February 13, 2010

Which top-10 team has the most questions?

At the College Football Roundtable each week, we ask each member of the coverage staff for his opinion about a topic in the sport. We have two questions this week -- one today and one Sunday.

Rivals.com released its latest preseason top 25 on Thursday. Which top-10 team do you have the most questions about?

Olin Buchanan's answer:
Ranking Iowa in the top 10 makes sense, but I still have questions about the Hawkeyes. Last season, four of their wins were by three or fewer points -- and that wasn't always against the strongest competition. Some major holes (Bryan Bulaga) must be filled in the offensive line, and the defense will miss Pat Angerer and Amari Spievey. I love the receivers, but Ricky Stanzi has to reduce his interceptions.

Tom Dienhart's answer:
I have concerns about Virginia Tech because the Hokies will be working with rebuilt lines on both sides of the ball. I know Tech deserves the benefit of the doubt. Still, if the offensive line doesn't solidify quickly, it could hamper the considerable talents of Darren Evans and Ryan Williams, as well as quarterback Tyrod Taylor. And it won't matter how good the back seven on defense is if the line can't hold up.

David Fox's answer:
Nebraska at No. 5 is a reach for me, mainly because I had trouble distinguishing between the Huskers, Texas and Oklahoma as the top team in the Big 12. Nebraska probably was third on my list. The defense will be good, but will it be better without Ndamukong Suh? I doubt it. And where's the offense that makes this a top-five team? Remember, this is a team that lost 9-7 at home to Iowa State. Either Zac Lee or Cody Green needs to become a legitimate Big 12 quarterback. Running back Rex Burkhead needs to build on his momentum from the end of the season before the Huskers move into the top 10, much less the top five.

Mike Huguenin's answer:
I have questions about a few in the top 10, but the biggest is about Nebraska. I'm not near convinced Nebraska will be a top-10 team, much less a top-five squad. I think the Huskers win the Big 12 North, but, frankly, that's not saying much. I know Oklahoma and Texas -- the other perceived top teams in the Big 12 -- have questions, but so do the Huskers. There's no way the defense will be better, given what the Huskers lost on that side of the ball. You'd think the offense would be better -- but how much better? Is there a legitimate Big 12 quarterback on the roster? If so, that person certainly hasn't shown it yet. Bo Pelini has the Huskers on the "up" escalator, but they're not at the top floor yet.

Steve Megargee's answer:
My biggest questions surround Virginia Tech, if for no other reason than they're playing in such a loaded division. Ryan Williams, Darren Evans and Tyrod Taylor should give the Hokies a potent rushing attack. And even though the Hokies have several holes to fill on defense, Virginia Tech's track record under coordinator Bud Foster suggests the Hokies should at least be good on that side of the ball. But I don't know if they're that much better than ACC Coastal Division rivals North Carolina, Miami and Georgia Tech. I could imagine Virginia Tech finishing in the top 10 in the nation, but I also could envision them finishing as low as fourth in their division. I also don't think moving the Boise State-Virginia Tech game to Labor Day does the Hokies any favors. Virginia Tech has struggled early in the season the past few years, and the Hokies don't have as many returning starters as Boise State. I'd like Virginia Tech's chances in that game if they played it in October. Moving it to the first week of the season gives Boise State a much better shot.


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