As many of his teammates left school early to go to the NFL Draft, Alabama linebacker C.J. Mosley remained in Tuscaloosa for an extra year of seasoning.
That experience was apparent Saturday in the Crimson Tide’s biggest win of the season to date. Dominant defensive performances for Alabama aren’t rare, but Mosley led one of the Tide’s best efforts of the season in the 38-17 win over LSU.
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.
Injuries are a big part of any college football season. Just ask the coaching staffs at Maryland, Missouri or USC.The Terrapins lost four quarterbacks to season-ending injuries last year, while the Tigers played 2012 without the services of standout running back Henry Josey. USC lost defensive end Devon Kennard in the preseason, which played a role in the Trojans’ defense finishing seventh in the Pac-12 in yards allowed.
The Pac-12’s depth in the coaching ranks has increased in recent years, as this conference has made stellar hires on the gridiron, including Washington’s Chris Petersen, Oregon’s Willie Taggart and Colorado’s Mike MacIntyre.
After years of playing non-New Year’s Six games, USC returned to the Rose Bowl this past season with a bang. In one of the best bowl games of the year, the Trojans defeated Penn State 52-49 in a comeback for the ages, at least until the Super Bowl.