2016 Sowegalive College Football Top 30 Countdown Preview

The 2016 college football season is almost upon us and it’s time again to countdown the top teams in the country according to Sowegalive.com. Beginning on Friday, July 22nd, Sowegalive will count down the top 30 teams in college football. Here are the top four teams that didn’t make the cut:

Wisconsin Badgers – Major transition is tough on any program & Wisconsin was the model of efficiency for two Wisconsin Logodecades under Barry Alvarez and Brett Bielema with six Rose Bowl appearances in that time. Since Bielema left prior to the 2013 season, Wisconsin has already had two head coaching changes and Alvarez has had to be the interim head coach in a bowl game twice. Wisconsin still has a talented roster but constant turnover at the top has taken it’s toll on the roster which has become a bit disheveled. Head Coach Paul Chryst is a former Badger player & assistant and will do everything in his power to get his alma mater back up to par with the powers in the Big Ten. The good news is that the Badgers are in the Big Ten West division which theoretically is the easier side of the conference. The bad news is that the Badgers play the three toughest opponents from the East division this season and two of them on the road. Wisconsin will be a quality team in 2016 but they will still be a notch below the elite in the conference.

West Virginia Mountaineers – Dana Holgorsen enters his 6th year in Morgantown and the West Virginia brass West Virginia Logo expects results if they intend to keep him around for a 7th season. The Mountaineers went 10-3 in Holgorsen’s first season but haven’t even sniffed double digit wins since including a four game losing streak against the cream of the Big 12 crop last October. West Virginia lost those four games by an average of just over 20 points so it’s safe to say that the Mountaineers don’t quite stack up with the elite teams in the Big 12. The good news is that the Mountaineers return quarterback Skyler Howard from last season who eclipsed the 3,000 yard mark along with most of the targets he enjoyed last season at wide receiver but defensively West Virginia loses 9 of their top 13 tacklers from last season. TCU, Oklahoma and Baylor all pay visits to Mountaineer Field in 2016 and West Virginia did well at home last season with a 6-1 record so they’ll have something to build on when the ‘big dawgs’ of the league come to the ‘holler’.

Florida Gators – Yes, I know the Gators won the SEC East last season and finished the season 10-3 but there are Florida Logoentirely too many questions on offense as to whether the Gators can repeat as division champions in 2016. Gone is their 1,100 yard running back, the top two receivers from last season have been suspended and graduated and currently there is no quarterback on the roster who has ever attempted a collegiate pass*. Florida Head Coach Jim McElwain is good coach, was a great coordinator and is a wiz with quarterbacks but it’s an uphill battle to piece together an offense with all of those factors and we haven’t even gotten into the problems on the offensive line where the Gators were taking open tryouts from the student body during the spring. Florida’s schedule isn’t the most difficult in the country or the conference but it is littered with difficult games like the final game in September when the Gators travel to Knoxville to face the preseason SEC East favorites Tennessee Volunteers, who Florida has beaten 11 years straight. There are just too many question marks about personnel for Florida to be in the Sowegalive Top 30.

Pittsburgh Panthers – It’s year two under Head Coach Pat Narduzzi and the Panthers had a surprisingly Pittsburgh - Script Logo 2016successful 2015 season despite losing reigning the ACC Player of the Year in running back James Conner who had 26 rushing touchdowns as a sophomore in 2014. Pittsburgh went 8-5 and played the likes of Iowa, North Carolina & Notre Dame close and beat a solid Louisville squad late in the year snapping a 4-game Cardinal winning streak. Conner will be back in 2016 but he’ll be sharing carries with reigning ACC Rookie of the Year Qadree Ollison who rushed for 1,158 yards and 11 touchdowns as a true freshman. The Panthers return their senior starting quarterback Nathan Peterman and eight starters on an above average defense. Pittsburgh won’t hit the meat of their ACC schedule until late October with back-to-back road games at Miami and Clemson to start November but September will be tough as well with a three game stretch against Penn State, Oklahoma State & North Carolina with the last two on the road. This will be a good team with veteran players but three of their wins in 2015 were against teams with losing records, so they’ll have to go out and prove it against solid competition in 2016.

*Correction: Sophomore quarterback Luke Del Rio went 8-for-18 for 141 yards in 2014 at Oregon State


#30 – Friday, July 22nd
#29 – Monday, July 25th
#28 – Tuesday, July 26th
#27 – Wednesday, July 27th
#26 – Thursday, July 28th
#25 – Friday, July 29th
#24 – Monday, August 1st
#23 – Tuesday, August 2nd
#22 – Wednesday, August 3rd
#21 – Thursday, August 4th
#20 – Friday, August 5th
#19 – Monday, August 8th
#18 – Tuesday, August 9th
#17 – Wednesday, August 10th
#16 – Thursday, August 11th
#15 – Friday, August 12th
#14 – Monday, August 15th
#13 – Tuesday, August 16th
#12 – Wednesday, August 17th
#11 – Thursday, August 18th
#10 – Friday, August 19th
#9 – Monday, August 22nd
#8 – Tuesday, August 23rd
#7 – Wednesday, August 24th
#6 – Thursday, August 25th
#5 – Friday, August 26th
#4 – Monday, August 29th
#3 – Tuesday, August 30th
#2 – Wednesday, August 31st
#1 – Thursday, September 1st

Be sure to stay logged on to Sowegalive.com for the daily Sowegalive College Football Top 30 Countdown!

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