I’ve gone back and forth on this quite a bit, and even now as I post this, I’m not completely sold on what I’m putting down. Aside from at the very top and very bottom, there is a lot of uncertainty. Two through five in the Atlantic, you can pull them out of a hat and nothing will surprise me (in fact, if I reached a point where I couldn’t easily place a team, I did select at random – sometimes I’ve noticed that guessing is better than thinking, anyway). If you disagree with my findings/guesses, voice yourself at once.
6th place: Wake Forest
We knew that the Deacs would have to try to regroup last season, but damn did they ever have their problems. Wake was 101st in FBS in total defense in 2010, as well as 108th in total offense (one spot ahead of the anemic Eagles) and 91st in scoring offense. They were an all-around horrendous football team last year, though young, but that’s not an easy fix.
It would be hard for the Demon Deacons to be any worse than they were last season, since quarterback Tanner Price will have a year of experience under his belt as will Josh Harris and the rest of the young players who were baptized by fire.
The issue, however, is their schedule, which appears to be unforgiving. Not only do they play the five teams in their division, all of which are probably better than they are, but they also play Virginia Tech, Syracuse, and Notre Dame. At least Stanford can’t hang 68 on them again this season.
I don’t think the Deacs will have as bad of national rankings in offense and defense as they did in 2010, but I don’t think their record will improve much, either. Three or four total wins seems about right.