Charboneau: Michigan should be ranked 9th, MSU 11th

Matt Charboneau
The Detroit News
De'Veon Smith runs for yards against Malik McDowell last season.

College football, finally, is just a couple of weeks from kicking off and that means it’s time to tell you how the teams stack up.

Of course, that comes without any team playing a single game, but we love rankings.

I’ve never quite fully understood the concept of ranking college teams before the season starts. After all, the rosters turnover on a yearly basis making the task of predicting who is the best far from an exact science

As an example, a quick look at my preseason rankings from last season has Auburn No. 6. Let’s just say the Tigers didn’t appear in my final rankings at the end of the season, though I’m not the only one to ride that train to misery.

Some other notable mistakes were Clemson at No. 12 and Oklahoma at No. 24. Those teams, of course, played in the College Football Playoff. I had Ohio State winning it all, but the Buckeyes didn’t win the Big Ten.

Michigan 7th, MSU 12th in AP preseason poll

Alabama? Ranked the Tide No. 3, so it wasn’t far off.

So with that, here’s my best guess for 2016. There almost certainly will be some that don’t even come close and likely a team not listed here that will skyrocket, but hey, maybe I’ll nail it – like winning the lottery.

Yeah, probably not.


1. Alabama

2. Clemson

3. LSU

4. Oklahoma

5. Florida State

6. Ohio State

7. Stanford

8. Notre Dame

9. Michigan

10. Iowa

11. Michigan State

12. Washington

13. Tennessee

14. Louisville

15. UCLA

16. Ole Miss

17. TCU

18. Houston

19. North Carolina

20. Southern Cal

21. Oklahoma State

22. Boise State

23. Washington State

24. Texas A&M

25. Pittsburgh