What Can We Expect Out of The Upcoming 2016 College Football Season
With National signing day behind us, and spring ball ramping up, the sky is the limit for what is fixing to be one of the best most competitive college football seasons in recent memory. Personally I’m excited to see which teams will rise up, which will fall off, and which teams will capitalize on great recruiting classes and momentum from last season.
University of Michigan
The Wolverines play four road games all season, and only leave the state of Michigan three times. Their three toughest games are all on the road, which will likely be their demise, as they are looking 10-2 dead in the eyes. Jim Harbaugh and his staff are still one more great recruiting class from being legit contenders, though they will contend this year. Ohio State and Michigan State have a more solid framework in place, which will make it difficult on Big Blue as they head on the road to face these teams. Can they win those games? Of course, but they are still a year away from us being able to tie in any expectations of winning the biggest games. Either way by the end of the 2016, Michigan will re-establish themselves as a College Football powerhouse, and the Big Blue nation should have a lot to celebrate with a potential Rose Bowl birth. Harbaugh is not messing around.
With five early enrollees and 18 more coming in the fall, LSU finished right on the heels of Alabama in the recruiting game. Scoring two in-state five star athletes was huge for Les Miles and company, but what is most noteworthy is how little LSU lost last season. Their nucleus on both sides of the ball is intact, and this team was young and deep last season. The youth added to their inexperience, but now they are exponentially bigger, faster and more athletic than they were in 2015. This team is the real deal – and if they can clip Alabama they should represent the SEC in the final four. No disrespect to Ole Miss who had a great recruiting class as well, but was slightly out paced by LSU. This program has partnered an already great team with a very meaty recruiting class.
I like Stanford a lot, but the Trojan football trumped them in the recruiting game. USC is bringing a lot of 4-5 star talent on campus early, but what college football enthusiasts should realize is that USC was able to pluck several players from SEC country out of the southeast and into SoCal. This is not good for the UGAs and UFs of the world, but such as life. This team re-upped in a big way, and if they can’t get by Stanford this year, they will be in a great position to do so next season.
I’m not certain what’s going on in the swamp, but winning their side of the SEC is going to be difficult with the class UGA just pulled. Jim McElwain was great, coaching 90 players that weren’t his to the SEC East Title. I fear a bit of a fall off however, as the Gators are no longer able to draw the best talent in the state which is a problem. I do trust the coaching, and feel as though the program may have to take a step backwards to continue their overhaul before moving forward. This will create quite a pressure cooker for McElwain and company so we’ll see what happens. The Gators go toothless in 2016.
The Ducks took their name literally this recruiting season and ducked away from all major talent in the Northwest. This is going to be a long season for Ducks fan whose program just got out recruited by USC, ASU, Stanford and UCLA. It’s going to Duck hunting season for the rest of the PAC 12.
This team is ready to finish what they started, and this program isn’t going anywhere for the foreseeable future. They will have FSU to contend with on the road, but I’m going with the team that has a Heisman hopeful in DeShaun Watson. Clemson didn’t lose too much, and they loaded up with in-state and out of state talent. The biggest coup was likely Trayvon Martin from Florida, who should come in and start right away as a top 25 prospect at his CB position.
Notre Dame Fighting Irish
With the near impossible schedule Notre Dame has coming up, it would’ve served them better to pull in a bit more talent in recruiting, however they didn’t lose much and with Brian Kelly inked to an extension, these student athletes should be ready to go. If Notre Dame can go into Texas in week 1 and pull out the victory, they should have all the momentum they need to make a run. They get Michigan State at home as well as Stanford, Miami and Virginia Tech, so there are no excuses. A showdown with USC at the end of the season could have NATIONAL CHAMPIONSHIP implications and if they make it this far they will have earned it.
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