Top 25 teams and games No. 22 Boise State
Published: Sunday, June 8, 2008 at 6:01 a.m.
Last Modified: Monday, June 9, 2008 at 12:15 a.m.
No. 22 Boise State
The buzz: The Broncos won 10 games a year ago, but didn't win the WAC so you know they will be hungry this season. One magazine had Boise State 47th in its rankings, but when you combine coaching, talent and schedule, there is no way that's going to happen.
Difference-maker: It seems as if Ian Johnson has been playing at Boise for about 10 years. The talented tailback has scored 46 touchdowns in his career and needs to be productive this season to take the heat off a new quarterback.
The upside: You really have to like Boise State's receivers and the ground game has more than just Johnson. The Broncos have never had trouble scoring points whether they are on the blue field or not. And kicker Kyle Brotzman is as good as they come.
The downside: A new quarterback is never good especially when he's replacing Taylor Tharp, who was a machine. That quarterback has a new offensive line in front of him and he won't be able to live with three-and-outs because the Boise defense is inconsistent at best.
Schedule factor: It's the usual suspects for the Broncos with two non-conference games sticking out — at Oregon and at Southern Miss. If Boise can get past Oregon early, the Broncos will be back in the national picture. Southern Miss is going through a transition year. Win those two and 12-0 is possible.
Top 25 games — No. 22: Florida at Tennessee
Where: Neyland Stadium; Knoxville, Tenn.
When: Sept. 20.
Why it's sexy: There is always a touch of sex appeal to this one. Even if Tennessee lacks the glamour of the 1990s, the Vols are defending SEC East champs and want to teach Urban Meyer (now 3-0 against Smokey) a lesson. UF enjoys a rare off-week before taking on UT.
Pre-season buzz: Georgia is getting all of the love, but Florida is the hot girlfriend in the passenger seat. If that's the case, Tennessee is in need of a makeover. The Vols are shaky in a lot of areas, but the Big Orange world would be right with a thumping of the Gators and they'd get off Phillip Fulmer's back for a week.
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