NCF Nation: May 2010 power rankings

Spring practice is in the books around the Big Ten, and before we take an in-depth look at the last seven weeks, it's time for a new installment of the power rankings. I know you missed them.

There's still clear separation at the top of the Big Ten with Ohio State, Iowa and Wisconsin. Same goes for the bottom of the league with Illinois, Indiana and Minnesota, although those three are about even. The middle of the conference, not surprisingly, is a bit muddled. There's not much movement from the last rundown, but a few things I saw this spring prompted changes.

Enjoy!

1. Ohio State: It was business as usual this spring for the Buckeyes, who are used to lofty expectations and boast experience on both sides of the ball. The offense rebounded nicely in the spring game after setting off alarm bells in the jersey scrimmage. Cameron Heyward leads a talented defense that found some answers along the line and at linebacker.

2. Iowa: Aside from a bunch of banged-up running backs, Iowa had a very solid spring. A very good defensive line got better, players stepped up at linebacker, quarterback Ricky Stanzi worked on his interceptions and the offensive line saw some separation occur. Like Ohio State, Iowa has veterans who can handle the high expectations this fall.

3. Wisconsin: Not surprisingly, spring ball seemed quiet in Madison, as Wisconsin returned plenty of starters on both sides of the ball. A knee injury to backup quarterback Curt Phillips was the big negative, while the defensive line made strides and the secondary finished strong. Injuries prevented the offensive line from truly coming together.

T-4 Michigan State: The Spartans move into a tie with Penn State after a very solid spring. Quarterback Kirk Cousins made strides and should have a ton of weapons at his disposal this fall. A greater emphasis on the 3-4 defense seems to suit Greg Jones and his teammates. Offensive line, secondary and kicker are the big question marks entering the fall.

T-4 Penn State: The Blue-White Game set off alarm bells for many folks, as quarterbacks Kevin Newsome and Matt McGloin struggled behind a shuffled offensive line. But I still give Penn State the benefit of the doubt. The Lions always will be very good on defense, and if they can move the ball with running back Evan Royster, they'll buy some time for a young quarterback to get settled.

6. Northwestern: Head coach Pat Fitzgerald called this the healthiest spring his team has gone through, a good sign after a rough season on the injury front in 2009. Quarterback Dan Persa embraced a leadership role, and the defensive front seven turned in a solid spring. Running back and the secondary are the big unknowns.

7. Michigan: A pivotal season for the Maize and Blue could come down to Denard Robinson and an improved offensive line. If Robinson builds off a strong spring, wins the starting quarterback job and gets some room to roam, Michigan should score plenty of points this fall. There's still a lot of work to do on defense and especially in the kicking game.

8. Purdue: The injury bug hit Purdue very hard this spring, as the Boilers practiced without 20 players and 10 starters during one stretch and had to postpone two practices because of all the health issues. Running back Ralph Bolden's torn ACL was the Big Ten's most significant spring setback, though Purdue is holding out hope that he can return this fall. Quarterback Robert Marve was a big bright spot for the Boilers this spring.

9. Minnesota: Quarterback Adam Weber answered the challenge this spring and likely will retain his job as the starter. Minnesota also saw growth from the offensive line, and new coordinator Jeff Horton and his simplified scheme clicked well with the players. The Gophers had some setbacks on defense, including safety Kim Royston's broken leg, and still have to replace replace a whopping nine starters.

10. Illinois: The Illini still have a long way to go, but players responded well to new coordinators Paul Petrino and Vic Koenning this spring. Illinois has enough talent at the skill positions, and it built some depth along the defensive line during spring ball. The young quarterbacks had their ups and downs, but Nathan Scheelhaase looked impressive for most of the session.

11. Indiana: This isn't so much a knock against the Hoosiers as it is a wait-and-see approach, especially regarding the defense. Indiana will pass the football very well this fall, but two things still concern me about this team: its struggles with the run game, and whether a chronically poor defense can replace key contributors like Jammie Kirlew and Matt Mayberry. If the Hoosiers can meet those two challenges, they should surprise a lot of folks this fall.
Spring football is over, and it's time to issue another set of power rankings for the Big East.

I saw seven of the eight teams in person this spring (sorry, Syracuse) and I think I have a pretty good feel for where the teams stand right now. But things can change between now and September, and this league is going to be as competitive as it's ever been from top to bottom. Now, without further ado:

1. Pittsburgh: The Panthers have some questions, notably on the interior offensive line. But they've also got Dion Lewis, Greg Romeus and Jonathan Baldwin and more answers on both sides of the ball than any other Big East squad.

2. Cincinnati: The two-time defending champs probably deserve the top spot until someone knocks them out of it. Still, I have lingering concerns about that defense, though the offense has a chance to be devastatingly good.

3. Connecticut: I liked UConn going into the spring and was even more impressed with the Huskies after seeing them live. Lots of depth and more speed than you think.

4. West Virginia: The Mountaineers could very easily rule the Big East again this year and have more returning starters than anyone else. I need to see Geno Smith get fully healthy and things start to jell more overall before I move them up, however.

5. Rutgers: This is a young but very talented team, especially on defense. The offensive line remains the huge sticking point right now and could be what holds the Scarlet Knights back from serious contention this year.

6. South Florida: Losing A.J. Love at the end of the spring was a big blow for an offense that was light on experienced receivers. The defense is green but gifted. Skip Holtz has plenty to work with, but he may need some more time to get it all pieced together.

7. Syracuse: Delone Carter's suspension at the end of the spring cast a pall over the Orange camp, and quarterback competition could continue into August. Syracuse still should show improvement based simply on having more healthy bodies.

8. Louisville: Incoming players this summer could push for playing time right away, because the Cardinals need more difference-makers, especially on defense. The team got better and tougher this spring under Charlie Strong but still has a long way to go.
Now that spring is over and teams throughout the ACC have learned a little bit more about themselves, it’s time to re-evaluate the conference hierarchy heading into summer camp. The very top stayed the same as the pre-spring rankings, as did the bottom of the barrel, but there were some tweaks in between. Here’s a look at how the ACC shakes out heading into summer camp:

1. Virginia Tech: The Hokies were encouraged by the rookie performances on defense this spring, but coach Frank Beamer has said he’s still looking for the young players to get stronger this offseason and spend some significant time in the film room. Offensively, the Hokies will be as good as the revamped offensive line, and that’s still a work in progress.

2. Florida State: What separates the Seminoles right now is the fact they only have to replace one starter on offense, and veteran quarterback Christian Ponder will be protected by one of the best lines in the country. The defense is better suited for the personnel under coordinator Mark Stoops, but overall remains a question.

3. Miami: The Hurricanes’ depth at running back should make the offense more productive in the second year under coordinator Mark Whipple. The Canes’ defensive line was also a highlight of the spring under first-year assistant Rick Petri, but they need to replace three starters up front offensively.

4. Clemson: Defense was the strength this spring, but running backs Andre Ellington and James Harper should ease the loss of C.J. Spiller. With four starters returning, the offensive line should improve. The key to Clemson’s run at a second straight Atlantic Division title will be the return of quarterback Kyle Parker to football instead of baseball.

5. Georgia Tech: Yes, they’re the defending ACC champs, but the Jackets were hurt the most by the NFL draft and are making the biggest transition defensively. There were positive reviews about the addition and style of coordinator Al Groh, and if the Jackets can replace three starters on the offensive line, they’ve got the skill players to defend their title.

6. North Carolina: The Tar Heels have an NFL-caliber defense, but this spring revealed little about how much progress they made offensively. Quarterback play remains a concern, as Butch Davis must choose between inexperience and inconsistency.

7. Boston College: The quarterback competition continues, and nobody is sure just how effective linebacker Mark Herzlich will be upon his return. The Eagles do have one of the better offensive lines, though, and a schedule conducive to another appearance in the ACC title game.

8. Maryland: Coach Ralph Friedgen was pleased with his spring practices, specifically the progress of the offensive line, which will be critical to Maryland's comeback this fall. The Terps have settled on quarterback Jamarr Robinson as their starter and have plenty of talent at running back and receiver to help him.

9. Wake Forest: Skylar Jones finished the spring atop the depth chart, but his main competitors -- Ted Stachitas and Brendan Cross -- were both injured. The Deacs will reveal a more run-based, option offense under their new quarterback. The interior defensive line remains a concern.

10. NC State: Coach Tom O’Brien just can’t seem to get through an offseason without a setback. The misdemeanor charges against four of his players -- including two starters from 2009 -- revealed poor decision-making from veterans.

11. Duke: Quarterback Sean Renfree is expected to be fully recovered from his torn ACL and be the starter this fall, but the Blue Devils’ running game is still in need of an upgrade and the defensive line remains a question.

12. Virginia: It’s still too early for first-year coach Mike London to put his stamp on the program, as he needs more recruiting classes to do that. This will be a transition year with a new staff, new philosophies and possibly a new quarterback.
The post-spring power rankings do not match the pre-spring power rankings.

Why? After all, no games were played.

Well, it's an extremely complicated process that's difficult to explain unless you are familiar with the jargon of sportswriting and theoretical physics. In layman's terms, a supersymmetry exists between bosons and fermions as viewed through a prism of the spring football action principle -- the Nambu-Goto action or the Polyakov action or the Masolian action -- which describes how footballs move through space and time.

Or, I just changed my mind. For now. (Still think Nos. 4-8 are a toss-up).

1. USC: The Trojans move up to the top spot not just because Oregon moved down when the Ducks lost starting quarterback Jeremiah Masoli to a season-long suspension, though that's the biggest reason. USC will have the best defensive line in the Pac-10, the value of which can't be underestimated, and the hunch here is that Lane Kiffin and Matt Barkley are going to make beautiful music together. (Talked to a BIG Tennessee fan over the weekend who, while not a big fan of Kiffin -- surprise! -- acknowledged that his transforming quarterback Jonathan Crompton into a fifth-round NFL draft pick was a minor miracle).

2. Oregon: Oregon takes a step back without Masoli, but the Ducks weren't widely seen as national title contenders just because of him. Nine other starters are back on offense and eight on defense and if you watched the Ducks practice this spring, it was hard not to be impressed. These guys look like the fastest team in the conference.

3. Oregon State: The Beavers were rated No. 3 before two defensive starters quit the team: Linebacker David Pa'aluhi and end Matt LaGrone. Considering they are one of just three teams in the conference breaking in a new quarterback, they seemed ripe for a demotion. But sophomore QB Ryan Katz was so impressive this spring, the Beavers hold steady.

4. Stanford: The Cardinal make the big jump all the way from sixth. Why? We ranked them sixth because we obsessed over what was missing (namely Toby Gerhart) and what was questionable (the defense). They are now fourth because of what is there -- quarterback Andrew Luck, a good offensive line and solid receivers -- and the impression the defense will take a significant step forward with new coordinator Vic Fangio's new 3-4 look.

5. California: Considering the Bears were the only Pac-10 team with nearly all spring practices closed to the media, it's hard to form an impression other than one based on the pluses and minuses from the 2009 depth chart. And that impression remains: There are enough quality pieces here to believe a consistent senior season from quarterback Kevin Riley would make the Bears a top-25 team.

6. Washington: It's tempting to move the Huskies up just because of Year Two of the Steve Sarkisian-Jake Locker combinaton. But we're holding off until we hear reports that defensive ends Kalani Aldrich and Everette Thompson are back and running at 100 percent after sitting out spring with worrisome injuries.

7. Arizona: The Wildcats have plenty of talent on offense but the defense is replacing seven starters. Moreover, while reviews of the new four coordinator system -- co-coordinators on both sides of the ball -- were positive, it remains worthy of a raised eyebrow, at least until it is properly measured by actual game-day stress.

8. UCLA: The new revolver offense, a knockoff of Nevada's "pistol," got mixed reviews, but the rebuilding defense probably looked better than expected. Questions about the offensive line remain, and it's fair to believe that line will be the reason the Bruins either climb into the conference's top half or remain in the bottom five.

9. Arizona State: There were encouraging signs of offensive improvement, even though the quarterback competition between Michigan transfer Steven Threet and sophomore Brock Osweiler, who appeared to lead as spring ended, wasn't resolved. It didn't help, however, that guard Jon Hargis, a starter the previous two seasons, blew out his knee and won't be available in 2010.

10. Washington State: Coach Paul Wulff called it the Cougars' best spring since he arrived. Every account notes that the Cougars will be physically superior to the teams that won just three games over the previous two seasons. Depth is clearly better. On the downside, it wasn't good that Toby Turpin got kick out of school and that Bernard Wolfgramm and Josh Luapo are struggling to remain academically eligible. Those are three of the Cougars' top four defensive tackles.

Non-AQ post-spring power rankings

May, 3, 2010
5/03/10
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My post-spring power rankings aren’t much different from my pre-spring power rankings. The only team that took a bit of a hit this spring was BYU, which lost running back Harvey Unga and played most of spring with a piecemeal offensive line.

Otherwise, here are the 2010 post-spring power rankings:

1. Boise State: Quarterback Kellen Moore didn’t have a great spring, but no one’s panicking. In fact, his struggles allowed redshirt freshman Joe Southwick to emerge as a stellar backup. The Broncos had several players miss spring football because of injuries, but depth was developed at several positions, including offensive line and wide receiver.

2. TCU: The Horned Frogs filled the holes left by Jerry Hughes, Daryl Washington and Marshall Newhouse and found some depth at running back. Similar to Boise State, the Horned Frogs didn’t have many holes to fill and should be in good position in fall camp.

3. Utah: The Utes found some unexpected surprises at quarterback, wide receiver and defensive line. Although starting quarterback Jordan Wynn struggled with injuries, backups Terrance Cain and Griff Robles exceeded expectations. The Utes also found a go-to receiver in walk-on Griffin McNabb.

4. SMU: The Mustangs will be young for the second consecutive season, but a lot of that youth has experience. Kyle Padron took control of the starting quarterback position, but running back remains a big question.

5. Navy: The Midshipmen found some much-needed depth at several positions this spring, including quarterback, slot back and on defense. Mario Washington is listed as both a wide receiver and defensive back, but he probably won’t play both sides of the ball.

6. Air Force: The Falcons named Tim Jefferson the starting quarterback despite him being limited in spring football. However, Jefferson and Connor Dietz likely will face off in the fall for the right to start in the opener. The Falcons also will have a young offensive line and they had some issues with injuries at linebacker.

7. Houston: The Cougars' defense spent the spring in transition with new defensive coordinator Brian Stewart, who inherited a talented but young group that struggled mightily last season. Stewart’s work paid dividends during the spring game when his defense had 12 sacks, three interceptions and one fumble recovery.

8. BYU: The Cougars had a lot of questions to answer this spring and they seemed to come out with more questions. They still haven’t settled on a cornerback and have many questions on defense. The Cougars also are waiting on word about Unga, who voluntarily left school because of an honor code violation.

9. Middle Tennessee: New coordinators on both the offensive and defensive side made for a learning spring, but the Blue Raiders returned most of their players from last season, which made the transition easier. The offense and quarterback Dwight Dasher will be helped by the return of running back Phillip Tanner, who missed last season with a knee injury.

10. Nevada: The Wolf Pack hired Andy Buh to help fix the defense and they definitely showed progress after not allowing the No. 1 offense to score in the spring game. Buh said the defense still has a ways to go, but if the Wolf Pack can catch their defense up with their offense, they will be a tough team to beat this year.
1. Texas

The defending champs will have one of the nation’s best defenses again, and perhaps its best secondary. Garrett Gilbert spent the spring validating his performance in the national title game, showing some of his near-limitless potential. The Longhorns won’t be easy to unseat in 2010, especially if they finally discover a running game.

2. Oklahoma

Here’s why the Sooners are here: The gap between Oklahoma’s offense and Nebraska’s offense is wider than the one between the Sooners’ defense and the Huskers’ defense. If Oklahoma’s offensive line can show improvement next season, the Sooners won’t have trouble scoring with the amount of talent they have at the skill positions, talent that’s much better than Nebraska’s.

3. Nebraska

The Huskers get Missouri and Texas in Lincoln and don’t see the Sooners, which has Big Red looking for a big season, but don’t count on another 10-win season if the offense doesn’t improve. The offense previewed its fall reopening in the 33-0 bowl win over Arizona, but if the quarterback play isn’t solid, the reopening could be a bad thing. With what could be the best defense in football again, and two solid backs in Roy Helu Jr. and Rex Burkhead, the Huskers’ floor is pretty high and the ceiling is even higher.

4. Missouri

Home losses to Nebraska and Baylor ended any chance the Tigers had of winning the North in 2009, but they bring back a lot from last year’s eight-win team and have a lot of experienced talent at linebacker and receiver ready to replace the big names -- Sean Weatherspoon and Danario Alexander -- they lost from last year’s team. Blaine Gabbert has to show he’s ready to become a household name, and if he does, the Tigers could make a serious run at the North.

5. Texas A&M

The Aggies kept almost the entire core from last year’s team, but remember, A&M still only won six games last season. It’ll be replacing three offensive linemen who could stop the Aggies' skill position players -- cumulatively the best in the conference -- from being as productive as they could be. One of those replacements should be true freshman Luke Joeckel, but if the defense improves and the line re-establishes itself, the Aggies are South contenders. If not, they won’t be much better than a seven-win team.

6. Kansas State

The Wildcats aren’t built to win 10 games just yet, but if Nebraska and Missouri stumble, they’ll be there to slip into the North conversation just like last season, when they were one upset win over the Huskers from a trip to Arlington. Carson Coffman took hold of the starting quarterback job in the spring, but he’ll need to keep it in the fall and be productive with his three new receivers to lighten the load on running back Daniel Thomas. If that happens, there’ll be more happy Saturdays than sad ones in Aggieville.

7. Texas Tech

Injuries kept the Sticks vs. Potts debate from really heating up this spring, but the switch to a higher risk/reward strategy with an aggressive defense could be fun to watch next season. The Red Raiders are deep at running back and receiver, but look for the former to get more touches this fall than they have in over a decade.

8. Oklahoma State

The Cowboys grabbed hold of Dana Holgorsen’s offense this spring, and Brandon Weeden grabbed hold of the starting role. Oklahoma State should have an impact player at each level of the defense in defensive end Ugo Chinasa, safety Markelle Martin and linebacker Orie Lemon, but they’ll need the rest of the D to solidify for the Cowboys to climb to a higher rung of the South ladder.

9. Iowa State

Iowa State is getting better, but the tough schedule and young defense will make it difficult for the Cyclones to improve on their 7-6 record in 2009. Five linebackers from last year’s team graduated, and the three likely starters this year, sophomore A.J. Klein, Jake Knott and juco transfer Matt Tau’fo’ou have a combined 41 career tackles. Iowa State is solid in the secondary, but with the amount of quality running backs in the North, a good defense up front is more important. It's also replacing two starters on the defensive line.

10. Baylor

A bowl game isn’t out of reach for the Bears, but they’ll have to prove something before they move out of the South’s cellar. Robert Griffin gives Waco hope, but the other 21 guys have to provide substance for Baylor to succeed. Replacing two safeties, two linebackers who combined for 190 tackles last season and an offensive line shift to replace All-American center J.D. Walton could make Baylor’s early road a bumpy one.

11. Kansas

Kansas will be short on talent this year, but expectations are measured after losing plenty on both sides of the ball. The Jayhawks are a team that could get a lot better as the season progresses, but when it starts, they’ll have a lot of work to do. They’ll be competitive in the bottom half of the North, but slipping past rival Kansas State to finish in the top half of the division is about as good as it could get for the Jayhawks in Turner Gill’s first season. Not having Texas or Oklahoma on the schedule could help make that happen.

12. Colorado

Transfer Toney Clemons infuses some excitement into the Colorado faithful, and alongside Markques Simas and leading receiver Scotty McKnight, the Buffaloes could have one of the more underrated receiving corps in the conference, helping loosen things up for Rodney Stewart. But the defense gave up the second-most points in the conference last season, and there’s little reason to think they’ll be a lot better in 2010. Scoring 22 points a game and allowing just under 29 is the opposite of a recipe for success.

SEC post-spring power rankings

May, 3, 2010
5/03/10
10:00
AM ET
Now that spring practice has come and gone, why not tweak the SEC power rankings?

The teams always look a little different coming out of the spring. New players emerge. Injuries, suspensions and dismissals occur, and coaches bemoan depth issues at key spots.

The top of the league remains unchanged. Alabama’s the best team in the SEC until proven otherwise. Florida’s the second-best team until proven otherwise.

Yes, both teams lost great players. But both teams also have immensely talented players waiting in the wings behind those players they lost.

After Alabama and Florida, it’s anybody’s guess. Having been to most of the spring camps the past two months, I can see how a case could be made for Arkansas, Auburn, Georgia, LSU and South Carolina all to be ranked No. 3.

Here’s my best college try as we head into the summer:

1. Alabama: Don’t be fooled by how few starters return on defense. Defensive end Marcell Dareus and linebacker Dont’a Hightower are future first-round draft picks, and this program has recruited like crazy the past two years. The offense may be the best Alabama has put on the field in a long time. You can bet the Tide will be balanced, too. Having two backs the caliber of Mark Ingram and Trent Richardson on the same roster tends to open up a few things for the offense.

2. Florida: Junior quarterback John Brantley certainly looks like the real thing. We’ll find out for sure this fall. How everybody plays around him on offense may be the most important component for the Gators. The schedule sets up nicely, meaning all of the new faces on defense will have a chance to build up some confidence before that Oct. 2 trip to Alabama.

3. Arkansas: The Hogs move up a spot from the pre-spring rankings. Coach Bobby Petrino is convinced that his defense will be improved and said the competition between the offense and defense this spring was the best it’s been. That’s saying something, too, when you consider how potent Arkansas is offensively. The Hogs are going to light up scoreboards in the fall.

4. LSU: There wasn’t that air of confidence surrounding the quarterback position coming out of the spring at LSU. Jordan Jefferson simply didn’t take the job and run with it like a lot of people around the program thought he would. The Tigers made more of a commitment to running the ball better this spring and will again be good on defense. But to be a 10-win team or better, Jefferson has to take his game to another level.

5. Auburn: Arkansas and Auburn find themselves in similar positions. Both need to improve on defense to have a legitimate shot of contending for the SEC championship. The Tigers are still facing a numbers problem on defense, although it’s not as severe as it was last season. They’re counting on several players from this signing class to come in and provide some depth. Quarterback Cameron Newton was one of the best acquisitions of the offseason. He’ll bring a different dimension to this offense.

6. Georgia: Even though the Bulldogs lost a few key players this spring, namely quarterback Zach Mettenberger and outside linebacker Montrez Robinson, they get the nod over South Carolina and move up to the sixth spot. Redshirt freshman Aaron Murray will be a first-year starter at quarterback, but he has 10 starters returning around him. Ultimately, it will be up to the defense to see if the Bulldogs can make a serious run at the Gators in the East.

7. South Carolina: The Gamecocks were ranked in the top half of the league in the pre-spring rankings. That’s before Steve Spurrier went after quarterback Stephen Garcia publicly. Maybe Garcia will respond and have a great year. The Gamecocks return 15 starters, and you know Ellis Johnson’s defense will be good again. But if Garcia goes the other way, Spurrier will head into the most anticipated season since he’s been in Columbia with a true freshman (Connor Shaw) as his quarterback.

8. Ole Miss: Tyrone Nix’s front seven on defense is what gives the Rebels the nod over their in-state rivals for the No. 8 spot. A defensive line led by Jerrell Powe and Kentrell Lockett should be one of the best in the league, and the Rebels’ linebackers are extremely underrated. It may be slow going for the offense until some guys grow up. The middle of the offensive line will be new, and somebody needs to emerge as the go-to playmaker.

9. Mississippi State: It’s tempting to move the Bulldogs even higher. After all, they did beat Ole Miss by two touchdowns when they met last November. Dan Mullen said he would be disappointed if Mississippi State’s not in a bowl game next postseason. The defensive line should be greatly improved, and it sounds like Mullen is comfortable with playing two quarterbacks. That Thursday night home game against Auburn the second week of the season will be huge for this club to generate some early momentum.

10. Tennessee: It’s strange seeing the Vols this far down in any kind of ranking of SEC teams, but that’s what happens when your roster is gutted the way it has been the past couple of years and you’re on your third head coach in a little more than 14 months. Even getting to .500 next season will be a challenge for the Vols, who will have five new starters on the offensive line, a first-year starter at quarterback and no depth at defensive tackle.

11. Kentucky: The Wildcats have thrived on being picked low the past two years and then proving everybody wrong. Only four other teams in the SEC have been to bowl games each of the past four years. The problem heading into the 2010 season is that they lost so many key defensive players from those teams. Quarterback Mike Hartline’s return from a knee injury should help the passing game, which was non-existent after he went down last season.

12. Vanderbilt: The offense can’t be any worse than it was a year ago, right? Those who saw the offense go 13 straight possessions before finding the end zone in the Black and Gold spring scrimmage may beg to disagree. Vanderbilt coach Bobby Johnson has shuffled some responsibilities on his offensive staff, and even though the Commodores will again be salty on defense, it’s hard to move them out of the cellar until they prove they’re going to be able to score points in this league.

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