American Athletic Conference 2018 Spring Rankings & Analysis

American Athletic Conference 2018 Spring Rankings & Analysis

USF

American Athletic Conference 2018 Spring Rankings & Analysis


The 2018 spring college football rankings, taking the first look at the American Athletic Conference.


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American Athletic 2018 Spring Rankings

Based on how the teams appear to be before spring football is over.

12. Connecticut Huskies

The Huskies should be a bit stronger, but it still might not be enough to make any noise in the improved American Athletic Conference. They have the pieces for the passing game to rock, but the shaky defensive front is starting over.
– Spring Analysis | Schedule Breakdown

11. East Carolina Pirates

Can the defense show up? The experience is there, but the secondary has to be far stronger and the line has to stop someone from getting physical. The receivers need to step up and shine with a shaky quarterback situation.
– Spring Analysis | Schedule Breakdown

10. Tulsa Golden Hurricane

There’s no way the offense is going to be any worse after the clunker of a campaign. The top running backs are gone, but the passing attack should be stronger. Defense is always a problem for the Golden Hurricane, but seven starters are back.
– Spring Analysis | Schedule Breakdown

9. Tulane Green Wave

Get ready for the Willie Fritz option attack to be stronger, even if the top running backs need to be replaced. With all five starters back up front, everything will be fine. The secondary will be a rock, but the defensive front seven is a concern.
– Spring Analysis | Schedule Breakdown

8. Cincinnati Bearcats

Year Two under Luke Fickell has to bring more offensive pop, but that’ll be a fight with just one starter returning up front, and with the skill parts just okay. The defense, though, should be terrific with three starters returning on the line and with the back seven looking solid.
– Spring Analysis | Schedule Breakdown

7. Temple Owls

Geoff Collins has a good defense to hope for more production, especially from the linebacking corps. However, the offensive line needs some retooling. If that comes together in a hurry, look out – the skill guys are in place to be great.
– Spring Analysis | Schedule Breakdown

6. SMU Mustangs

The passing game will go to another level under new head man Sonny Dykes, but QB Ben Hicks is missing receivers Trey Quinn and Courtland Sutton. The line, though, will be terrific, and eight starters return on D.
– Spring Analysis | Schedule Breakdown

5. Navy Midshipmen

The Navy offense has to go back to being the Navy offense, and it has to do it without the top running backs of last year. However, QBs Zach Abey and Malcolm Perry – fine, Perry really is a running back – are killers. Linebacker will be the bigger early problem on D.
– Spring Analysis | Schedule Breakdown

4. Houston Cougars

Can the offense be more consistent? QB D’Eriq King is the star to build around, but he needs help with RB Duke Catalon taking a leave of absence. Ed Oliver might be the best player in the country, leading a good-looking D even with just five starters back.
– Spring Analysis | Schedule Breakdown

3. USF Bulls

QB Quinton Flowers might be gone, but the offensive line should be good and the defense great. The skill players will be terrific with a little bit of time, and there’s talent ready to step in, but it’ll take a little bit to figure out several key spots.
– Spring Analysis | Schedule Breakdown

2. Memphis Tigers

The quarterback situation is a fight, and WR Anthony Miller is gone, but the running game is loaded with option. The defense needs to be a whole lot stronger – especially in the secondary – but eight starters are back for a team that might just be better.
– Spring Analysis | Schedule Breakdown

1. UCF Knights

The Knights aren’t going to be any better without Scott Frost, and LB Shaq Griffin, and WR Tre’Quan Smith, and CB Mike Hughes, and TE Jordan Akins, but they’re still loaded. McKenzie Milton is back under center, four starters return on the line, and six starters are back on defense for new head coach Josh Heupel to work with.
– Spring Analysis | Schedule Breakdown

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