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2007 Preseason Rankings - No. 100 to 109
Posted Aug 3, 2007

Preview 2007 CFN Preseason Rankings No. 100 to 109. ... Near the Bottom

2007 Preseason Rankings

Near the Bottom - No. 100 to No. 109

These teams should struggle to make much noise

There's one very important distinction in the CFN preseason rankings: these are based on how good the teams are going into the season and NOT how they're going to finish. Some teams have easier schedules than others, some get tougher road games and some will need a little bit of time to jell meaning they might be better than their final record might indicate. Going into the year, these are how good the teams appear to be from No. 1 through 119.

CFN 2007 Preseason Rankings
1 to 10 | 11 to 20 | 21 to 29 | 30 to 39 | 40 to 49 | 50 to 59
60 to 69 | 70 to 79 | 80 to 89 | 90 to 99 | 110 to 119

100. Kent State  
- Kent State Preview |
Offense | Defense | Depth Chart
The ranking is too low because ... the defense should be solid with a fantastic pass rush and a promising secondary with All-MAC quality performers in CB Jack Williams and SS Fritz Jacques to count on. Colin Ferrell might be the league's best defensive linemen, while Kevin Hogan might lead the conference in sacks and/or quarterback pressures. Julian Edelman is a good enough quarterback to lead the offense to a good year.
The ranking is too high because ... the passing game isn't going to be anything to write home about. If the ground attack isn't working, the offense will go nowhere. The secondary might be decent, but statistically, that was because the Golden Flashes didn't face too many good passing teams. The D might be strong, but it won't be as good as last year's, while the offense won't make a dramatic enough leap to challenge for the conference title.
Relative Strengths: Offensive Backfield, Linebacker
Relative Weaknesses:
Receiver, Special Teams

Ball State   
- Ball State Preview | Offense | Defense | Depth Chart
The ranking is too low because ... Nate Davis is the type of quarterback teams win MAC titles with. The passing game should be terrific with Davis slinging to a terrific group of pass catchers led by tight end Darius Hill and recevier Dante Love. The defense might not be anything special, but it'll be full of veterans and might be just good enough to keep some teams down for a drive or two in shootouts.
The ranking is too high because ... the secondary can't cover anyone. Corners Trey Buice and Trey Lewis have been through the MAC a few times, but they aren't lock-down defenders. The ground game might not be good enough to provide any sort of help for the passing game.
Relative Strengths: Quarterback, Receiver
Relative Weaknesses:
Running Back, Secondary

- Troy Preview
| Offense | Defense | Depth Chart
The ranking is too low because ... the best team in the Sun Belt is better. While that might not seem like much, consider how easily the Trojans beat Rice in the New Orleans Bowl, and figure the team is as good as an upper-level Conference USA team coming into the season. QB Omar Haugabook will be the signature player, but the defense will lead the way with a fantastic front that'll get into the backfield early and often, and a secondary that'll shut down everyone in the league.
The ranking is too high because ... the running backs are good, but nothing special, while the linebacking corps will be average. The Achilles' heel could be an offensive line that will struggle against any line of substance. This is a team that had a so-so Sun Belt season, came up with the big win when it had to have it, and won the bowl game in a surprising walk. Now, as the favorite to with the conference title, the bull's-eye will be on the team's back every game.
Relative Strengths: Quarterback, Defensive Line
Relative Weaknesses:
Offensive Line, Running Back

Rice Preview | Offense | Defense
The ranking is too low because ... even with a new coaching staff in place, the team is now familiar with a spread offense that was learned on the fly last season. QB Chase Clement and WR Jarett Dillard are back for what should be the most dangerous pitch-catch combination in Conference USA. The defense has enough decent athletes to generate pressure into the backfield.
The ranking is too high because ... the overall talent level just isn't there. 2006 was a magical season when everything went right, and even with shifts in alignments and a few tweaks and adjustments, the run defense isn't going to be all that great, while the lines are among the worst in the conference.
Relative Strengths: Wide Receiver, Quarterback
Relative Weaknesses:
Defensive Line, Offensive Line

Louisiana Tech  
- Louisiana Tech Preview | Offense | Defense | Depth Chart
The ranking is too low because ... the ground game should be just good enough to control most WAC games, with Patrick Jackson likely to be the league's most underappreciated back. The defensive back seven is fast and experienced, while the line can't be any worse than last year. With Derek Dooley and a new coaching staff comes new ideas and excitement, and there's enough overall experience to work with to prevent a further slide into mediocrity.
The ranking is too high because ... the defense still has to prove it can stop someone. This was the nation's worst defense from start to finish, and now the experience has to turn into production. There was no pressure generated from anywhere, and the jury is still out on whether or not the new coaching staff has come up with any brilliant ideas to changes things up.
Relative Strengths: Running Back, Special Teams
Relative Weaknesses:
Defensive Line, Quarterback

- Tulane Preview
| Offense | Defense | Depth Chart
The ranking is too low because ... new head coach Bob Toledo should inject some life into an offense that great stagnant over the last few years. There will be more vertical passes with a good, speedy receiving corps to rely on, while there should be a little semblance of a running game if Matt Forte can get any room. Eight starters return on defense.
The ranking is too high because ... there's still a lot of rebuilding to be done. The program still hasn't rebounded from the Katrina disaster, and it's still about the baby steps to get Tulane back to where it was at a few years ago. The offensive line might be the worst in the league and will have a hard time allowing the skill players to do their thing. The secondary will get ripped apart by the better Conference USA passers.
Relative Strengths: Running Back, Receiver
Relative Weaknesses:
Offensive Line, Secondary

UAB Preview | Offense | Defense | Depth Chart
The ranking is too low because ... after doing a whole lot of nothing last year, the offense is undergoing an overhaul under new coordinator Kim Helton with a pro-style attack. The defense should be better with a good back seven returning and potential to be improved up front. The biggest key will be at quarterback, where two good prospects in Joseph Webb and Sam Hunt will battle it out.
The ranking is too high because ... the offense won't go anywhere unless the line is better. It should be a big issue with four senior starters needing to be replaced, and not enough talent at the skill positions to make up for the youth up front. There isn't going to be much of a pass rush from the D line early on with Brandon Jeffries the lone pass rusher to count on.
Relative Strengths: Linebacker, Quarterback
Relative Weaknesses:
Offensive Line, Defensive Line

UL Monroe   
- UL Lafayette Preview | Offense | Defense | Depth Chart
The ranking is too low because ... the Warhawks get all 11 starters back from the Sun Belt's best offense. The ground game should be close to unstoppable in conference play with Calvin Dawson working behind one of the league's best lines. Kinsmon Lancaster is a good, veteran quarterback who should do a better job of using all his experienced targets.
The ranking is too high because ... the defense still has a long way to go before it'll be among the league's best. The line is the real issue without much of a pass rush to rely on and not enough beef against the run. Losing Kevin Payne and Chaz Williams from the secondary could be a killer. The team, overall, might be better, but the record probably won't indicate it.
Relative Strengths: Running Back, Offensive Line
Relative Weaknesses:
Linebacker, Defensive Line

108. Arkansas State  
- Arkansas State Preview | Offense | Defense | Depth Chart
The ranking is too low because ... everyone in the Sun Belt should be able to run, and ASU will be able to pound with the best of them with four good backs to carry the workload led by Reggie Arnold. The defense has a great back seven and the best safety tandem in the Sun Belt with Tyrell Johnson and Khayyam Burns each strong enough to earn all-star honors.
The ranking is too high because ... there won't be much, if any passing. Corey Leonard can run the ball, but he's not going to scare anyone with his arm. That means the ground game will be everything, and that could be a problem with an average line to work behind. The defensive line has the potential to be a huge weakness, which would be just enough to keep the Indians out of the Sun Belt race.
Relative Strengths: Running Back, Secondary
Relative Weaknesses:
Linebacker, Quarterback

109. Middle Tennessee   
Middle Tennessee Preview | Offense | Defense | Depth Chart

The ranking is too low because ... the Blue Raiders are loaded on the defensive line with three all-star caliber ends in Erik Walden, Sean Mosley and Tavares Jones, who should all be terrors for opposing quarterbacks. The receiving corps, while not all that great, has enough experience to potentially make the passing game the best of an awful Sun Belt lot. The O line might be average, but it's very big and should do some shoving around for a good group of backs.
The ranking is too high because ... there are big issues at several key spots. While this could grow into the Sun Belt's best team by late October, going into the year there are just enough problems to be in the middle of the conference pack early on. The defensive back seven has some patching up to do, while the offense has to prove it can be consistent, and not just opportunistic.
Relative Strengths: Defensive Line, Running Back
Relative Weaknesses:
Linebacker, Wide Receiver


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