|2011-12 College Football Picks & Predictions: Who will win the BCS Title?|
|Written by Anthony Rome|
|Saturday, 06 August 2011 13:10|
2011-12 College Football Predictions
(The Spread) – Who will take on the 2012 BCS Championship? We take a crack at predicting how the 2011-12 college football season will play out.
ACC Prediction: Florida State
EJ Manuel takes over for Christian Ponder and thanks to a steady improvements virtually every season, the Seminoles’ offensive line is now a strength. The defense will bring speed and star power to the field and while Virginia Tech should once again prove tough, FSU should finally take its place atop the ACC again.
Big 12 Prediction: Oklahoma
The Sooners are favored to win this year’s BCS title and will get no argument from us. While it’s always tough to be the preseason favorite, Oklahoma is chockfull of talent on both sides of the ball and has a legit Heisman candidate at quarterback in Landry Jones. Thanks to the return of Ryan Broyles and linebacker Travis Lewis, the Sooners had virtually zero holes to fill in the offseason. Texas A&M and Oklahoma State will prove to be OU’s stiffest competition, but the Sooners are primed for big things in 2011.
Pac-12 Prediction: Oregon
We’ll pick the Ducks but it was admittedly a tough decision between Oregon. In the end, the Ducks’ offense is just too explosive to pick against and while LSU won’t be a picnic in Week 1, everyone knows by now that if you’re going to lose, make sure it’s early in the season. Stanford owns the best quarterback in the nation in Andrew Luck, but the departure of Jim Harbaugh (49ers) brings with it a lot of question marks. Still, we wouldn’t be surprised to see the Ducks upended, especially with teams like the Cardinal, LSU and Arizona on their road schedule.
SEC Prediction: LSU
This was a tough call as well, as anyone could make a case for Alabama to take home the SEC West title. But outside of their questions at quarterback, the Tigers are loaded at virtually every other position and if they can get consistent play out of either Jordan Jefferson or Zach Mettenberger, LSU will be a BCS title contender in 2011-12. The fact that they return seven starters on defense is one of the biggest reasons to like the Tigers this season. (The other reason is that the SEC East is about as weak as its ever been, so winning the SEC title game shouldn’t be too difficult for whomever emerges out of the West.)
Big Ten: Nebraska
With Ohio State set to muddle through its own personnel hell, the Big Ten should come down between new addition Nebraska and No. 10 Wisconsin. The difference, in my eyes, is that Nebraska returns plenty of talent to a defensive unit that yielded just 17.4 points and 306.8 yards per game last season and the Badgers have questions at quarterback. Plus, with Iowa and Michigan State expected to take a step back this season, the Huskers may have an easier go of things in the Legends Division than Wisconsin will have in the Leaders.
Big East: South Florida
Take your pick between USF, West Virginia and PITT. Many college football pundits are rolling with the Mountaineers this year, but I expect BJ Daniels to take the next step for the Bulls and the addition of former Colorado Buffalo Darrell Scott to prove that Boulder just wasn’t a great fit. Granted, the hiring of Dana Holgerson will elevate WVU’s offense, but the program lost a lot of talent from last year’s outstanding defense. As for PITT, the Panthers’ D should be solid once again but the offense will suffer plenty of growing pains with quarterback Tino Sunseri.
2012 BCS Title Prediction: Oklahoma over LSU
It’s way too early to be making predictions – in fact, it would be way too early to make predictions two months from now. But this is mostly for fun and is a nice preview of the upcoming season, so we’ll take a shot with Oklahoma and LSU. The Sooners will have a bulls-eye on their backs all season, which will be difficult but they have the most talent in the nation and outside of Andrew Luck, the best quarterback in the country. LSU doesn’t have the same fortunate at quarterback, which is why most people will stay away from the Tigers this season. But their defense is damn good and if Jordan Jefferson could just avoid mistakes, LSU has proven it can run a tough SEC gauntlet before. Even if the Tigers lose to Oregon in Week 1, as long as they run the tables the rest of the way (‘Bama will of course be tough), they’ll have a shot to reach the title game. And hey, beat the Ducks earlier on and the sky’s the limit.