SI.com's team of experts make their picks for the 2008 campaign
SI.com's college football writers Stewart Mandel, Andy Staples, Cory McCartney, Luke Winn, Bill Trocchi, Arash Markazi and Gennaro Filice provide their predictions for the season.
Mandel: Ohio State. The Buckeyes are loaded at every position, and lord knows they'll be playing with a chip on their shoulders.
Staples: Georgia. They may be a trendy pick, but the Bulldogs have all the elements of a championship team -- including the brutal schedule.
McCartney: Oklahoma. The Sooners have their flaws (like two new corners and linebackers and the lack of a big-play receiver), but with Sam Bradford and a schedule that has Kansas and Texas Tech in Norman, there's reason to believe Bob Stoops will soon own another crystal football.
Winn: Ohio State. The solution to avoiding being called the Buffalo Bills of the BCS era: play a national title game against a non-SEC foe.
Trocchi: Oklahoma. Make it three straight disappointments for the Buckeyes as Sam Bradford leads a powerful Oklahoma offense to a championship.
Markazi: USC. The Trojans' current run of six straight BCS bowl games has netted them only one crystal ball, which irks Pete Carroll. The Trojans head man will field arguably his fastest and deepest defensive squad yet.
Filice: Ohio State. People forget that at this time last year the Buckeyes were not supposed to win the Big Ten and definitely not play in a second consecutive BCS title game. They were a year away. But now a year has passed ...
Mandel: Oregon State. The Beavers are brimming with offensive weapons and could pull an early-season upset of Penn State or USC.
Staples: USF. The Big East is wide open, and the Bulls have won their past two against conference goliath West Virginia.
McCartney: Arkansas. Darren McFadden and Co. are gone, but this team will be better than expected with a confident Casey Dick playing behind a veteran offensive line that includes Rimington winner Jonathan Luigs.
Winn: Michigan State. Find a quality defensive team with a coach on the rise (Mark Dantonio), a veteran QB (senior Brian Hoyer) and a bunch of close losses the previous season (all six of Sparty's were by six points or less) and you have a decent sleeper pick.
Trocchi: North Carolina. With a favorable schedule (the Heels miss Clemson and Wake) and maturing talent, Butch Davis gets UNC into the ACC title mix sooner than expected.
Markazi: North Carolina. The Tar Heels may have gone 4-8 in their first season under Butch Davis, but they lost four games by four points, one by six points (South Carolina) and another by a touchdown (Virginia Tech). Also, they return 18 starters.
Filice: Ole Miss. Jevan Snead will end up being the star QB transfer Ole Miss thought it had in Brent Schaeffer.
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