College Football Preview Series: the 32 teams we’ll cover this summer

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It’s already that time of year when this site shifts more into pop culture, media and entertainment mode. What did you think I did when there was no football and basketball? Well, Spurs vs Heat Finals? Yawn.Been there. Done that.

And the Blackhawks have obviously jumped the shark now. So hockey and NBA are both done for me for this season. That summer lull of dullness also means I start the way to early college football previews.

Here’s who we’re previewing and why. 32 teams just like in the NFL.

red grange

We used to call this series the 77 in 77. As I previewed 77 college football teams in 77 days. 77 was the jersey number of the greatest player in football history, Red Grange, the “Wheaton Ice Man” or the “Galloping Ghost.”

Grange attended my alma mater, the University of Illinois. When superstar he was done with school in the 1920s, professional football leagues were considered an abomination at worst; a pathetic joke at best. But Grange, along with fellow Illini George Halas, broke from tradition to give professional football the star power and leadership infrastructure it badly needed to establish itself. The duo combined to give the game marketing appeal and marketing acumen. And we know how this product has panned out.

Anyways, doing 77 teams means you’re stuck covering a lot of schools where people only care about basketball, the program has fallen on hard times, and mid-majors that no one cares about. And I don’t do mid-majors. I can’t waste the time on low interest material.

So instead I narrowed it down to 32: the top 5 overall, the entire Big Ten, all the opponents of the teams that I cover regularly, and others with a somewhat interesting storyline.

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So here’s who I’ll preview. And their ranking according to Lindy’s. Yes, the college football preview magazines are already out! Just 58 days until the college football preseason starts (Big Ten Media Day) 95 until the college football season kicks off.

107 Texas State

99 USF

97 Western Kentucky

92 Purdue

82 Cal

74 Rutgers

71 Northwestern

69 indiana

68 Illinois

59 Maryland

52 Minnesota

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50 Northern Illinois

38 Penn State

34 Bowling Green

26 Iowa

23 Washington

22 Texas

21 Nebraska

20 Michigan

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19 Notre Dame

16 Kansas St

15 USC

14 Wisconsin

12 Georgia

11 LSU

8 UCLA

7 Michigan State

5 Ohio State

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4 Oregon

3 Oklahoma

2 Alabama

1 Florida State

Paul M. Banks owns The Sports Bank.net, an affiliate of Fox Sports. He’s also a frequent guest on national talk radio. Banks, a former contributor to NBC Chicago and the Washington Times, has been featured in numerous outlets including NFL.com, Forbes and the History Channel. President Barack Obama follows him on Twitter (@paulmbanks)

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