Tiger Rag's Early Bird Preseason Top 10

Sure enough, the BCS National Championship Game was played a little more than a week ago.

But it is time to take a very early look at who will be the national championship contenders for the upcoming season. Here, Tiger Rag passes along a very early preseason top 10. However, like all things in college football, teams can change in a blink.

1. GEORGIA The Bulldogs probably played the best football over the stretch and would have a legitimate gripe for a shot at the national title had they won their division or conference. The combination of quarterback Matthew Stafford and running back Knowshon Moreno might be the nation's best.


2. USC Right behind the Bulldogs were the USC Trojans in terms of teams feeling slighted at the end of 2007. The Trojans played well in the second half of the season, but the loss to Stanford proved to be too costly. USC returns tons of talent and its coach.

3. OKLAHOMA The Sooners have been an utter disappointment the last two seasons by horribly underachieving in the postseason. Losses to Boise State and West Virginia in back-to-back bowl games should light a fire under sensational quarterback Sam Bradford and Co.

4. OHIO STATE Could the third time be the charm? The Buckeyes have been embarrassed in two straight national championship game appearances. Will 2008 be the year for the Bucks? Ohio State returns plenty of talent, but this ranking could be affected by the NFL Draft.

5. FLORIDA The Gators were awfully young (but talented) on the defensive side of the ball in 2007. A year of experience could do wonders for the defense. The offense is set with lots of speed and Heisman winner Tim Tebow returning. The Gators have something to prove after bowl game embarrassment.

6. LSU This might seem a little lofty to some people's preseason picks, but the Tigers are the defending national champions. That should stand for something. There are lots of weapons on offense, and Ryan Perrilloux seems ready to lead. The defense will be re-tooled, especially in the secondary.

7. TEXAS The Longhorns aren't on many people's radar heading into 2008, but this will be the wildcard of the Tiger Rag poll. It has been a few years since Texas was in the mix, and it's time for Mack Brown to appease a restless fan base.

8. WEST VIRGINIA The Pat White show continues, this time accompanied by the speedy Noel Devine. Can the Mountaineers maintain their Big East dominance without Rich Rodriguez? That didn't seem to matter in the Fiesta Bowl.

9. MISSOURI One of two Cinderella teams from the Big 12 North isn't going to fall off the college football map. Missouri returns plenty of talent, and quarterback Chase Daniel will be a serious Heisman contender.

10. KANSAS The clock didn't strike midnight for Cinderella Kansas with an Orange Bowl win. Mark Mangino's Jayhawks, along with quarterback Todd Reesing, are back to prove 2007 was no fluke.

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