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Cloudy Crystal Ball

My research is not complete but the season starts tomorrow. It's time for some wildly off the mark predictions and prognostications.

Conference Winners
ACC--Florida State: It pains me to write that. Florida State catches Miami without a running back or their top WR. If the Seminoles can survive on Monday night and survive Jeff Bowden's lack of creative play calling, they should have no trouble winning the ACC title for a second year in a row. They have eight homes games. Their most difficult road trip might be to Maryland. Not too intimidating.

Big East--Louisville: Brian Brohm is back to lead one of the most dangerous offenses. Michael Bush is back as well. The Cardinals draw Miami and West Virginia at home. They have won 20 games over the last two years. 11-1 is within reach.

Big Ten--Ohio State: They might stumble in Austin but that will be it. Troy Smith, Antonio Pittman, and Ted Ginn should be able to outscore every team not in the Pac 10. Losing nine starters on defense is a glaring problem but not a fatal one. The Buckeyes have to travel to Iowa but get Michigan and Penn State at home. Again, 11-1 is the prediction.

Big 12--Texas: And not just because this is a Texas blog. The Horns easily have the most talent in the league. Last year was about VY and the offense. This year will obviously be about the defense. The schedule is no cupcake city though. We survive OSU and the Sooners but fall once in the second half of the season on the road, either in Lincoln or Lubbock.

Pac 10--USC: This one is heavily based on schedule. 2006 should be the year for Oregon or Cal to wrestle the title away from the Trojans. But their schedules are too tough in comparison. USC draws Nebraska, Cal, and Notre Dame at home. They could easily falter at Washington State or at Oregon State but it won't matter if they beat Cal.

SEC--Auburn: This one is also based on schedule. LSU, Georgia, and maybe even Florida all deserve consideration in the most wide open of any major conference race. The Tigers have Brandon Roy and Kenny Irons leading a balanced offensive attack and a solid defense led by LB Will Herring. The Tigers luck out with LSU, Florida, and Georgia all coming to visit. The have two road games of concern: South Carolina and Alabama. Going undefeated in the SEC will be remarkable.

Other Predictions
*Troy Smith will win the Heisman trophy. Other finalists: Marshawn Lynch, Kenny Irons, and Brady Quinn.

*Lou Holtz will continue to embarrass himself on national TV for one more season before ESPN finally pulls the plug.

*Only one team will go undefeated, while at least four will be 11 or 12 - 1.

*Notre Dame will lose to Michigan and USC and barely be left out of the BCS.

*Cal, TCU, Miami, and another SEC team (probably LSU) will join the BCS party.

*Fox's telecasts of the BCS bowls will be left on mute by millions.

*Auburn will beat Ohio State for the national title and Tommy Tuberville will be the 2006 version of Mack Brown.

Where did I go wrong?

--AW--