FanPost

IrishColts17's 2013 CFB Preview

While reading through the various CFB Preview magazines recently, I decided it would be fun to make my own preview. I’ll just run through a few of the basics. It should be interesting to go back at the end of the season and see how I did. Feel free to tell me where you agree and disagree.

Contents:
Top 25
BCS Bowl Projections
Top 10 Heisman Contenders
Ranking Notre Dame’s Schedule
Notre Dame’s Top 25 Players
10 Quick Thoughts…

Top 25


1. Alabama
You expected someone else? If you want to know more about them, just go to ESPN.com. Or CBSSports.com, FOXSports.com, Sports.Yahoo.com, or…you get the point.
2. Stanford
They might have the best defense in the country. Their offense will be better than expected. I think they’re this year’s 2012 Irish.
3. Georgia
Who’s going to stop this offense? Their defense will take a step back, but they should be able to outscore the majority of their opponents.
4. Ohio State
That schedule…holy crap. If they can stay focused, they have a legit shot to be in the National Championship. I think they’ll find one of their patented crap the bed losses.
5. Oregon
That offense will be freaky good again. I think Stanford will be the only team to slow it down enough for a win.
6. Louisville
They’re a hard one to place. They will most likely finish either higher or lower than this, depending on whether or not they can go undefeated. Call this the middle ground.
7. Clemson
Tajh Boyd might be the best QB in the country. Sammy Watkins should bounce back. Their defense could take a step forward, too.
8. Texas A&M
Most people have them higher, but they’re going to have an awful lot of revenge coming their way. Johnny Manziel should be good enough to overcome most of it. I think he’ll take a step backward from last year, though.
9. South Carolina
All they did last year was go 11-2, and they’re a good bet to be just as good this year. Their schedule should help; they miss Alabama, Texas A&M, and LSU.
10. Notre Dame
That dominant defense isn’t going anywhere. Reesball should get them into a BCS bowl. Look for DaVaris Daniels and TJ Jones to have big seasons as his favorite targets.
11. LSU
A year ago, they were the consensus favorites to win it all. They lose quite a bit on defense, but they should be able to reload just fine.
12. Florida State
They might be a year away, but they’re still going to be dangerous this year. I think Jameis Winston is going to be the real deal.
13. TCU
The Big 12 is pretty much wide open. TCU has the best defense, and their offense should be pretty good with Casey Pachall back at QB.
14. Florida
Their defense carried them last year. I see the D taking a small step back, but I think Jeff Driskel will lead an improved offense.
15. Michigan
Devin Gardner should have a good year as a full-time starter. The defense is still a year away and needs to improve for them to make a BCS Bowl.
16. Oklahoma
Count me as one of the Blake Bell believers. OU’s offense should be fine this season. Their defense, however, should be somewhere between average and horrible.
17. Texas
The Horns return most of their starters from least season’s 9-4 team. They have the talent to contend for the Big 12 title, but I think they will lose a few close ones.
18. Nebraska
Taylor Martinez returns for his 27th season as the Huskers’ starting QB. The program seems to be stuck in neutral. Another 3 or 4 loss season would surprise absolutely no one.
19. Baylor
They have fundamentals! They should continue lighting up the scoreboard, and their defense should improve, but consistency could be an issue.
20. Boise State
Chris Peterson could probably have any job in the country. If there’s an example of putting faith in a team based on their head coach, it’s Boise. Joe Southwick should step up and have a decent year. Matt Miller is a very solid receiver.
21. USC
The Trojans are too talented to have another 6 loss season. Whoever wins the QB battle will have some awesome weapons at his disposal. I think Kiffin will win just enough to keep his job. We can only hope…lol.
22. Miami
The Hurricanes return a number of impact players, including QB Stephen Morris and RB Duke Johnson. They won’t be good enough to win the ACC, but they will be exciting to watch.
23. Oklahoma State
I’m a little lower on the Cowboys than most people. Their lineup just doesn’t quite strike me as Big 12 Champion material. They will definitely be a tough out, though.
24. UCLA
Jim Mora seems to have the program rolling in the right direction. Brett Hundley will be a difference maker at QB. We’ve spent enough time on UCLA recently…moving on…
25. Michigan State
Notre Dame was the only team to beat MSU by more than 4 points last season. The defense is very stout, and the ball should bounce their way a few more times on offense this year.
Last 5 Out: Arizona State, Kansas State, Northern Illinois, Penn State, Wisconsin

BCS Bowl Projections


BCS National Championship
Alabama vs. Stanford

Rose Bowl
Ohio State vs. Oregon

Fiesta Bowl
TCU vs. Louisville

Sugar Bowl
Georgia vs. Florida State

Orange Bowl
Clemson vs. Notre Dame

Top 10 Heisman Contenders


1. Braxton Miller
2. Tajh Boyd
3. Teddy Bridgewater
4. Aaron Murray
5. Jadeveon Clowney
6. Johnny Manziel
7. Marcus Mariota
8. AJ McCarron
9. T.J. Yeldon
10. Sammy Watkins

Ranking Notre Dame’s Schedule

This is how I see the schedule from most difficult to win to least difficult.
1. at Stanford
2. at Michigan
3. USC
4. Oklahoma
5. Michigan State
6. vs. Arizona State
7. BYU
8. at Pittsburgh
9. at Purdue
10. Navy
11. at Air Force
12. Temple

Notre Dame’s Top 25 Players

(expected productivity in 2013)

1. Stephon Tuitt
2. Louis Nix III
3. Zach Martin
4. Prince Shembo
5. Bennett Jackson
6. Chris Watt
7. DaVaris Daniels
8. George Atkinson III
9. Jarrett Grace
10. TJ Jones
11. Sheldon Day
12. Tommy Rees
13. Keivarae Russell
14. Christian Lombard
15. Troy Niklas
16. Danny Spond
17. Amir Carlisle
18. Dan Fox
19. Kyle Brindza
20. Matthias Farley
21. Ishaq Williams
22. Carlo Calabrese
23. Elijah Shumate
24. Greg Bryant
25. Cam McDaniel

10 Quick Thoughts…

1. Indiana will make a bowl game.
2. Johnny Manziel will NOT be a Heisman finalist.
3. Penn State will be just as good or better than last year.
4. Tommy Rees will surpass expectations.
5. November 30 will be an amazing day. (ND/Stanford and Clemson/South Carolina)
6. GA3 will make you jump out of your chair and yell for joy at least 10 times.
7. GA3 will make you jump out of your chair and yell in disgust at least 10 times.
8. Fox Sports 1 will put a dent in the number of hours you watch ESPN.
9. The Denver Broncos will win Super Bowl XLVIII.
10. The Indiana Pacers will win the 2014 NBA Championship.

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