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Old 24.02.2015, 07:41 AM
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Danelkits Danelkits is offline
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Default 5 Fresh Faces for College Football 2015

Parity is the lifeblood that flows through sports these days. Even in the National Basketball Association whispers of a 2015 championship are boldly being bandied about in a dozen different cities. But one place where the big dogs never stop eating is college football. Even before spring practice 5Dimes has released early odds on 2015 conference title winners. The usual suspects are all gathered as favorites: Alabama in the SEC, Oregon in the Pac 12, Ohio State in the Big Ten. But only the national champion Buckeyes are going off as less than even money favorites at -150.

Fans love the little teams that could and sports writers polls fall all over themselves to push the Mississippis and the Mississippi States of the world to the top of the rankings while oddsmakers still list Alabama as touchdown favorites when the sides actually meet. But this could be the year new faces steal conference honors. Who is ready?

Georgia Tech (ACC, +400)

No one save Ohio State was playing better than the 11-win Yellow Jackets at the end of the season. They splattered Clemson, upset arch rival Georgia, outplayed Florida State in a two-point loss and overwhelmed Mississippi State in the Orange Bowl. Georgia Tech lost most of its skill players on offense but Florida State is down Jameis Winston. Clemson has been tabbed the conference favorite but the Tigers will be rebuilding an entire defense. It better be ready when the Yellow Jackets invade Memorial Stadium on October 10.

UCLA (Pac 12, +450)

UCLA has been labeled a comer for several years and might have arrived last year if not for a late-season loss to Stanford. Star quarterback Brett Hundley has cast his lot with the professionals but every other starter on offense is back as well as 50 players who were freshmen and sophomores on the 2014 squad.

USC (Pac 12, +450)

Oddsmakers have thrown a blanket over the Los Angeles schools to unseat Oregon. Few teams have more talent than the Trojans but on game day USC has been plagued by a lack of depth from scholarship restrictions and injuries. Some road games for the sparsely populated Trojans sideline (55 scholarship athletes went to Boston College last year) looked downright comical. If USC can finish games that have gotten away in the past with another highly rated recruiting class they could return to the top of the Pac 12.

LSU (SEC, +1000)

According the sports books there will be at least five teams standing between LSU and the conference title. The Tigers and Les Miles are a defense-minded bunch in a college football world gone spread offense-crazy but maybe the Tigers, who only allowed 54 points in regulation over their last four SEC games in 2014 will lead a return to scoreboard sanity.

Arkansas (SEC, +1200)

For feel-good turn-around stories the eyes of the college football world will be on Fayetteville after the Razorbacks, who had lost their first 13 SEC conference games under coach Bret Bielema, began tossing around shutouts against nationally ranked teams after narrow losses to Alabama and Mississippi State, ranked #1 at the time. Arkansas then wrapped up its season with a tidy demolition of the University of Texas in their hometown Texas Bowl. Last place in 2014, first place in 2015. Seventeen returning starters say so.

Last edited by Danelkits; 24.02.2015 at 07:44 AM. Reason: some mistake
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