for the start of practice he will become the regular season. They havethe easiest route to an undefeated season. They only have to navigate Lincoln,Nebraska and defend their home turf to get to a Big Ten Title game unbeaten.Michigan- I think theWolverines can get there with some help even if they lose to Alabama. BradyHoke's team may not be strong enough on the front, but if they run the tableafter losing to Alabama and knock off an unbeaten Wisconsin they could end upin Miami. If they upset Alabama, then Miami is a real possibility in January.Clemson- This is a longshot because they likely lose to Auburn without Sammy Watkins. They have asmuch talent as FSU and the ACC is easier to navigate than the other Big Fourconferences. I like their quarterback, running back, receiver (when he's nitsuspended) and the hire of Brent Venables. Much like Michigan. if they cansteal the opener versus Auburn they have a real shot to make some noise.
Polls are out, who has the best shot at the title?
August 5, 2012, 3:53 pm