Man, I've been rifling through my Phil Steele Mag (best. magazine. ever.) over the last week, and this team looks absolutely stacked this year.
Steele has their DL ranked #2 in the country (LSU #1), their LB ranked #1 in the country, and their DB ranked #2 in the country (Oklahoma 1). They return 10 starters on defense, and 16 in total from last years squad, who went 11-2 before embarrasing Michigan in their bowl game.
Eight of their 11 defensive starters made Phil Steele's All-American teams ...
DE Lawrence Jackson
OLB Keith Rivers
OLB Brian Cushing
DT Sedrick Ellis
ILB Rey Maualuga
FS Taylor Mays
CB Terrell Thomas
DT Fili Moala
Seven of the eight are first team preseason All Pac 10. Two of the other starters, SS Kevin Ellison and CB Rodney Van ... made 2nd and 3rd team preseason All Pac 10.
Add in one of the nations best offensive lines, a proven senior QB in JD Booty, and all sorts of young talent at RB and WR, and this team looks like its going to be very tough to beat.
They do play at Nebraska, at ND, at Oregon, at Cal, and at Arizona State .... all teams that could be ranked. Outside of the season ending rivalry game with UCLA, all of their home games look like walks.