The Fansided mothership will be releasing their preseason top 25 later today. I was offered a chance to cast a ballot, and I chose to do so. In a spirit of openness, below the jump you will find my complete ballot, along with a few explanatory notes at the top.
The first thing most of you–as fans of K-State–will notice is that I have the Cats in my Top 10. I am just not buying the de rigueur pessimism that seems to be in fashion among media-types right now. The team returns every important skill position player from last season’s 10-3 team. After shuffling the Cats around my ballot a bit (anywhere from 9 to 15), I just felt that a spot right on the edge of the Top 10 felt like the right fit.
You may also notice that I have seven Big 12 teams on my ballot. This re flects not only my view that the Big 12 is the deepest league in the nation, but also just how difficult it is going to be for KSU to repeat the success of 2011. But “difficult” is not the same as “impossible”, and I see KSU as a legitimate top 10 team, and the Big 12 with seven teams deserving of a spot in the top 25.
Regarding my top 5 votes, I feel much more comfortable with my vote for USC as #1 after hearing the news about Silas Redd. To be honest, I voted them #1 based on the anticipation that would happen. If he had surprised everyone and stayed at Penn State, I would have slid USC down a slot or two. LSU and Alabama are fairly easy picks for their respective slots. I have Oklahoma ranked fairly high in comparison with some of the preseason polls I’ve seen, but I’m comfortable with putting them there. And Oregon is Oregon–they’re going to be incredibly fast and talented.