College Football 2016: Preseason Power-5 All-Conference Teams

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The upcoming NFL Combine will serve as a showcase for the top prospects in the 2016 NFL draft. Sadly, it will also serve as a reminder for college football fans about just how much star power departed for the pros this offseason.

Although many of the top performers from the 2015 season have left campus, fortunately, there’s still plenty of quality talent remaining at the collegiate level.

Returning standouts such as Stanford RB Christian McCaffrey, Clemson QB Deshaun Watson, Florida State RB Dalvin Cook, Texas A&M DE Myles Garrett and LSU RB Leonard Fournette have already ascended to star status and become household names. Plus, there are plenty of other young, up-and-coming potential breakout stars who are waiting to make a name for themselves as well this fall.

Here’s a look at the top impact players from each of the Power-5 conferences who are most deserving of preseason “All-Conference” accolades for the 2016 season.

Aaron Green’s Deflected Touchdown Catch Keeps TCU in Playoff Hunt

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TV cameras caught Gary Patterson smiling on Saturday afternoon. That’s not an occurrence that has happened very often during what so far has been an injury-riddled, mistake-filled 2015 campaign.

Patterson’s expression of glee came about following an improbable last-minute touchdown catch by RB Aaron Green that gave the Horned Frogs the decisive score they needed in their 55-52 victory over Texas Tech.

It’s only fitting that such a wild shootout would have such a wild ending.

On a critical 4th and Goal from the four-yard line, Trevone Boykin’s overthrown pass to Josh Doctson was tipped and happened to land right into the opportunistic grasp of Green, who had just inches to spare to score in the back of the end zone.

It was a play that sent shock waves throughout the stunned Red Raider crowd and sent a smile to a relieved head coach’s face, as he exhaled and thanked the football gods for the good fortune they bestowed upon his team.

Patterson knows that there’s still plenty of work that needs to be done to fix a banged-up defense that allowed 607 total yards of offense and 52 points to a frisky Texas Tech attack. It’s a unit that clearly isn’t close to championship caliber at this point in the season. Luckily, the defensive-minded head coach has been known to work his magic with his patented 4-2-5 scheme.

Luckily, the only number that really matters right now isn’t on the defensive stat sheet. Instead, it’s the zero in the loss column of TCU’s unblemished overall record. As the first month of the season draws to a close, it’s a number that signifies the Horned Frogs are still right in the thick of the hunt for a playoff berth, 

With bouts against Baylor, Oklahoma, West Virginia and Oklahoma State still left on the schedule, this game likely won’t be the last shootout that Patterson’s squad gets involved in this season.

Every championship team needs to get a few favorable bounces throughout its run to a title. TCU got its first big season-shifting bounce in Lubbock, which means the Frogs’ Final-Four aspirations are still alive.

Big 12 Football: 5 Players Who Are Ready to Become Stars in 2015

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This past season, the Big 12 was unfortunately exiled from college football’s first ever playoff festivities, when co-conference champions Baylor and TCU came up just short of making the four-team field. The Horned Frogs and the Bears were the bright spots of what was an otherwise sub par 2014 campaign for the conference as a whole.

After finishing the season with just three teams ranked in the final AP Top 25, the league will be looking to re-establish itself on the national scene with a bounce back season in 2015.

The conference is welcoming back plenty of premier stars such as TCU QB Trevone Boykin, Oklahoma RB Samaje Perine, Baylor RB Shock Linwood, Oklahoma State DE Emmanuel Ogbah, Baylor DE Shawn Oakman and West Virginia S Karl Joseph. But the Big 12 is also loaded with plenty of emerging players who are primed and ready to have breakout seasons.

Here’s a look at five players who are ready to become stars in 2015.

Big 12 Football: Picking Every Team’s MVP For 2015

College Football

The first ever college football playoff turned out to be a widely embraced success. Unfortunately, though, there was one conference that had a major gripe with the selection committee.

The Big 12 had two worthy contenders—TCU and Baylor—who each had a resume that warranted consideration for a playoff berth. However, both the Horned Frogs and the Bears were shut out of the four-team playoff and not able to compete for a national title.

The fact that the selection committee downgraded the Big 12 was not a surprise, since 2014 was a rather down season for the league. A 9-4 Kansas State squad was the only Big 12 team besides TCU and Baylor that finished ranked in the final AP Top 25.

Heading into the 2015 season, the conference as a whole will be looking to prove itself on the national scene with a big bounce back season. Luckily, the league is loaded with plenty of talent.

Here’s a look at every team’s most valuable player for the 2015 season.

West Virginia Football: Mountaineers Name Clint Trickett Starting QB

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West Virginia Football: Mountaineers Name Clint Trickett Starting QB

West Virginia head coach Dana Holgorsen has officially announced that Clint Trickett will be the Mountaineers’ starting quarterback for the 2014 season. 

In a statement on the team’s website, Holgorsen said, “Clint is 100 percent healthy and is ready to play. He worked hard last season and showed a lot of ability and leadership and deserves the chance to lead the team as a senior. He will be our starter.”

In eight games of action in 2013, Trickett completed 123 of of 233 passes for 1,605 yards and seven touchdowns. Though the Mountaineers went just 2-5 in his seven starts, the former Florida State transfer did lead West Virginia to an impressive 30-21 upset of No. 17 Oklahoma State in Morgantown.