No. 20 Texas
The Buzz: Offense has been a concern for the Longhorns over the past couple of seasons. In 2013, that won’t change. The program loses offensive coordinator Bryan Harsin and will need to figure out the quarterback situation with David Ash and Case McCoy. The run game is strong with Joe Bergeron and Johnathan Gray while the defense could be the strength of this team once again.
No. 21 Boise State
The Buzz: Boise State managed an 11-win season despite losing quarterback Kellen Moore last season. That’s because Chris Petersen put together one of the best defenses in the country. Unfortunately, the Broncos lose at least six starters from that squad. That means the offense will need to pick up the slack.
No. 22 Michigan
The Buzz: For the first time since 2010, Denard Robinson won’t be leading the Wolverines offense. Instead, that honor will fall on Devin Gardner, who filled in for the injured Robinson during the final few weeks of 2012. His performance showed a lot of promise for Michigan’s offense in 2013. Once again, the schedule is tough with match-ups against Notre Dame, Michigan State, Nebraska and Ohio State.
No. 23 Wisconsin
The Buzz: No program has seen more turnover than Wisconsin which lost its head coach and several key assistant coaches. Former Utah State coach Gary Andersen will take over and will have several big decisions to consider with the loss of quarterback Curt Phillips and running back Montee Ball on offense. The Badgers will be looking for their fourth straight Big Ten title.
No. 24 Baylor
The Buzz: If Art Briles and the Baylor faithful hope for another exciting run, they will need a monster performance out of running back Lache Seastruck, who has already indicated that he is gunning for the Heisman Trophy. The biggest questions surrounding this team will be who replaces Nick Florence at quarterback in 2013.
No. 25 USC
The Buzz: This could be a make-or-break season for Lane Kiffin at USC. The Trojans are looking to recover from a disappointing 2012 season and will have several chances in 2013 including a new defensive coordinator and a new quarterback. Matt Barkley is gone and that opens the door for Max Wittek, who saw limited action last season.
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