8 min read

Atlantic Coast Conference: 

Atlantic: Clemson Tigers

Coastal: Pittsburgh Panthers

 Winner: Clemson Tigers


OPOY: Sean Tucker, RB, Syracuse 

DPOY: Myles Murphy, DE, Clemson

COY: Dave Doeren, NC State

Impact Transfer: Kedon Slovis, QB, Pittsburgh

After a season worse than expected last year, going 10-3 with a victory against Iowa State in the Cheez-It Bowl, the Tigers are looking to bounce back and return to their dominant selfs. The Clemson Tigers did not lose a lot of players in the offseason, as they only lost 3 offensive starters, and 5 defensive starters. Clemson brings back a lot of their star players including their one two punch at running back in Will Shipley and Kobe Pace. Defensively, Clemson brings back Myles Murphy, who led the Tigers in sacks with 7 last season, Clemson brings back another great piece on their defensive line in Bryan Bresee who eats up blocks and stuffs the run, the Tigers also return linebacker Trenton Simpson, who was 2nd in sacks with 6 and 3rd in tackles with 65 last season. Last season the thing that held Clemson back the most was quarterback play, even though their starting quarterback that struggled, D.J. Uiagalelei is slotted as the week one starter for the Tigers, but the Tigers have a great backup quarterback in true freshman, Cade Klubnik who can replace Uiagalelei if he struggles, which is something Dabo Swinney and the Clemson Tigers could not do last season. The Tigers return 4 out of their 5 starters from their great offensive line, who only allowed 21 sacks all of last season, which was 27th in the country, to protect whoever ends up as their quarterback. The Clemson Tigers lost their offensive coordinator, Tony Elliott, as he took the head coaching job for the Virginia Cavaliers. The Tigers promoted quarterbacks coach Brandon Streeter to be their new offensive coordinator, Streeter has done a great job in helping the development of the Clemson quarterback since he got this role in 2015. Streeter helped develop starting NFL quarterbacks, such as the 12th overall pick in the 2017 NFL Draft, and 3 time Pro Bowler, Deshaun Watson, and the first overall pick in the 2021 NFL Draft, Trevor Lawrence. Even though Clemson’s offensive coordinator left, their offensive coaching staff is still pretty intact from last season. The Tigers lost another big piece of their coaching staff, as Clemson defensive coordinator Brent Venables left the Tigers to take the head coaching job for the Oklahoma Sooners, but Clemson promoted special teams and formerly safeties coach, MIckey Conn to become co-defensive coordinator with Wes Goodwin, who was formerly a senior defensive assistant with Clemson. Mickey Conn brings great experience with over 20 years of coaching defensive, he has also helped create one of the best defenses, especially secondaries in college football over the past 5 years. Wes Goodwin has less experience than Conn, but Goodwin has gotten high praise from the likes of former NFL coach and one time Super Bowl champion as a head coach, Bruce Arians and by Clemson head coach Dabo Swinney. Even though the defensive coordinators have changed, the rest of the defensive coaching staff has barely changed, and the group of defensive players Clemson has is still similar for the group last year, that allowed 14.85 points per game, 96.3 rushing yards per game and 305.5 total yards per game, which was all top 10 in the country last season.

Big 12 Conference: 

Regular Season First Place: Oklahoma Sooners

Regular Season Second Place: Baylor Bears 

Winner: Oklahoma Sooners


OPOY: Bijan Robinson, RB, Texas 

DPOY: Collin Oliver, DE, Oklahoma State

COY: Brent Venables, Oklahoma 

Impact Transfer: Dillon Gabriel, QB, Oklahoma

After going 11-2 last season, with a victory against the Oregon Ducks in the Valero Alamo Bowl, the Sooners lost their head coach Lincoln Riley, who took the head coaching job for the USC Trojans. Even though the Sooners lost their head coach, Lincoln Riley, Oklahoma brought in another great coach in Brent Venables, who has led one of the best defenses in the country for 10 years straight. Venables won the Broyles Award for the nation's best assistant coach in the 2016 season. Venables also brought Ted Rood to Oklahoma to be his defensive coordinator, Roof has 35 years of collegiate coaching experience, with his most recent job being a defensive analyst under Venables at Clemson. The Sooners lost a lot of talent to the NFL Draft. In the NFL Draft, as Oklahoma lost their two best linebackers last season, in Nik Bonitto who was second in sacks for the Sooners, and Brian Asamoah who led the Sooners in tackles last season, and Oklahoma lost 2 of their safeties in Pat Fields, and the Sooners leader in interceptions last season, Delarrian Turner-Yell. The Sooners also lost two great pieces on their defensive line in Perrion Winfrey and Isaiah Thomas who led the Sooners in sacks, and their leading rusher, in Kennedy Brooks. The Sooners also lost a lot of talent to the aswell transfer portal, losing there two quarterbacks, in Caleb Williams transferring to USC, who started in Oklahoma’s final 7 games, and Spencer Rattler transferring to South Carolina, who started in 17 total games with Sooners during the 2020 and 2021 college football seasons. Oklahoma also lost 3 of there top weapons, in Jadon Haselwood, who led the Sooners in receptions and receiving touchdowns last season, who is transferring to Arkansas, Mario Williams transferring to USC, and Austin Stogner, who is a good blocker for being a tight end, and is transferring to South Carolina. Even though Oklahoma lost a lot of talent through the transfer portal, the Sooners also used the transfer portal to their advantage, as they got their new starting quarterback, Dillon Gabriel from UCF, who was the starter for UCF for 2 seasons and would have started for UCF for the majority of last season if not for getting injured. Dillon Gabriel has been one of the most efficient passers in the country during his time at UCF having a touchdown to interception ratio of 5. The Sooners also got a lot of talent on the offensive line from the transfer portal, including getting tackle McKade Mettauer from California, who earned All Pac-12 second team honors (PFF) in 2021, and Tyler Guyton from TCU. In addition to bolster their offensive line, the Sooner strengthened their weapons for Dillon Gabriel, by getting wide receiver LV Bunkley-Shelton from Arizona State, wide receiver J.J. Hester from Missouri, who was injured for some significant time last season, but when healthy was is a great deep threat that averaged 18.8 yards per reception, and tight end Daniel Parker from Missouri, who also missed some time with injury last season, but when healthy Parker was large part of Missouri’s successful run game over the past 3 years because of his great run blocking. Oklahoma is adding these weapons to a receiving core that already has a great deep threat, averaging 22 yards per reception in Marvin Mims, who also led the Sooners in receiving yards last season with 705 yards. Oklahoma did not only make improvements to their team using transfer portal offensive, the Sooners also made improvements to their team defensively using the transfer portal. The Sooners improved their secondary by adding Trey Morrison from North Carolina who will add experience to the Sooners as he started in 42 games for the Tar Heels during his 4 years in Chapel Hill, C.J. Coldon from Wyoming is also joining the Sooners, and Kani Walker from Louisville is transferring to Oklahoma. As well as improving there secondary, the Sooners improved there defensive line through the transfer portal, such as gaining Jeffery Johnson, who transferred from Tulane who will step in as the new Sooners nose tackle, the Sooners also gained two edge rushers, in Jonah Laulu from Hawaii and T.D. Roof from Appalachian State.

Big 10 Conference:
East: Ohio State Buckeyes

West: Purdue Boilermakers

Winner: Ohio State Buckeyes


OPOY: C.J. Stroud, QB, Ohio State 

DPOY: Riley Moss, DB, Iowa

COY: Jeff Brohm, Purdue 

Impact Transfer: Olusegun Oluwatimi, OG, Michigan

The Ohio State Buckeyes went 11-2 last season, with a win against the Utah Utes in the Rose Bowl. Ohio State lost some talent during the draft, especially on the offensive side of the ball, losing three of there top weapons, losing wide receiver Chris Olave who led the Buckeyes in touchdowns last season and was apart of the All-Big Ten first team in both 2020 and 2021, the Buckeyes also lost wide receiver Garrett Wilson, who was apart of the All-Big Ten first team in 2020 and the All-Big Ten second team in 2021, and the Buckeyes lost tight end Jeremy Ruckert, who was always a reliable target for catching a dump down and fighting for additional yardage, or for clearing out space for deep routes that the Buckeyes love to run. The Buckeyes also lost two big pieces of there offensive line during the draft, in Thayer Munford, who was apart of the AFCA All-American first team in 2021, along with that, Munford was a two time member of the All-Big Ten first team in 2020 and 2021, the Buckeyes also lost Nicholas Petit-Frere who was named to the All-American second team in 2021 and the All-Big ten first team in 2021 as well, both Munford and Petit-Frere helped Ohio State become one of the best rushing offenses over the past two years. Even though Ohio State lost some offensive players to the NFL, a lot of the Buckeyes offensive core is still intact, as Ohio State still has their superstar quarterback, C.J. Stroud who finished 4th in the 2022 Heisman Trophy voting, Stroud put up 4,435 passing yards, 44 passing touchdowns and completing 71.9% of his passes, which were all top 5 in the country last season, Ohio State also brings back there star running, TreVeyon Henderson and Jaxon Smith-Njigba, Henderson as a true freshman put up 1,248 rushing yards, averaging 6.8 yards per carry, with 15 rushing touchdowns, earning him a spot on the All-Big Ten second team, Jaxon Smith Njigba lead the stacked Buckeyes receiving core in receiving yards and receptions, with 1,606 receiving yards and 95 receptions, which were both top 10 in the country, and earning him a spot on the All-Big Ten third team. The Buckeyes also have some good pieces returning on their offensive line, including Paris Johnson Jr. who is one of the best run blockers in the country, and Dawand Jones who is an absolute mauler while both pass and run blocking. Ohio State lost less talent in the draft on defense, but they still lost some players, such as Haskell Garrett, who led the Buckeyes in sacks last season, Garrett was also a part of the All-American Second Team in 2020 and a part of the All-Big Ten First Team in 2021. The Buckeyes also lost defensive end Tyreke Smith to the NFL, and cornerback Sevyn Banks who transferred to LSU. The Buckeyes return their leader in tackles and interceptions, Ronnie Hickman, who is a very high IQ safety, the Buckeyes also return defensive end Zach Harrison, who is a ridiculous athlete off of the edge. Ohio State also brought in Oklahoma State defensive coordinator, Jim Knowles as their defensive coordinator, who has 35 years of collegiate coaching experience. Knowles has led the Cowboys to a top and improving defense for the past 4 years, including coaching a Cowboys defense that was a top 3 defense last season.

Pac-12 Conference:
Regular Season First Place: Utah Utes

Regular Season Second Place: USC Trojans 

Winner: Utah Utes


OPOY:Caleb Williams, QB, USC Trojans

DPOY: Noah Sewell, LB, Oregon Ducks 

COY: Kyle Whittingham, Utah Utes

Impact Transfer: Caleb WIlliams, QB, USC Trojans

The Utah Utes are coming off of a strong 2021 season, going 10-4, while winning the Pac-12 championship game against the Oregon Ducks and losing in the Rose Bowl to Ohio State. The Utes are led by quarterback Cameron Rising who is a good dual-threat quarterback with good running ability for a quarterback, and running back Tavion Thomas. Thomas, who was third in the country in rushing touchdowns last season with 21, is a patient rusher who takes what the offensive line gives him. Rising has solid weapons, in tight ends Brant Kuithe and Dalton Kincaid, Kuithe is a good receiver when running short and medium routes, the Utes On the other hand, Kincaid has great body control which allows him to be a good deep threat and red zone threat. Lastly, the Utes have Devaughn Vele who is a good deep threat, who averaged 16.9 yards per reception, with good speed. The Utes also have a good offensive line group, led by Braeden Daniels who is very versatile on the offensive line and has a good anchor. The Utes offensive line gives Cameron Rising time to throw in the pocket and open up holes in the run game to make life easier for Tavion Thomas. The Utah Utes did not lose a lot of talent during the offseason, but the Utes lost two of their most important players on their team, in linebacker Devin Lloyd, and safety Vonte Davis . Devin Lloyd, who led the Utes in interceptions and tackles, and was second in sacks for Utah last season, was a vital piece in Utah’s success last season, as he is a great leader, with amazing football IQ. Davis, who was also a very smart football player, with good reaction time. Lastly, the Utes lost linebacker, Nephi Sewell, who was 2nd in tackles for Utah, and was a good coverage linebacker next to Devin Lloyd. To replace both Sewell and Lloyd, the Utes got linebacker Mohamoud Diabate who transferred to Utah from Florida. Diabate does not exactly replace the coverage ability of Lloyd and Sewell, but Diabate is a good pass rusher with great quickness off the edge. The Utes also return two key members of their secondary in Cole Bishop and Clark Phillps. Bishop is a good pass rusher from the secondary as he had 3 sacks last season. On the other hand, Clark Phillps who has great athleticism to stick with defenders, and good recovery speed. Having a lot of returning players on one of the best defenses in the country last season, with an improving offense with a great quarterback and running back, should mean that the Utes are successful like they were last season.

Southeastern Conference:

East: Georgia Bulldogs 

West: Alabama Crimson Tide

Winner: Alabama Crimson Tide


OPOY: Bryce Young, QB, Alabama Crimson Tide

DPOY: Will Anderson Jr., Alabama Crimson Tide

COY: Lane Kiffin, Ole Miss Rebels

Impact Transfer: Spencer Rattler, QB, South Carolina Gamecocks

The Alabama Crimson Tide have been one of, if not the biggest dynasty in college football during the CFP era, and are looking to keep that dynasty going. The Alabama Crimson Tide kept their dominant run going last season, as they went 13-2, while winning the SEC championship game and making the College Football Playoffs, losing in the National Championship game. Alabama had some key losses, especially on offense, losing Evan Neal who was first team All-SEC last season and an absolute mauler on the offensive line. The Crimson Tide offense also lost some key weapons, in running back Brian Robinson who was the leading rusher for Alabama, who had great power and fought for extra yardage, and the Crimson Tide lost wide receivers John Metchie III and Jameson Williams. John Metchie put up 96 receptions, which was first for the Crimson Tide last season, 1,142 yards, and 8 touchdowns, before he tore his ACL in the SEC championship game, Metchie was a reliable target that caught almost any ball thrown his way with his incredible hands, while Jameson Williams, who put up 1,572 yards, 15 touchdowns, which were both top 5 in the country and averaged 19.9 yards per reception, which was top 10 in the country, was a big play waiting to happen with his insane speed and good deep route running. Even though Alabama lost more talent on offense, they still lost some vital members of their defense to the NFL Draft, including Phildarian Mathis, who was a great run defender and pass rusher at defensive tackle for Alabama, having 8 sacks which was second for Alabama, and apart of the All-SEC second team, the Crimson Tide also lost Christian Harris who add versatility to the linebacking core of Alabama, as he could play on the ball or off the ball. Alabama also lost some talent in the secondary, losing Jalyn Armour-Davis and Josh Jobe. Armour-Davis led the Crimson Tide in interceptions with great speed, and he was a part of the All-SEC second team last season. Jobe was a good all around coverage player, but he did not have athleticism like Armour-Davis. Even though Alabama lost some talent to the NFL, the Crimson Tide were very active in the transfer portal and prioritized replacing their losses, by getting a new starting running back in Jahmyr Gibbs, who is a good all around rusher who could also catch the ball out of the backfield, to replace Brian Robinson, and two new receivers in Tyler Harrell and Jermaine Burton, who are both great deep threats, to help Alabama’s receiving core after Jameson Williams and John Metchie III left. Alabama also brought in Tyler Steen, who is aggressive on the offensive line, to take over Evan Neal's spot on the offensive line after he went to the NFL, and Alabama brought in Eli Ricks, who is a great corner in zone coverage, to help replace the losses in Alabama’s secondary. The Alabama Crimson Tide also have a great group of returning players, including, having 2 of the best players in the country, in quarterback Bryce Young and edge Will Anderson Jr. Bryce Young, who is the reigning Heisman Trophy winner, put up 4,872 yards and 47 touchdowns, which were both 2nd in the country last season. Will Anderson Jr., who came 5th in Heisman Trophy voting last year, put up 17.5 sacks and 31 tackles for loss, which were both first in the country last season. Also returning for the Crimson Tide are linebackers Henry To’oto’o, who led Alabama in tackles last season, and was a part of the All-SEC second team, and Dallas Turner who is a great pass rusher for Alabama who has a lot of different pass rushing moves. In addition to To’oto’o and Turner coming back for Alabama, defensive tackle DJ Dale and defensive backs Jordan Battle are returning to Alabama. DJ Dale will have more opportunities this year with Phildarian Mathis going to the NFL. Jordan Battle, who tied for the most interceptions for Alabama last season and was a part of the All-SEC first team last season, is amazing in man coverage.