College Football: The Washington Times Top 124

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1. Southern California

Upside: Matt Barkley is back and has unfinished business after the Trojans’ two-year bowl ban

Downside: Scholarship reductions leave Lane Kiffin’s team vulnerable to injury and attrition

2. Alabama

Upside: Nick Saban’s juggernaut could simply plug-and-play its way back to national title game

Downside: Depleted defense can’t possibly match last year’s eye-popping numbers

3. Oklahoma

Upside: With a year left, Landry Jones (12,379 yards) is already the Sooners’ career passing leader

Downside: Holes in defense need to be fixed to survive unforgiving Big 12 attacks

4. Louisiana State

Upside: The Mad Hatter has a fine cast of characters back from a 13-1 run to chase a national title

Downside: QB is a question — again — and a Honey Badger-less defense is just a tick less scary

5. Oregon

Upside: Chip Kelly is still around, and Andrew Luck is not at Stanford; a Pac-12 North repeat is likely

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