Southeastern Conference and the Atlantic Coast Conference College Football season kickoff is a little less than a month away.
Most college football sports writers hope a team other than the SEC or ACC will win it all.
There are two SEC teams who are not even near the top: Tennessee (4-8 last year), and Vanderbilt (5-7 last year). It's feared they will repeat last year’s performance, and it seems that all the good players out of the state of Tennessee have gone farther south or east to play football.
Most of the sport writers are looking at Notre Dame or Oklahoma to win the National College Playoff. I’ll call it as I did last year (and a lot of you said that can’t happen, nor would it happen): Alabama versus Georgia in 2017, and this year it's Alabama versus Clemson.
There were other things I said last year:
Watch the UCF Knights. They went undefeated and our governor signed a proclamation declaring the University of Central Florida the undisputed best team in the state of Florida - after beating Auburn (who beat Georgia and Alabama in regular season) in the Peach Bowl 34 to 27. This left Florida and Florida State at a standstill, plus was a big vote for the UCF team to be in the National Playoff.
Did you know that UCF broke every attendance record each week? And for their game with Memphis on Dec. 2, 2017, even Disney World attendance was down by 25 percent. People were at the game.
“Keep your eyes on this team.” The Florida Atlantic Owls are coached by Lane Kiffin. He spent one year as a Tennessee head coach, three years as USC head coach, four years as Alabama's offensive coach. He is now declaring his Owls a big contender.
Last year they were 11-3, but he now wants to have his team play any SEC team at home. This year they're opening with Oklahoma then Air Force. I’ll bet the Owls will win one of those games.
Here is what I think is going to happen in the SEC/ACC for 2018:
Tennessee new coach Jeremy Pruitt can beat Florida at Knoxville. This could be a very messy game, but the Tennessee Vols win it by one point.
Georgia again has a great year.
Mississippi State becomes the upsetting college of the nation.
Alabama again is in the playoffs with Georgia, Clemson and Miami.
Alabama will face Clemson for the national championship.
Florida State will play over its head, but lose the ones that count.
Virginia Tech is still looking for that big game to turn things around; it's Notre Dame at home
Just about everyone goes to a bowl game in the ACC. If you get the chance, take a good look at Clemson's schedules.
See you next week!
Bill Everett is a member of the Military Order of the Purple Heart. He lives in Baker.