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The Final Rankings Will Be ... No. 26-40
Georgia QB Aaron Murray
Georgia QB Aaron Murray
CollegeFootballNews.com
Posted Apr 5, 2011


Which teams are probably going to end up just outside of the top 20, but will be in the race for a BCS game, conference titles, and big seasons? Looking at the schedules, the returing talent, and the timing of the big games, here's our spring ball call on how the season might turn out with the teams that'll probably just miss out on being among the elite.

2011 Spring Preview - No. 14

The Final Polls Will Be ... 21-40
 

 2011 Spring Preview  

The college basketball national championship is over - mercifully, after yet another missed Butler shot - so how will the college football race shape up? Before spring ball finishes up, here's the first look at where every team will probably end up. We already took a guess at what the the preseason polls will probably be, and now here's the best guess at what the final 120 rankings might be after the regular season. One note, this isn't a ranking of how good we think the teams are; that will all come out in the Preview 2011 Rankings. These rankings take into account the schedules, timing, and talent level. This is a projection and a prediction, and yes, these will probably change later this summer, but for now ...

The Spring Prediction For The Final Regular Season Rankings
Top Ten | No. 11 to 20 COMING THURSDAY
No. 21 to 40 | No. 41 to 60   
No. 61 to 80 | No. 81 to 100 | No. 101 to 120

Schedules and Too-Early Spring Picks
ACC | Big East | Big Ten | Big 12 | C-USA | Ind
MAC | M-West | Pac-12 | SEC | Sun Belt | WAC 

2011 Spring Preview  

- No. 20 Top 50 Non-Conference Games (No. 1-10) 
- Top 50 Non-Conference Games (No. 11-20) 
- Top 50 Non-Conference Games (No. 21-30) 
- Top 50 Non-Conference Games (No. 31-40) 
- Top 50 Non-Conference Games (No. 41-50)  

- No. 19 - Is a smaller Big 12 better? 
- No. 18 - Who doesn't want to be Independent?  
- No. 17 - Should the SEC champ play in the BCS Champ?  

- No. 16 Top 50 Conf. Games (No. 1-10) 
- Top 50 Conference Games (No. 11-20) 
- Top 50 Conference Games (No. 21-30) 
- Top 50 Conference Games (No. 31-40) 
- Top 50 Conference Games (No. 41-50)  

- No. 15 The Preseason Polls Will Probably Be ...

Schedules and Too-Early Spring Picks
ACC | Big East
Big Ten | Big 12
C-USA | Ind | MAC   
Mountain West | Pac-12
SEC | Sun Belt | WAC 
21. North Carolina 9-3
The Spring Call: The Tar Heels will manage to bounce back from a strange and disappointing 2010 by roaring through the second half of the slate, including a win over Virginia Tech after a week off, to pull off a Coastal title on the way to the ACC Championship game.

22. Virginia Tech 10-2
The Spring Call: The Hokies might be rebuilding a bit, but they'll come up with another great run in the Coastal race. Losses to Miami and North Carolina at home will be disappointing, but a relatively soft slate with no Florida State to deal with will mean another double-digit win campaign.

23. Florida State 9-3
The Spring Call: The Seminoles get a chance to show just how good they are early on with a home date against (likely) No. 1 Oklahoma, but the bigger game is the week after going to Clemson in an Atlantic showdown. The gaffe in a loss to the Tigers will end up costing the Noles the division title.

24. Air Force 9-3
The Spring Call: The Falcons will be great, but they won't be able to get over the Mountain West hump with losses to TCU and Boise State. They'll also struggle against Notre Dame, but that'll be it as they blow past everyone else. The tenth win will come in the bowl.

25. Georgia 8-4
The Spring Call: The Dawgs will bounce back to be respectable, and a 2-0 start against Boise State and South Carolina will get everyone talking, but back-to-back losses to Mississippi State and Tennessee, and a loss to Florida, will get the Mark Richt detractors screaming.

26. Clemson 8-4
The Spring Call: The Tigers will have their moments, including a win over Florida State in the ACC opener and a key victory over Boston College, to end up winning the Atlantic, but they'll lose road games to Virginia and NC State and will lose the title game to either North Carolina or the Hokies.

27. Missouri 8-4
The Spring Call: Mizzou, welcome to having to play the entire Big 12 South slate. Going to Arizona State will be an eye-opener, but the problem will be going to Oklahoma State and Texas A&M while needing to deal with Oklahoma and Texas, too (but the games are at home).

28. Stanford 8-4
The Spring Call: Even with Andrew Luck, Stanford will take a step back without Jim Harbaugh at the helm. Now, everyone will be gunning for the Cardinal and it'll show in rough road dates against Arizona, USC, and Oregon State. The Oregon game is at home, but the Ducks will win another shootout.

29. BYU 9-3
The Spring Call: The Cougars will start out life as an independent by making a good statement with a win over Ole Miss on the way to a 6-1 start, but there will be problems in the Lone Star state losing to Texas and TCU. November doesn't get any easier with two off weeks and home games against Idaho and New Mexico State, and that's when BYU will move up the rankings as other teams start to get picked off.

30. Michigan State 8-4
The Spring Call: The Spartans won't be a disappointment, but they'll struggle a wee bit with a rough slate having to go to Notre Dame, Ohio State, Nebraska and Iowa. On the plus side, Michigan and Wisconsin come to East Lansing. This is a veteran team, and it'll be a good one, but it won't be special like the 2010 version.

31. Iowa 8-4
The Spring Call: The Hawkeyes need to do some rebuilding and reloading, but they'll play well early on racking up an 8-1 start. And then will come the disastrous finish with three straight losses to Michigan State, at Purdue, and at Nebraska to bow out of the Legends race.

32. South Florida 9-3
The Spring Call: Skip Holtz's team will come up with a strong year after a season-opening loss to Notre Dame. Road losses at Pitt and Syracuse will end Big East title dreams, but a December win over West Virginia will assure a strong bowl bid.

33. Texas A&M 7-5
The Spring Call: The Aggies will be one of the year's bigger disappointments considering all the talent returning and all the high expectations, but they'll rally after a disastrous first half with four wins in the final five games including a big victory over Texas to salvage the season. A&M will finish as one of the year's hotter teams … again.

34. Auburn 7-5
The Spring Call: The defending national champions aren't going to totally fall off the map talent-wise, but the schedule will be too nasty with trips to South Carolina, Arkansas, and LSU to deal with and with home losses to Florida and Alabama.

35. Miami 8-4
The Spring Call: Al Golden's team might be solid, but the schedule is way too tough to expect a strong first season. The Canes play six 2010 bowl teams in the first seven games, including dates with Ohio State and at Virginia Tech and North Carolina, and they have to go on the road in November to face USF and Florida State.

36. Penn State 7-5
The Spring Call: The Nittany Lions will overcome an early loss to Alabama for a nice first half of the year, but the second half collapse will hurt including losses at Ohio State and Wisconsin after a brutal home date against Nebraska.

37. Texas Tech 8-4
The Spring Call: The record might be better than the team with a win over Texas A&M the crown jewel on the way to a 6-0 start before getting pasted at Oklahoma. The second half of the year might be rough, but eight wins would be a nice step forward.

38. Nevada 9-3
The Spring Call: Colin Kaepernick might be gone, but the offense will keep rolling on. A 1-3 start with road  losses to Oregon, Texas Tech, and Boise State all looking ugly, and then the wins will flow with an eight-game victory streak to close out the year. With the Broncos gone, the Pack will win the WAC outright.

39. Illinois 7-5
The Spring Call: The running game will keep on working, but a softer defense will mean problems against Arizona State early and Ohio State and Penn State later on. The call is for the Illini will be wildly inconsistent. A win over Wisconsin will be followed up by a loss at Minnesota. A win over Northwestern will be followed up by a loss at Indiana.

40. Tennessee 7-5
The Spring Call: A tough midsection playing LSU, at Alabama, and South Carolina will put the pressure on in November, but the Vols will finish strong going 3-1 with a loss to Arkansas. The lone big win to hang the hat on will come against Georgia.

2011 Spring Preview
- No. 20 Top 50 Non-Conference Games (No. 1-10) 
- Top 50 Non-Conference Games (No. 11-20) 
- Top 50 Non-Conference Games (No. 21-30) 
- Top 50 Non-Conference Games (No. 31-40) 
- Top 50 Non-Conference Games (No. 41-50)  

- No. 19 - Is a smaller Big 12 better? 
- No. 18 - Who doesn't want to be Independent?  
- No. 17 - Should the SEC champ play in the BCS Champ?  

- No. 16 Top 50 Conference Games (No. 1-10) 
- Top 50 Conference Games (No. 11-20) 
- Top 50 Conference Games (No. 21-30) 
- Top 50 Conference Games (No. 31-40) 
- Top 50 Conference Games (No. 41-50)  

- No. 15 The Preseason Polls Will Probably Be ...

Schedules and Too-Early Spring Picks
ACC | Big East | Big Ten | Big 12 | C-USA | Ind | MAC   
Mountain West | Pac-12 | SEC | Sun Belt | WAC