1. USC – The Trojans lost an away game early but steamrolled their way through the rest of their schedule in what turned out to be the best conference in college football.
2. Utah – The Utes had a shot, but playing Alabama in the Sugar Bowl wasn’t the marquee matchup they needed. A victory over USC, Texas, or Oklahoma would have launched the Utes into the top spot.
3. Florida – The Gators rode the legs and unsportsmanlike penalties of Tim Tebow all the way to the BCS Championship game, but they lost a home game to Mississippi.
4. Oklahoma – Bob Stoops is a heckuva coach until January. In the Sooners defense, they were shorthanded at the BCS Title Game, but they at least should have put up a fight.
5. TCU – A road loss to Oklahoma tripped up the Frogs early. Only a close loss to number two Utah marred a fantastic finish by the Frogs.
6. Texas – The Horns showed that they belong with the big boys throughout the season, but almost lost an embarrassing game to Ohio State in the Fiesta Bowl.
7. Oregon – The fashion conscious Ducks turned on the offense late in the season and were rolling by season’s end.
8. Boise State – Only a bowl setback to number 5 TCU kept Boise from a perfect season.
9. Texas Tech – The pirates in Lubbock finished up their best season ever with a disappointing bowl loss to Mississippi. Frankly, they seemed unmotivated after being left out of the big party.
10. Penn State – After getting destroyed by a disinterested USC team that didn’t even try in the second half, Penn State remained in the top 10 to cap off a brilliant season for Joe Paterno.
11. Mississippi – Lost 4 games but turned in monumental upset victories over Florida and Texas Tech.
12. Alabama – Winning ugly all year, the Tide finally ran out of luck as they were beat up pretty bad the last two games by a couple of top 10 teams.
13. Oklahoma State – A talented team that seemed to lose some games due to questionable coaching, the Cowboys had a nice run through the Big 12.
14. Virginia Tech – A team in disarray early in the season, the Hokies seemed to find some cohesiveness and a quarterback as the season moved on.
15. Oregon State – The Beavers were hurt by injuries, but proved how dangerous they could be at full strength by beating the mighty Trojans.
16. Florida State – The Seminoles have speed to burn on defense and are another team that seemed to improve throughout the season.
17. Cincinnati – The Big East champions predictably struggled in their bowl game.
18. Georgia – The Dawgs had a ton of talent on offense but could never put it together. They should be a top ten team on paper, but something is preventing them from meeting their expectations.
19. Missouri – Chase Daniel’s weight gain late in the season seemed to affect the Tigers’ offense. Defensively, Mizzou struggled all season.
20. West Virginia – The Mountaineers struggled to implement a more air oriented attack, but could have gone undefeated with a less than stellar schedule.