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Stewart Mandel's 2009 TOP 10
AUSTIN MURPHY
January 19, 2009
1. FLORIDA Not only is Tim Tebow coming back, but so is most of a defense that started eight underclassmen in the championship game.
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January 19, 2009

Stewart Mandel's 2009 Top 10

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1. FLORIDA
Not only is Tim Tebow coming back, but so is most of a defense that started eight underclassmen in the championship game.

2. TEXAS
Led by QB Colt McCoy and one of his favorite targets at wide receiver ( Jordan Shipley), the offense brings back a wealth of talent.

3. USC
If quarterback Mark Sanchez returns, the Trojans will have 10 starters back from the offense that lit up Penn State in the Rose Bowl.

4. OKLAHOMA
Defensive tackle Gerald McCoy and linebacker Travis Lewis lead an experienced defense that figures to be the Sooners' strength.

5. ALABAMA
A program that was a big surprise in '08 will be even more talented across the board as Nick Saban begins his third season.

6. OLE MISS
One of the hottest teams down the stretch could have its best season since the 1960s if the defense continues to develop.

7. OKLAHOMA STATE
The offense, led by QB Zac Robinson, should be dynamic again, though the defensive front seven needs to improve.

8. UTAH
The Utes suffer big losses at the skill positions, but with nine starters back on defense, they shouldn't be overlooked. Just ask Alabama.

9. LSU
Consider the five-loss season an aberration, especially now that the Tigers have a QB they can trust in rising sophomore Jordan Jefferson.

10. VIRGINIA TECH
A solid QB ( Tyrod Taylor), a budding tailback ( Darren Evans) and another dominant defense bodes well for next season.

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