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College Football's Top 25 Defensive Back Units for 2013

By Steven Lassan, 8 months 2 hours ago
The SEC is known for its defense, so it should be no surprise that two of college football’s top four defensive backfields hail from that conference. Florida takes the top spot in Athlon’s 2013 secondary rankings, as the Gators have a stellar one-two punch at cornerback with Loucheiz Purifoy and Marcus Roberson. Alabama isn’t far behind, but the Crimson Tide will be without...

College Football's Top Backstory Games for 2013

By David Fox, 8 months 1 day ago
College football is all about the stories — the rivalries, the personal connections and the connection to history.Alabama’s trip to Texas A&M, provided Johnny Manziel plays, is notable for the title implications and the rematch from the most exciting game from 2012.But it’s also a game between programs that despite their shared history with Bear Bryant, Gene Stallings and...

The ACC's Top 25 Games to Watch in 2013

By Braden Gall, 8 months 3 days ago
Who would have thought that North Carolina State hosting Florida State would have been the most important game in the ACC in 2012?That thrilling, nail-biting, fourth-down-converting loss to the Wolfpack in a crazed Carter-Finley Stadium hurt the Seminoles in the national championship picture. It was the biggest, most impactful game of the entire ’12 campaign for any team in the ACC.With...

College Football's Top 25 Offensive Lines for 2013

By Steven Lassan, 8 months 3 days ago
The unsung heroes of every college football team are the men in the trenches. Offensive lines are often overlooked when it comes to preseason predictions, but this position is arguably the most important unit on the team.Stanford has churned out some of the nation’s best offensive lines in recent years, and the Cardinal take the top spot in Athlon’s rankings for 2013. Guard David...

AP Poll: Where BCS Champions Rank in the Preseason

By Braden Gall, 8 months 5 days ago
When we sit down to iron out our Top 25 Poll each year at Athlon Sports, we are trying to project the final year-end standings not build a preseason power poll. It might be a small and subtle difference but an important one to acknowledge.We don't necessarily think Louisville or Boise State is the 9th- or 11th-best team in the nation as they sit in our rankings, but rather, they will finish...

Critical games for 2013: Key stretches for the ACC

By David Fox, 8 months 6 days ago
Two ACC teams will play in the highest-profile games of the first week when Clemson hosts Georgia and Virginia Tech faces Alabama in Atlanta. The deciding conference title, though, will wait until mid-October. That’s when Clemson, Florida State and Miami will all begin key stretches that could determine their division title status.Clemson and Florida State again will duke it out for...

College Football's Top 30 Impact Freshmen for 2013

By Braden Gall, 8 months 6 days ago
Players like LaMichael James, Marcus Lattimore, Braxton Miller and Johnny Manziel have set the bar for freshmen awfully high in recent years with elite first-year performances.Manziel earned top frosh honors in the SEC a year ago while Oregon's Marcus Mariota, Miami's Duke Johnson, Penn State's Deion Barnes and TCU's Devonte Fields changed the landscape of their respective...

College Football's Top 25 Wide Receiving Corps for 2013

By Steven Lassan, 8 months 1 week ago
USC is limited on scholarships due to NCAA sanctions, but coach Lane Kiffin didn’t take any shortcuts on his receiving corps. The Trojans have the nation’s No. 1 receiver in junior Marqise Lee, while sophomore Nelson Agholor is due for a breakout year. But Alabama isn't too far behind USC, especially with the emergence of Amari Cooper last season.Ranking the receiving corps in...