My 2023 Playoff picks: Who makes the last field of 4?
In my opinion, May is the best time to bust out some Playoff picks.
I like to be on record before anyone else is, and I like to do so once we know what rosters will look like once the post-spring transfer portal window closes. In August, it’s too easy to talk yourself out of teams for silly reasons. Like, too many people are picking “team X” and I want to be different.
Like all predictions, there is a bit of creativity that’s required. If you were going into 2019 predicting a Playoff field of Alabama, Ohio State, Clemson and Oklahoma, you were told to pack up your things and leave the conversation because you were too boring.
(Go figure that picking Oklahoma now would actually be a bold move, and maybe you could say the same about Clemson after consecutive years of missing the field.)
It’s OK to be a little creative with a Playoff pick. Sometimes it hits like when I had Cincinnati in the field 2 years ago. Other times, it misses like when I had Utah in the field last year. History says you’ve gotta take at least 1 swing when it comes to predicting the Playoff field.
As for picking a national championship matchup? That’s a different story. A team like TCU breaking through as an unranked team to start the year was unprecedented in the Playoff era.
Speaking of unprecedented, we’re also a year away from the field expanding to 12. In other words, this could be the last year in which it really makes sense to offer up a Playoff prediction. Once the field expands, I imagine it’ll be a condensed version of March Madness and we’ll all fill out Playoff brackets.
So here’s my last field of 4 Playoff prediction:
We live in a world in which there could be 3-4 legitimate Playoff contenders out of the Pac-12. Stunning, I know. Washington, USC, Oregon and Utah could all start off as top-10 teams with veteran, elite starting quarterbacks. That’s not including possible preseason Top 25 team Oregon State fresh off its best season in 2 decades and the wild card that is Deion Sanders’ Colorado squad. It’s possible that leads to a very Pac-12 ending wherein the conference fails to produce a 1-loss team and it gets left out of the field for the 7th consecutive year.
But I’ll go with Washington, who has some very 2022 TCU vibes with all the upperclassmen who returned instead of leaving for the NFL. The Huskies didn’t have a single player drafted from a team who finished No. 8 in the AP Poll having won its final 7 games after a pair of 1-possession losses on the road.
Unlike TCU, though, Washington has year-to-year continuity with the coaching staff — keeping play-caller Ryan Grubb instead of letting Nick Saban poach him was huge for Kalen DeBoer — and it has an established star quarterback in Michael Penix Jr. The Huskies have 3 starters to replace on the offensive line, but they return a bevy of skill-players, including preseason All-American receiver in Rome Odunze.
The defense has to improve somewhat, and it should in Year 2 of the scheme with 73% of last year’s production back. But you can be mediocre on defense and make the Playoff. Oklahoma showed us that on almost a yearly basis in the 2010s.
The schedule also sets up extremely well. USC and Oregon State are Washington’s lone road games against teams who played in a bowl last year. The Huskies can split those and win the Pac-12 en route to the field and become the conference’s first Playoff team since … 2016 Washington.
Dabo Swinney made 2 moves that changed my projection of Clemson entering 2023. The first was moving on from DJ Uiagalelei and letting Cade Klubnik spin it. The second, of course, was going outside of the family and poaching Broyles Award winner Garrett Riley from runner-up TCU to run the offense. That was a championship-level move that could very well be the difference in whether Clemson ends its Playoff drought (2 years has to feel like an eternity these days).
While I’m not necessarily sold on Klubnik being the second coming of Trevor Lawrence, I am sold on this Clemson offense soaring into one of the 10 best groups in America. I love Will Shipley’s potential in a less predictable offense, and I wouldn’t be surprised if he finished the year as the clear best back in the nation. Clemson returns 4 of 5 starters on the offensive line, and only 1 player on that side of the ball was selected in the NFL Draft.
Defensively, there’s a ton to replace on the defensive line. Not having Brent Venables as the guy to do that reloading is daunting, but at the same time, we’re talking about a group who ranked in the top 25 in scoring who also ranks in the top 25 in percentage of returning defensive production.
Let’s also not forget that despite the duds against South Carolina and Tennessee to close the season, Clemson still went 8-0 against the ACC last year and it rolled in the ACC Championship. That was in a down year. Yes, the Notre Dame loss was technically a nonconference game, but the Irish come to Death Valley this year. That’s still a place where the Tigers have lost just once in the last 6 seasons (2022 South Carolina).
It’s worth noting that the ACC is now division-less, so even if Clemson loses to Florida State for the first time since Jameis Winston was in Tallahassee, the Tigers can get redemption in the conference title game. That schedule shouldn’t scare you. Any Playoff team should have to go on the road and beat frisky teams like Duke and South Carolina. Even if the defense takes a slight step back, I still like the potential offensive progression fueling Clemson’s first Playoff berth since 2020.
2. Ohio State
True or false: Ohio State had a 50-yard field goal attempt to knock off Georgia and advance to a national championship wherein it would’ve been a significant favorite. True. Of course, unlike Ohio State in the Peach Bowl against the defending champs, that field goal attempt never had a chance.
The Buckeyes have a chance to right the wrong of 2022 and win their first national title since 2014. Why? For starters, Ohio State returns a top-3 player in the sport in Marvin Harrison Jr. A loaded group of pass-catchers should help expected starting quarterback Kyle McCord, who figures to be the next in a long line of dominant Buckeye signal-callers.
Defensively, Ohio State did take a step forward with the Jim Knowles addition. In Year 2 of that defense, which only lost Zach Harrison to the NFL Draft (replacement Jack Sawyer might be even better), Ohio State ranks No. 20 in percentage of returning defensive production. Along with Sawyer, Ohio State is loaded with defensive players who are being projected as first-round picks (Todd McShay had 4 in his way-too-early mock). There’s talent. There’s scheme. There’s motivation.
There’s also a schedule that should set up well. Yes, Ohio State has to go to Notre Dame. That’s still against an Irish program who is 3-23 vs. AP Top 5 teams since 1999.
And yes, a trip to Ann Arbor looms. But we just watched Ohio State make the Playoff despite losing that game handily and missing out on a division title. That shouldn’t be the deal-breaker for the Buckeyes’ Playoff projection. We’ve seen multiple 11-1 Ohio State teams make the field. If anything, that precedent makes the Buckeyes an even safer pick to make the field.
Having said that, I expect a 12-1, Big Ten champ Ohio State team to hear its name called in the No. 2 spot on Selection Sunday.
If you aren’t picking Georgia to make the Playoff, I want you to look me in the eye and tell me you believe this team will lose 2 pre-Playoff games. That’s what it’ll take to not have the 2-time defending champs in the field. Don’t sell me this notion that Georgia needs to be undefeated to earn a Playoff berth. Did I mention that this is the 2-time defending champs? The 1-loss Dawgs would absolutely get the benefit of the doubt whether that includes a conference championship or not.
They won’t be punished for the loss of the Oklahoma game, either (nobody in their right mind would’ve left the one-off road game on the schedule because it makes zero financial sense). The conference who produced the last 4 national champs who had its winner in the title game in 16 of the last 17 years will get the benefit of the doubt, even if the quality wins are lacking. Georgia could be favored to win every pre-SEC Championship game by double digits. Sure, the schedule is weaker than normal, but who else could be considered a double-digit favorite on the road against a team who won 11 games last year? The Dawgs have earned that.
Losing 15 players to the NFL Draft and going 15-0 changes how we break down perceived areas of weakness. Carson Beck should be loaded with weapons to work with even if there are some legitimate questions about Mike Bobo taking over for Todd Monken. While the defensive line has had a ton of turnover in the last 2 years, you’ve still got arguably the best defensive line coach in America in Tray Scott.
It’s possible that some complacency sets in, but it’s hard to expect that when last year’s squad should’ve been a prime candidate for regression. Kirby Smart already showed us he knows how to combat that. Maybe we’ll have instances in which we question how motivated Georgia is, especially with the lack of headliner matchups on the regular season slate.
Still, though. If you’re picking against Georgia to make the Playoff, you’re overthinking it.
You must be logged in to post a comment. Please sign in or register
Interesting pick of Washington and Klem’s Son here. I would say USC over Washington and UGA or Bama or LSU and Ohio St will run through a weak Big10 again.
My neighbor’s sister makes $95 reliably on the workstation. She has beenwithout an occupation for a half year in any case multi month back her part was$30000 essentially dealing with the PC for two or three hours. Go to this siteand read more……..
Now Here —> Workathomee33.blogspot.Com
My neighbor’s sister makes $95 reliably on the workstation. She has beenwithout an occupation for a half year in any case multi month back her part was$30000 essentially (d) dealing with the PC for two or three hours. Go to this siteand read more……..
Now Here copy and open —> incomezone55.blogspot.com
Washington? Faces a brutal trifecta – Utah, at USC, at Oregon State. The Beavers lost in Seattle last season by 3 points and would have won kicking 2 field goals instead of twice going for it on 4th and goal.
Oregon had UW beat last season until a stupid coaching decision was made in the 4th quarter by 1st-year coach Dan Lanning. DL went for it on 4th down with Nix dinged up and on the bench.
UW will have a heck of an offense, Penix led the nation in passing last season and all of his receivers are back, but can it win a shootout in LA?
I think a second SEC team, Bama or LSU is in over UW.
The Pac-12 will eat each other’s young. Hard for this not to happen when you play 9 conference games in a conference with 5 and sometimes 6 teams, in the preseason top 25.
Mike, outstanding work. I commend your efforts since I presently produce more than $36,000 each month from just one simple web company. Despite the fact that these are the most basic internet br-12 operations jobs, you may start generating a good online income with as low as $29,000.
Alter the Connection ————————>>> Uniquehiring9.blogspot.com
I’m no Tide fan, but we will see if Saban has anything left. He has been poked at a lot lately. It could be a mistake.
This has been a fascinating offseason – many, many, MANY reasons* – to see Saban’s moves. I really like the move to build a more Smart-like team: the respect Saban has to revamp EVERYTHING to stop the Beast in the East is really cool to see. RTR!!!
“We live in a world in which there could be 3-4 legitimate Playoff contenders out of the Pac-12. Stunning, I know.” None of these teams will sniff the CFP. I stopped reading at Washington. Hilarious.
It’s a perverse media world we live in today Melch. Should one of the four Pac 12 teams Connor mentioned above make it out of their conference championship game sporting a single loss, like TCU did last year in the Big 12, the CFP committee will find a playoff spot for them in the final four, even at the expense of a more deserving second SEC team, or even the loser of the OSU-Michigan game. That will be doubly true if that Pac 12 team is blue-blood USC.
Spot on. It is going to be very difficult playing 9 conference games in a deep conference for any team playing 9 plus a 10th conference champ game to finish with 1L in the P12.
But the conference did give USC a nice going away present. Troy is idle the week before the conference champ game while Oregon State plays at Oregon, Washington State plays UW, and Utah plays what should be an improved CU team.
This could happen only in the dysfunctional Pac-1 where it is see foot, swallow.
The worst SEC bias is from their ignorant and incestuous fans.
… and from multiple dominant Natty’s! Read’em and weep underperformer USC.
Winner of the LSU/Bama game.
I agree with you JTF, so long that SEC West team only loses the SECC to UGA AND doesn’t force out a one-loss P5 conference champ. The CFP committee would NEVER allow that to happen, no matter how weak that P5 conference champ’s schedule may turn out to be.
Good picks. I don’t see why any of those picks couldn’t make it.
UGA will easily run the table in the SEC.
Clemson, as always, has an easy schedule.
Ohio State same as Clemson.
Washington is an interesting pick.
My daughter goes there. I hope they make it.
My son graduated with a civil engineering degree from UW and my daughter graduated from med school at UW.
Your daughter has to be one intelligent person. UW is not easy to get into especially for out-of-state applicants.
She is. Went to governors school here in Virginia made straight A+ graduated high school with advanced diploma and associates of science. She wants to be Dr. She loves it out there and is Freshman with brutal classes but doing well. Proud papa here.
Clemson, the schedule is not that easy. Plays a highly pre-season ranked FSU and Notre Dame and finishes at an improving South Carolina.
In 2023 prior to the SEC champ game Georgia has an easier schedule than does Clemson.
“Plays a highly pre-season ranked FSU and Notre Dame and finishes at an improving South Carolina.’
Clemson plays SC and FSU every single year.
Go troll someone else.
Ron, no trolling intended.
Yes, Clemson plays USC(e) every season but with the ACC eliminating divisions and staying at 8 conference games (chicken spit based upon the ACC enabling Notre Dame to stay independent,) Clemson will no longer play FSU every season.
Clemson’s SOS in 2023 is decent. Well above UGA and many other SEC teams.
“Clemson will no longer play FSU every season.”
They play them this year. What does “not every season’ have to do with this year?
Clemson’s 2023 schedule is EASY.
“Well above UGA and many other SEC teams.”
The SEC Championship game will determine to goes the playoffs.
Ron, you stated that Clemson plays FSU EVERY SEASON. Such is no longer the case.
Take a chill pill and treat other posters with a modicum of respect.
So many of your posts are immature smear jobs. It must be nice to be perfect; to sit on an altar on high and look down on the rest of us.
And really, to bring another person’s mother into play? Did you graduate from Auburn? You post like a kid who hasn’t reached puberty.
If you are trying to prove that you are an SOB and that Auburn graduates are idiots? Congratulations! You have succeeded.
Peace out and I won’t be responding to any garbage you toss back at me.
“Peace out and I won’t be responding to any garbage you toss back at me.”
“Ron, you stated that Clemson plays FSU EVERY SEASON.”
They’ve played FSU every year for decades. I’m not sure how you do not understand this.
“Take a chill pill and treat other posters with a modicum of respect.”
“And really, to bring another person’s mother into play? ”
Who are you referring to?
“Did you graduate from Auburn? ”
“If you are trying to prove that you are an SOB and that Auburn graduates are idiots? Congratulations! You have succeeded.”
Oh no, a random troll thinks I’m an idiot. What will I ever do?
You could try being a decent human being, but it’s obvious you prefer being the prick you are. Carry on.
“You could try being a decent human being, but it’s obvious you prefer being the prick you are. Carry on.”
Perhaps you should read through our back and forth before making snap judgements. Duck went after me first.
Also, I’ve refrained from conversing with you. I’d like to keep it that way.
I read it. I stand by my comment. I’ll try and avoid you from here on out also.
“I’ll try and avoid you from here on out also.”
Try???? Just avoid replying to my comments, GI Jane.
Every once in a while, I feel the need to call out a prick. I’ll do so whenever I desire.
“Every once in a while, I feel the need to call out a prick. I’ll do so whenever I desire.”
And you think this effects me how?
Public Service Announcement: If you suddenly find that you cannot reply to comments, it may be because you are using an ad blocker. If you want to reply to a comment, temporarily disabling your ad blocker might work.
Thank you. I didn’t put two and two together. It worked for me in a private window and I couldn’t figure out why It didn’t work in the normal one. Now here we are, with it working.
I’m assuming you’re using Chrome, MS Edge, or Firefox for your browser. If so, rather than use an ad blocker switch to Brave, which is focused on privacy and blocking ads. Do a search and check them out… and no, I don’t work for them or make money from them. Also, check out Duck Duck Go as your search engine… no, that is not a joke. Again, search it and they are also about stopping all the junk.
For someone without any technical skill – he’s right, I guess.
I use Duck Duck Go, block ads and don’t have that problem… yet.
Gracias. This site needs to up its comments game.
A lot of potential CFP teams. I don’t think there are any shoe-ins. Ga is as close to one as there is but that cream puff schedule may end up biting them, a couple times.
Yeah I’m a homer
Vols will score points. People are sleeping on the UT defense. It will be much better in 2023.
Let’s talk about your list…
Vols and LSU – It will come down to the winner of Tenn/Ga and LSU/Bama for the SEC championship. The playoff slot, as usual, is being held open for the SEC champ. For the SEC runner-up to make it, it’ll depend on what Clemson does.
Michigan – only if they beat Ohio St. But my bet will be on Ohio St. there’s a lot of pent up revenge in O ST’s veins.
USC – well they play in the PAC 12. That should be an “enough said” statement. But they might squeak in. If they do, they will be this year’s TCU team…the one who made it, but didn’t really belong. But don’t overlook that USC is and always has been the media’s darling. Don’t believe that doesn’t influence the PO voters. If the SEC runner-up has a strong showing in the regular season and SEC title game, they’ll be in. But again, there’s the Clemson wild card which will be key in determining who #4 will be.
All that being said, my list is
If USC is a one-loss Pac 12 champ, they’ll be in. You can make book on that, just as surely undefeated ND gets in too. The CFP committee will be happy to leave out one-loss champs from ALL the P5 conferences, except the SEC, to make sure those two “darlings” get in.
The Pac-12 has 5 and often 6 teams ranked in the preseason.
The SEC is the best no doubt but other conferences do play college football and the bottom half of the SEC is not all that.
USC(w) has a far more difficult schedule than in 2022.
SC missed both Oregon and UW in 2022, not the case in 2023 and SC has to play in South Bend this season.
1. Alabama, 2. Michigan, 3. UGA, 4. Tennessee.
Why not predict the ideal scenario for the SEC. Only need two things. Tennessee only has one regular season loss and doesn’t lose to USC again (LOL). Alabama either perfect regular season (not gonna happen probably or 1 loss and beat UGA in the SEC champ game. UGA only 1 loss heading into the CFP.
If the SEC sends multiple teams to the CFP then it’s LSU and UGA
I disagree. UT and Bama will also be in that mix
Nothing against the Vols, but I’m not high on Tenn from a national perspective.
For tenn to get in they have to beat UGA and Bama and win the SECCG against potentially Bama or LSU. I don’t think the vols have earned the benefit of a doubt as a 1 loss team with no championship. It’s likely a one loss Michigan or Ohio st would get in over them. Heck maybe even a one loss PSU if they’re runner ups in their division.
Jay, let me set this up for you on the Vols:
Schedule shakes out fairly well. Only 2 games that UT will be an underdog in is Bama and UGA, and one of those games is at home (UGA). UT loses both then no doubt the CFP is out of play. UT will start the year as a Top 10 team and will very likely be 6-0 heading into Bama game. That will certainly shape up to be a easy Top 5 matchup. Lose that game, but win against UGA and all is not lost. Either way your National Perspective is obviously off on UT…
You didn’t disprove a darn word I said. Your scenario sets up for Tenn to go to the SECCG which would be a must win….
Like I said, my national perspective is not off. A 1 loss, non SEC champion UT is not getting in over a one loss non champion Ohio St or Michigan or a one loss Conf champ in general.
Though I will concede the point that I said for them to get in they’d have to beat all three.
So your scenario is correct as a counter point to that. I concede.
Pardon me Jay, but you are correct. The UGA/UT game will knock the losing team out of the discussion. That would be the same scenario for BAMA/LSU if one of them doesn’t make the SECCG…
I agree. It is likely the only one loss, non champion SEC team that can get in is the runner up of the SECCG.
It’s not hard to come up with a scenario where all four playoff teams are from the SEC.
Imagine Alabama beating Tennessee, and losing to LSU. Imagine Tennessee beating Georgia and then beating LSU in the SECC Game. All four teams would have one loss if they win all their other games.
Now, imagine ALL other P5 teams losing two games or more. Something like that happened in 2007.
What would the CFP committee do with THAT scenario???
I think that’s sound logic for the top 3 teams. But Washington? I think if Washington loses just one game, they’re out. Call it bias, but I’m thinking a one-loss team from any other conference will get in before a one-loss PAC-12 team.
I’d replace Washington with Oregon.
Lanning and the Ducks had a respectable 1st season together and have momentum on their side. Plus, they don’t have to play UGA in 2023.
Bo Nix will have a great final season, seems like he’s been playing college football for a decade.
Washington did beat Oregon in 2022. I think they beat Oregon again, but will lose to USC.
I’ll be pulling for Huskies as my second team. My daughter goes there and I actually have gear I bought. I hope they have great season but if we end up playing them I’m uga all the way
Outside of the UGA game Oregon’s other loses were close games decide by less than a touchdown, OU lost 37-34 to Washington and lost 38-34 to Oregon St. Along the way Oregon beat #12 BYU, #9 UCLA and #10 Utah and finished with a nice bowl win over NC.
Not bad for a 1st time head coach in his first season, 7 points away from being 12-1.
Bo Nix improved throughout the 2022 season and OU signed a top-10 recruiting class for the 2023 cycle.
If OU takes a step forward in 2023 they will be a very formidable team.
I love this call. The Ducks do get USC and Oregon State at home but trip to UW and Utah and have a sneaky tough OOC game at Texas Tech.
There are scenarios in which UGA could be left out with a single loss. Lets say Utah, OSU, and Clemson go Undefeated. Then, 12-0 UGA loses to 11-1 LSU in SEC Championship.
I agree here. I just don’t see a Pac 12 team going undefeated. And tOSU has to get through Michigan first before I believe they will.
In most of the probably scenarios, Georgia gets in with one loss though esp if they’re SEC champions.
For the record, I don’t think the Pac 12 champ will be unbeaten either. Just making light of the writer saying “No way a one loss UGA gets left out”.
Since Utah and UW joined the conference no Pac-12 team has run the 9-game regular season slate.
And I think this will continue to be the case in 2023.
1. Michigan(will get blown out in the first round anyway, only here cause of weak schedule)
2. LSU(predicting them giving UGA their only loss in the SECCG
3. Texas(OU is down and TCU is not going to repeat what they did last season. Texas has the talent to go undefeated with a weak Big 12 schedule and undeservedly make the playoffs)
4. UGA(would’ve been #3 if not for LSU being #2)
Texas? No way anyone from the Big 12 gets a sniff after last year’s TCU blunder.
You’re out of your mind if you think they wouldn’t put an 12-1/13-0 Texas in the CFP.
Blunder? You mean how they won the semifinal against the undefeated Big10 champs?
Let’s be honest here, TCU was fortunate to even be in the playoff. Their Non-con schedule was a joke and they needed multiple comebacks and close victories against mediocre teams just to get there. Everything bounced their way, all season long.
Texas??? I’d bet more on Oklahoma.
No Big 12 team is getting in unless Texas goes undefeated and beats Bama by 10 or more in the process.
I disagree. A 12-1 Texas with a Big 12 title and only a loss to Bama would certainly get them in the CFP.
That would depend on the scenario of other teams as well. Does FSU get in with a 12-1 record with only a loss to LSU?
Including an ACC championship title.
@GT8 I think it’d come down to eye test in that scenario. Who’s loss looked better first of all (though I hate that phrase) then if it’s similar who has looked better all year.
It obviously depends on what other teams do and how many teams are vying for those four coveted spots. Texas is a MAJOR brand and I think it would be very hard for them to get left out after winning the Big 12 and going 12-1.
Sark is not a championship level HC.
My neighbor’s sister makes $95 reliably on the workstation. She has beenwithout an occupation for a half year in any case multi month back her part was$30000 essentially dealing with the PC for two or three hours. Go to this siteand read more……..
Now Here —>
Not bad picks, I agree with Georgia and Clemson. OSU or Michigan from the big 10, Michigan has an easier path though with their noncon schedule. I think the pac 12 will cut each other’s throats though, as much as I like the Washington pick I don’t think any team is getting through without two losses. It’s going to be a second SEC team and a big 12 team to round out the playoff
A second SEC team Or a big 12 team
I predict Aggies only regular season loss will be a lopsided loss to the SEC champion. The committee will proceed to leave the Aggies out of the CFP in favor of a one loss Notre Dame.
It could happen. There is precedent.
A&M will lose in Neyland this year.
It was a joke (sort of). That doesn’t invalidate my prediction, BTW.
LSU lost out on beating Texas for the national championship in 1969 because Notre Dame ended their self-imposed bowl ban and inserted themselves into that game vs Texas.
Better hold the SEC banner high at scUM in week two. Road tilts at UT, Ole Miss, and LSU. Aggie ceiling is 10-2 this season. Floor shouldn’t anything worse than 7-5.
UGA is always going to be the favorite, as well as they should be.
3. USCw/Ohio State
Any of those combos.
After LSU wins by 20+ in the opener in Orlando, the national media slurpfest of the Evil Nole will subside.
I hope so…. Cmon LSU use up all your (Beat a Florida School) Juice on FSU.
4. UCF (no Texas or TCU on slate and committee will do everything in their power to avoid 2 SEC teams)
Amen. Tallahassee is getting more love than it deserves. More love than the days of Freddy ‘Boom Boom’ Canon and that’s going way, way, way back.
So Cal 2? I’ll believe SC has a worthy defense only when I see it.
SC will lose at Oregon and lose 1 of the games versus Utah and UW.
Reading the comments here and from the media, the LSU hype train is in full force and it is not stopping anytime soon. It just doesn’t make much sense.
I understand they beat Bama and won the West, but what about those four losses, three of them being blowouts? Does a 1-point win at home over Bama really carry that much weight in how a team is perceived? How flattering.
You’d think LSU was playing their best ball down the stretch to warrant such over the top hype and praise going into the 2023 season. LSU lost by 15 to a 5-7 team to end the season and then went and let UGA lay a 50 burger on them in the SECCG. No, beating Purdue without their starting QB doesn’t count for much.
I think LSU will have an amazing season and they are a really good team under CBK, but to think they are leaps and bounds ahead of Bama or that they are the clear West favorite at this point is just egregious and frankly a little baffling.
I think it’s the appeal of change. If a team has won the division (especially a rival) for many consecutive years in a row, fans are desperate to find change and LSU just beat Alabama and they are the #2 team in the West. People want Alabama to lose. Right now they believe LSU is the biggest chance to do just that.
Agree. I think Bama is still team to beat in West.
Yes they are, at least this season since LSU goes to Bama.
For the record most of us are burnt out on seeing LSU in the title game as well. When was the last time someone outside of Auburn, LSU, or Bama won the west? 2006? Same goes for the East, dont get me wrong id love to see FL in it this year but id settle for something weird like Ole Miss Vs TN.
LSU also scored 30 on UGAs defense before Ohio State put up 40+. A lot of the hype is riding on the potential, the continuity, the returning players and experience they have.
What happened in those losses have no bearing on what happens in 2023. If it did, LSU would barely be ranked to begin the season. You know this, yet refuse to believe it.
Did Alabama get knocked down a few pegs for getting blown out by Clemson in the national championship? Did they get knocked down after getting blown out by UGA in the national championship? No…the benefit of the doubt is given because of what is coming back.
C’mon man…you already know this stuff.
Has LSU had wildly consistent success for the past 15 years? No. That is why Bama never gets “knocked down a peg” because they have consistently been at the top of the sport for over a decade. Those two games you mentioned were National Championship games not 15 point losses to a 5-7 team. That comparison is not apples to apples.
It’s not baffling.
Bama, questions at the most important position.
LSU, last year’s west champion and continuity at the most important position.
I love people talking about LSU like it’s a foregone conclusion they win the West again. LSU splits hairs with Bama to win it last year on one play in OT in Baton Rouge. Come on.
Nothing is a foregone conclusion about anything…including Bama being even as good as they were last year….Georgia could go 6-6
They also barely beat aub and ark and were handled by a terrible tamu team last year.
Alabama needs to find a QB before they start worrying about the LSU hype.
That’s a huge concern for Bama is the QB play for next year. If you don’t have consistent QB play, then your in trouble in the SEC and college football for that matter. Throw in that Bama has Coordinators and it will make for an interesting year for the Tide. I know Saban has done this before and won with new coordinators, but I really think Bryce Young kept that team from losing more than just 2 games last year.
The QB “issue” is not really as big of a problem as many on here and in the media are making it out to be.
Of course, there were going to be some questions and some drop off at the position after the past four QBs Bama has had. I for one, think it is being blown way out of proportion because the media and rival fans see a slight weakness, so they pounce on it and run with it as much as possible.
Slight weakness? Alabama is replacing the best QB in college football with an unknown. That’s not even mentioning the loss of the best defensive player in the sport, and a multi talented RB who could have helped take some of the pressure off the new QB. And, they have two new coordinators to boot. Alabama may indeed win the West, but they aren’t exactly set up for success this season.
Alabama replaces studs all the time. Alabama loses top draft picks every single year. That is nothing new. Bama replaces coordinators all the time. Again, nothing new and many Bama fans would argue that we upgraded in that department.
The QB position is just as you mentioned, an unknown at this point. We won’t know if that is a weakness or a strength until the season starts. Would you be willing to bet that Saban fails at fielding a competent QB? Something that has never happened.
What a ridiculous statement to say that Bama isn’t set up for success. Have you been under a rock the past 15 years? Wow, I know you’re smarter than that.
Apparently, I’m not. This is not a typical offseason for Alabama, no matter how much you want to pretend it is. I won’t be alone in this, as I suspect Alabama will have it lowest preseason ranking in over a decade.
I am still baffled that you said Bama isn’t set up for success. That statement alone negates any argument you are trying to make.
The fact that you think a team that had to go to the transfer portal after spring practice to sign an unproven QB tells me your tint just keeps getting darker and darker. The Bama program is certainly set up for success. This years team is not. Last years team won nothing and they lost their best two offensive players and their best defensive player, along with both coordinators. So no, I do not think this team is set up for success. And I still say the preseason rankings will bear that out.
Oh no not the preseason rankings!!! Surely you’re not using the meaningless preseason rankings as part of your argument?? Bama is doomed in that case since they won’t be #1 or #2. Bummer!
I’ll entertain, however. Alabama will be a top 5 team and has recruited better than anyone else, has more talent that any team, has the GOAT as their coach, has multiple 1st round draft picks, and hasn’t won less than 11 games in over a decade. But in your eyes Bama isn’t set up for success. I’d like to know what success is then. I guess in your eyes it comes down to two words: Jayden Daniels, who if you need reminded, is also a transfer. Hilarious.
You keep digging a deeper and deeper hole with these asinine comments. That 4 loss season really went to your head. It’s flattering that beating Bama by 1-point at home has you thinking your team is now elite. Thanks for the laugh.
For a guy that claims to have multiple degrees, your reading comprehension sucks. There is nothing about LSU in my posts. Nothing. This is about Alabama and what they lost and failed to replace. You blow off preseason ranking but hang your hat on HS recruiting rankings. That’s cute.
Well, I sure hope little ole Bama can go 8-4 this year since their roster is apparently so depleted of talent and the new coordinators are not prepared to bring success. Eye roll.
Doubt Bama at your own peril. Good luck with that.
Standard…I don’t think the LSU hype train is as much about last year’s win/loss record as much as it is about this year’s roster, staff, and continuity. LSU matches or beats Bama across the roster, and we have continuity with our QB and coordinators. Daniels improved throughout last season and should emerge as one of the nation’s top QBs.
You may not be riding the hype train and that’s fair, but to call it baffling is a little…baffling!
Some hype is certainly warranted, but the overwhelming support that LSU is the clear favorite in the West is a bit outrageous in my opinion.
LSU has the better QB and TE rooms for sure. Bama has the better RB, OL, and Secondary. LSU has the start power at DL and LB but Bama’s room is much deeper and overall more talented. The WRs are a wash.
Crimson colored glasses will do that to you.
And if you see otherwise then it must be due to your purple and gold colored glasses.
You said your OLine was better. That’s a maybe at best. The WR’s are not a wash. Not close.
I’m not seeing “overwhelming support” that LSU is the “clear favorite” in the West, and every article I’ve read acknowledges Bama is going to be hard to unseat twice. I guess we all see what we want to see.
No maybe’s about it, LSU’s O line is better than Bama’s – and so are our WRs. LSU RBs may be better as well. Honestly, I’ll take LSU’s coaches, roster, momentum, and trajectory over Bama’s at this point.
You’re a proud fan and I commend you for that. What you just said is the epitome of seeing things through purple and gold colored glasses. Better RB room and better coaching staff, woof. I guess you forgot CBK desperately wanted Rees to follow him and he declined to stay at ND.
You’re entitled to your opinion, but doubt Bama and Saban at your own peril.
I’m not necessarily saying our coaching staff is better, just that there’s continuity there and I think that matters particularly this season when Alabama doesn’t have it. Then there’s the already ad nauseum QB conversation…
I’m not sure Saban has much on Kelly anyway. Kelly is using his own Process and building winning culture on and off the field in BR while already keeping up with everyone else in recruiting. Kelly has the high moment of his career ahead of him while Saban is watching his high *era* enter the rearview. Definitely not taking anything away from GOAT Saban, but like I said before – at this point, give me Kelly.
We’ll see about the RB room. LSU would surprise everyone (surely including themselves) if more than one of the backs that are poised to do it – John Emery, Noah Cain, Armoni Goodwin, Josh Williams – would finally have a breakout year. It looks like we’ll have the O-line to facilitate that. The new Louisiana record-holder for most career yards, Trey Holly, will be back there too. Not saying it’s going to happen, but if more than one of those backs has a good year then LSU will be pretty scary on O.
I saw one of the Gator fans post something like “being a homer is fun.” That’s why I’m here…
Pretty easy to argue that if UGA loses in the SECCG and there are 4 unbeatens they don’t get in.
Unlike Connor, I don’t think may is the best time to predict anything in cfb. However, I’ll go out on a limb and predict you go one for four.
The last Four.
2. Michigan/Ohio St winner
4. Clemson/ Florida St winner
I’m sorry Ohio state chokes and they will have to play Michigan. That conference as a whole is weak! I don’t see any pac being in CFP. I see two SEC teams CFP. SEC is by far on a consistent basis is the best conference. Clemson should be in CFP as well ACC has sucked for many years
Georgia could lose a game??? Gasp!
No sir. They win every game ever for all time 49 at least. UGa cannot ever lose another football game. Nay sir.
Alabama. Georgia. OSU. USCw. Shuffle in any order.
UGA, OSU, WA and TEXAS. Bama loses to both Texas teams this year.
The team up north
With this year’s broader proliferation of pre-season contenders, … how nice would it be to have the 8 team playoff this year!