Ranking all 130 college football head coaches is an impossible task. But with the 2017 season right around the corner, Athlon Sports is continuing its countdown to Week 1 by evaluating all 130 coaches and ranking them from best to worst.
The 2017 college football season is just around the corner, and it’s time to honor the best of the best for the upcoming year. The 2017 season features plenty of big names returning to the gridiron, including a standout group of quarterbacks.
Ranking all 130 college football teams is no easy task, but with the first Saturday of action on Aug. 26 approaching quickly, it’s never too early to see how every FBS program stacks up for 2017. At the top, Alabama leads the way as Athlon’s projected national champion. The Crimson Tide lost to Clemson on the final play of last year’s title game, and even though both sides of the ball have a few holes to fill, coach Nick Saban’s program is still the team to beat. Ohio State is a close No.
San Diego State has claimed back-to-back Mountain West titles, and coach Rocky Long’s team begins 2017 in great shape to repeat. The Aztecs should be solid on defense once again, with the offense expected to lean heavily on the one-two punch of Rashaad Penny and Juwan Washington to replace Donnel Pumphrey at running back.
Colorado State went 7-6 in head coach Mike Bobo’s second season, but the Rams could be poised to contend in the Mountain West Mountain Division this fall. The offense returns plenty of firepower while the defense brings back eight starters and a linebacker that missed all of 2016 because of a health issue. There are concerns along the defensive line and in the secondary, but Colorado State should be able to score enough points to earn a trip to a fifth straight bowl game, at minimum.
College football’s 2017 season starts on Aug. 26 and concludes with the national championship on Jan. 8 in Atlanta. The season is still a few months away, but it's never too early to project and rank college football's top 25 teams.
Predictions for any FBS conference and all 130 college football teams are an inexact science. Some teams are just a bigger mystery than others or a hard program to get a read on for the upcoming year. Coaching changes, transfers, players returning from injury, scheme tweaks or just overall depth chart concerns make any preseason prediction difficult for a number of teams.
The Mountain West features an intriguing group of teams vying for the league title in 2017, so it’s no surprise Wyoming, San Diego State, Boise State and Colorado State lead the way in all-conference selections. The Aztecs feature the most players selected to the All-Mountain West team with 14, followed by Wyoming and Colorado State tied for second at 12.