Strike up the band, the fight song play;
How long we’ve waited for this day!
Our teams now charge onto the field.
To college football we must yield!
Did you think you’d see the day
Mark Richt would say, “My guys can play!”
Energized by his new staff
At his defense no one will laugh.
On offense, these Dawgs should be sound,
You know, Todd Gurley’s still around.
And fine receivers? They abound.
Opposing “D’s” they’ll surely hound.
Talent? Georgia has a wealth.
Can these Dawgs maintain their health?
Past woes coach Richt has seemed to fix;
They could be in the title mix.
Paul Johnson’s option needs some oil
If Coastal foes Tech wants to foil.
Two new QBs will lead the way;
Vad Lee went somewhere else to play.
Tech looks ahead to sunny Days
With lots of places Synjyn plays.
Yes, running backs Tech has galore,
But what receivers wait in store?
Ted Roof’s new defense learned the ropes;
They’ll play faster this year, he hopes.
At season’s end, how will they hack
Clemson and Georgia, back to back?
Florida State, a title won
Starts out the new year Number One.
But if they want to end that way,
Jameis with crab legs should not play.
Those Clemson fans, they love their paws;
Will players now gone blunt their cause?
Some tough defenders still remain.
To score on Clemson, teams will strain.
Duke sure surprised us all last year.
They’ve more than basketball to cheer.
This year the faithful wouldn’t mind
Duke’s first bowl win since ’59.
Malzahn can coach, make no mistake.
His Tigers pounced on every break.
Big breaks might even out this year;
Auburn back to earth, we fear.
Nick Saban has some things to tweak;
He’s on a two-game losing streak.
There’s talent everywhere you look.
Reloading? Saban wrote the book.
Les Miles might be broken-hearted;
Many Tigers now departed.
The game for which we cannot wait:
September six: Sam Houston State.
Ole Miss comes back with coach Hugh Freeze.
He has enough talent to please.
Bo Wallace surely has the game,
If Rebels lose, he’ll get the blame.
The Ol’ Ball Coach mouths off again:
The SEC he longs to win.
If his Gamecocks cop the crown
You’ll hear him crow for miles around.
How will Gator Nation survive
Outside the Top Twenty Five?
Coach Muschamp learns his final fate
With another four-and-eight.
Tennessee’d be back in heaven
To have losses under seven.
What makes support for coach Jones wilt?
Another loss to Vanderbilt.
A classic Big Ten football team?
Why, Michigan State, it would seem.
But in week two they’ll face the Ducks.
Two months later, bring on the Bucks!
Ohio State’s potent attack
Slows without its quarterback.
Someone else won’t be on hand:
The former leader of the band.
The Wolverines coach, Brady Hoke,
Talks like he’s a real tough bloke.
Last year his defense was a joke.
The faithful are unhappy folk.
What’s going on at Notre Dame?
Cheating players. What a shame.
Coach Kelly says he’s not to blame.
“Let’s focus on the game! The game!”
Boomer Sooner! They’re back again.
And how about that Sugar win?
Real strong on both sides of the ball,
Their schedule should prevent a fall.
The Baylor Bears, they play so fast
Opponents always seem half-gassed.
Briles’ Bears can outscore everyone.
Alas, their defense keeps things fun.
Texas fans got what they wanted:
Coach Mack Brown from Austin jaunted.
If Charlie makes the Longhorns strong,
Those glory days return ere long.
Out west it starts with Oregon.
Their fine QB can run and gun!
Duck season could be something great
They hope to nab a playoff date.
In two years at UCLA
Jim Mora’s Bruins now can play
To become the Pac-12’s elite
The Ducks and Cardinal they must beat.
Now tailgate parties, lots of cheer.
We love that football atmosphere!
And since a playoff has begun
We’ll crown a true champion!
Denton Ashway is a contributing columnist for The Times. His column appears weekly.