2010 College Football Predictions

Jan 1, 2010; Pasadena, CA, USA; Ohio State Buckeyes players huddle before the 2010 Rose Bowl against the Oregon Ducks. Photo via Newscom

Conference winners, sleepers, power rankings and one big, fat national championship prediction.


Big Ten

Champion: Ohio State
Yes, it’s true – the Buckeyes need Terrelle Pryor to be more consistent in the passing game this year if they expect to win a national championship. But stop acting like that’s the difference between OSU winning the Big Ten and them turning into Vanderbilt. Choke on this for a second: The Buckeyes return all three leading rushers from 2009 in Pryor, Brandon Saine and Dan Herron, the secondary features three senior NFL prospects, and they own the best defensive end in the nation in Cameron Heyward. Pryor is also coming off a dominating performance against Oregon in the Rose Bowl and reports state that he has committed himself this offseason to being a better teammate. Sorry Buckeye-haters, but the gap between them and Alabama is closer than you think.

Conference Champion Sleeper: Michigan Slate
My biggest concern with the Spartans is that despite pulling off an upset nearly every year, they also manage to lose a game they shouldn’t. But they have a slew of playmakers and plenty of depth on both sides of the ball, plus feature a ton of offensive firepower in Larry Caper, Edwin Baker, Keith Nicol and Mark Dell. Oh, and linebacker Greg Jones is the best defender in the nation. If this team can avoid being tripped up by an inferior opponent, they could easily surprise this season.

Conference Power Ranking: #1 Ohio State, #2 Iowa, #3 Wisconsin, # 4 Penn State, #5 Michigan State, #6 Northwestern, #7 Michigan, #8 Purdue, #9 Illinois, #10 Indiana, #11 Minnesota.

I admit that I had Michigan rated too high when I did my Big Ten preview last week. Having any sort of trust in Rich Rodriguez right now is a dangerous proposition for obvious reasons. Just when you think he’s going to figure things out in Ann Arbor, he makes a decision to muck everything up. Penn State might be ranked a little high given their quarterback concerns. Wisconsin is going to give teams trouble this year and Northwestern is going to be a tough opponent every week as well.

Read the rest of this entry »

Follow the Scores Report editors on Twitter @clevelandteams and @bullzeyedotcom.

2010 Big 12 College Football Preview: Oklahoma reclaims top spot

MIAMI GARDENS, FL - OCTOBER 3:   Quarterback Landry Jones #12 of the Oklahoma Sooners hands the ball off to teammate runningback DeMarco Murray #7 in the first quarter against the Miami Hurricanes on October 3, 2009 at Landshark Stadium in Miami Gardens, Florida. (Photo by Doug Benc/Getty Images)

Here’s a quick and dirty look at how I see things playing out in the Big 12 this season:

#1 Oklahoma
In Sam Bradford, Gerald McCoy, Trent Williams, Jermaine Gresham, Keenan Clayton, Brody Eldridge and Dominique Franks, there’s no doubt that the Sooners lost a ton of talent from last year. However, this season is all about two names: Landry Jones and DeMarco Murray. Jones filled in admirably when Bradford went down last season, throwing 26 touchdown passes and gaining valuable experience throughout the year. Murray’s health history is a major concern, but if he can stay upright he’s scary good. He’s more versatile than Adrian Peterson was in that he can catch the ball out of the backfield or beat teams as a rusher. He’s big, he’s fast and he can get north and south in a hurry. He’s also going to get a ton of opportunities to shine this year as both a runner and a pass-catcher and again, if he can stay healthy he has the ability to be one of the best backs in college football. Defensively, Bob Stoops’ team has good depth and while the loss of McCoy hurts, don’t forget that Jeremy Beal was fifth on the team in tackles last season and first in sacks with 11. The linebacker corps has a chance to be special thanks to redshirt freshman Tom Wort and sophomore Ronnell Lewis. I know many pundits still like Texas in the South, but with Landry, Murray and nine starters returning on offense, I think Oklahoma reclaims the conference this season.

Read the rest of this entry »

No. 24 Missouri falls apart in fourth quarter loss to No. 21 Nebraska

It wasn’t the loss that Missouri suffered on Thursday night to Nebraska that it will be thinking about for the rest of the weekend, but the way it lost.

Up 12-0 heading into the fourth quarter, Missouri watched as Nebraska compiled 27 unanswered points to beat the Tigers 27-12 on a rainy night in Columbia. At one point, the Huskers scored three touchdowns in under four minutes of play.

The issues started for the Tigers early in the fourth when Husker QB Zac Lee hit Niles Paul on a 56-yard touchdown with just under 14 minutes remaining. Up until that point, MIZZOU had done a great job of not allowing Lee to complete anything over the top, but the touchdown completely revitalized Nebraska’s defense, which had been tiring out up until that point.

On the Tigers’ next position, quarterback Blaine Gabbert threw his first interception of the season, which Nebraska turned into points thanks to Paul’s second touchdown in less than a minute. The Huskers failed to convert on the 2-point attempt, but all of a sudden they had a 13-12 lead despite being outplayed for three quarters.

Gabbert was again picked off on the Tigers’ next possession, which led to a Mike McNeill 8-yard touchdown reception to give Nebraska a 20-12 lead. After MIZZOU failed to convert on a 4th and 20 deep inside Nebraska territory, the Huskers took over and added a Roy Helu 5-yard touchdown run to put the game away.

In fairness, the Huskers weren’t completely dominated in the first three quarters of this game. They just couldn’t convert golden opportunities that Gabbert was giving them. On more than a handful of plays, Nebraska defenders had the ball hit them in the chest for what should have been easy interceptions. But give the Husker defense credit – they stepped in the fourth quarter and shut MIZZOU down when it mattered most.

With this win, Nebraska takes a one-game lead over MIZZOU in the Big 12 standings. It’s early, but this loss could come back to haunt Gabbert and the Tigers.

Related Posts