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Spring Top 25 (cont.)

Posted: Tuesday April 25, 2006 10:43AM; Updated: Tuesday April 25, 2006 6:22PM
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NCAA Football Power Rankings, Pt. II
Rank LW School
11 -- Key returnees: QB Chris Leak, WR Dallas Baker, LB Brandon Siler, DT Marcus Thomas

Spring star: WR Cornelius Ingram. The converted quarterback emerged as one of the Gators' top playmakers.

Lowdown: Leak, who will be a senior, looks more comfortable in Urban Meyer's offense, though heralded frosh Tim Tebow outplayed him in the spring game. The defense figures to be solid yet again. Last year's weaknesses -- the tailbacks and offensive line (which loses four starters) -- remain major question marks.
12 -- Key returnees: QB Drew Weatherford, RB Lorenzo Booker, WR Greg Carr, LB Buster Davis

Spring star: LB Lawrence Timmons. Ernie Sims' hard-hitting successor was named most dominant defender of the spring.

Lowdown: Weatherford, who will be a second-year starter, made major strides this spring, throwing just one interception in scrimmages, and the defense, despite losing seven starters, looks solid again. The question is whether the offensive line will improve enough to bolster FSU's sagging running game.
13 -- Key returnees: RB Thomas Brown, T Daniel Inman, DE Quentin Moses, S Tra Battle

Spring star: DE Charles Jonnson. Coaches say the junior has emerged as a dominant force opposite Moses.

Lowdown: The Dawgs will likely rely on their dominant defense and deep backfield (Brown, Danny Ware and Kregg Lumpkin) early on as they break in a new quarterback. Senior Joe Tereshinski remained No. 1 after spring, but heralded freshman Matthew Stafford will be a factor.
14 -- Key returnees: RB James Davis, WR Chansi Stuckey, DE Gaines Adams, LB Anthony Waters

Spring star: WR/RB Rendrick Taylor. The electrifying sophomore caught four passes for 174 yards in the spring game.

Lowdown: QB Will Proctor, taking over full-time for departed Charlie Whitehurst, steps into what could be a loaded and balanced offense. The Tigers also return seven starters from a defense that ranked in the top 25 last season, though they'll miss DBs Tye Hill and Jamaal Fudge.
15 -- Key returnees: QB Brian Brohm, RB Michael Bush, WR Mario Urrutia, WR Harry Douglas

Spring star: LB Lamar Myles. The sophomore may bump top returning tackler Nate Harris as the starting middle linebacker.

Lowdown: Brohm, recovering from a torn ACL, didn't participate in spring scrimmages, yet the offense was its usual, dominant self, with Urruita and Douglas taking their games to another level. The defense, which loses sack master Elvis Dumervil, struggled to sustain a pass rush.
16 -- Key returnees: QB Zac Taylor, WR Nate Swift, LB Corey McKeon, DE Adam Carriker

Spring star: RBs Marlon Lucky and Cody Glenn. The sleek sophomores combined for 182 yards in the spring game.

Lowdown: Taylor began showing command of coach Bill Callahan's West Coast offense late last season; the key now is developing a solid running game with Lucky and Glenn. The defense has the potential to be spectacular, particularly the front seven. Some new safeties need to emerge.
17 -- Key returnees: QB Dennis Dixon, RB Jonathan Stewart, WR James Finley, S Patrick Chung

Spring star: WR Derrick Jones. The former USC signee could be Oregon's top receiver -- if the NCAA clears him to play.

Lowdown: The Ducks' defense, despite losing DT Haloti Ngata and three veteran defensive backs, has been impressive in scrimmages. The offense, however, which must replace weapons Terrence Whitehead, Demetrius Williams and Tim Day needs to develop more consistency.
18 -- Key returnees: QB Drew Tate, RB Albert Young, DE Ken Iwebema, LB Edmond Miles

Spring star: C Rafael Eubanks. The redshirt freshman soared up the depth chart and might start come fall.

Lowdown: Tate and Young are All-Big Ten studs, but it's unclear who will step up in place of departed receivers Ed Hinkel and Clinton Solomon. A strong D-line, and safeties Miguel Merrick and Marcus Paschal, will anchor a defense that lost star LBs Chad Greenway and Abdul Hodge.
19 -- Key returnees: RB Tony Hunt, T Levi Brown, LB Paul Posluszny, DT Jay Alford

Spring star: QB Anthony Morelli. The junior looked sharp in his first spring game as a starter, completing 13-of-16 passes for 191 yards.

Lowdown: The Nittany Lions must replace 13 starters, including four-fifths of the O-line, three-fourths of the D-line and the entire secondary. Morelli, a better passer than predecessor Michael Robinson, will be called on to produce big plays with PSU's talented young receivers.
20 -- Key returnees: QB Kyle Wright, TE Greg Olsen, S Brandon Merriweather, LB Jon Beason

Spring star: T Reggie Youngblood. The sophomore looks capable of filling Eric Winston's shoes at left tackle.

Lowdown: Despite an influx of six new assistants, not much has changed in Coral Gables if the spring game is any indication -- the defense remains dominant, while the offense is a work in progress. Wright and Kirby Freeman managed just 77 passing yards in the scrimmage.

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