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College Football: Preseason Top 25

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College football is one week away, as Hawaii and Cal open the 2016 season in Sydney, Australia next Friday. The local teams don't kick things off until Labor Day weekend, but PSR has our preseason rankings together already.

College Football Playoff Teams:
Alabama- For the third season in a row, Alabama exited spring practice with an unresolved quarterback competition. Of course, that hasn’t hurt the Tide recently, as they have reached each of the first two College Football Playoff championship games, winning last year’s. While the Tide suffered key losses on both offense and defense, Nick Saban’s teams reload as well as any in the country. Alabama returns 12 starters from their national championship team, and have the #1 incoming recruiting class for 2016 as well.

Oklahoma- The Sooners are a heavy favorite to win the Big 12, as the loaded backfield of Baker Mayfield, Samaje Perrine, and Joe Mixon remains intact to lead an explosive offense. Oklahoma also brings in a top 20 recruiting class to go along with 14 returning starters from an 11-2 squad. If the Sooners can fill the defensive voids left by the likes of Eric Stryker, Charles Tapper, and Zach Sanchez, they will look to push for a national title as well.

Florida State - After winning 10 games in a rebuilding season, FSU is poised to challenge for a championship. The Seminoles return 17 starters, including stud running back and Heisman contender Dalvin Cook. The ‘Noles also signed the #2 recruiting class for 2016 to aid quarterbacks Sean Maguire and redshirt freshman Deondre Francois in leading the charge for a playoff push.

Ohio State - Despite narrowly missing out on the college football playoff, the 2015 Ohio State team set a record by having 12 players selected in the first four rounds of the NFL draft. The Buckeyes also return the fewest number of starters, six, of any Power 5 school. However, due to elite recruiting classes, including the #4 ranked class in 2016, the Buckeyes should be able to reload and compete for a playoff spot behind the leadership of signal-caller J.T. Barrett.

Just Missed:
Clemson- Although they have suffered heavy losses on defense, the Tigers return eight offensive starters, including Heisman candidate Deshaun Watson, as well as one of the nation’s top receiving corps. With the 11th ranked incoming recruiting class, the Clemson offense may be as potent as last year when they averaged 38 points per game. 

LSU- As usual, the Tigers will rely on their running game, led by Heisman candidate Leonard Fournette, and their defense, to be successful. The Bayou Bengals return 18 starters, including receiver Malachi Dupre, as well as bring in the #3 ranked recruiting class according to 24/7 Sports.

Michigan- Second-year head coach Jim Harbaugh is quickly developing his Wolverines into a playoff team behind a physical, stout defense. If the Maize and Blue can find stability at the quarterback position, they should find themselves challenging Ohio St. for the Big Ten crown.

Notre Dame- Only four schools have had more players selected in the first three rounds of the NFL Draft than the Fighting Irish in the past five seasons. Brian Kellys’ squad sees 10 starters return from a 10-3 team, including quarterbacks Deshone Kizer and Malik Zaire, -- each of whom, could help the Irish navigate a favorable schedule.

Tennessee- After steady improvement under head coach Butch Jones, the Volunteers are a popular pick to have a breakout year and win the SEC East. Tennessee brings back 18 starters, including dual-threat quarterback Joshua Dobbs.

Stanford- After winning three of the past four Pac-12 titles, the Cardinal enter 2016 with a bit of a quarterback battle after the departure of Kevin Hogan. Stanford returns 11 starters from a 12-2 team, led by sensational running back Christian McCaffrey.

Best of the Rest:
11. Georgia
12. Ole Miss
13. Baylor
14. Michigan St.
15. Washington
16. Houston
17. USC
18. North Carolina
19. Texas A&M
20. Louisville
21. UCLA
22. Oregon
23. Oklahoma St.
24. Iowa
25. Miami (FL)

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