Wednesday, January 04, 2006

Reporters' Notebooks

Ray Fittipaldo, Pittsburgh Post-Gazette: West Virginia should be near the top of the list when national title contenders are discussed next season.

Carter Strickland, Atlanta Journal-Constitution: Georgia will suffer heavy losses and the departures could grow in number, depending on what two juniors decide (registration).

Pete DiPrimio, Fort Worth News-Sentinel: Mark your calendar for Sept. 2. That is the day Notre Dame plays Georgia Tech and begins its quest for a national championship.

Doug Lesmerises, Cleveland Plain Dealer: Ohio State will be loaded on offense in 2006. It's the defense that will have to be rebuilt.

Mike Lucas, Capital Times: The Barry Alvarez era is over at Wisconsin. Now his hand-picked successor, Bret Bielema, will be put to the test.

Jay G. Tate, Montgomery Advertiser: Auburn fans are upset with the defensive collapse against Wisconsin, but coach Tommy Tuberville is not about to panic.

Steve Kirk, Birmingham News: Key personnel losses will make for a challenging 2006 season, but coach Mike Shula says the Crimson Tide will remain a force.

Randy King, Roanoke Times: Virginia Tech finished 11-2, and anything less in 2006 will be considered a disappointment.

Eric Crawford, Louisville Courier-Journal: Louisville is trying to move forward, but Marcus Vick's cheapshot of Elvis Dumervil remains topic No. 1.

Keith Whitmire, Dallas Morning News: Texas Tech took a step forward in 2005, but two losses in the final three games left the Red Raiders feeling shortchanged (registration).

Andy Staples, Tampa Tribune: Florida returns most of its key players and the Gators are making a case to be mentioned among national title contenders in 2006.

Andy Hamilton, Iowa City Press-Citizen: Iowa's season was a disappointment, but the Hawkeyes believe the future is bright with 14 starters returning in 2006.

Ralph K.M. Haurwitz, Austin American-Statesman: A Rose Bowl ticket is worth up to $2,000, but state and federal elected officials from Texas don't have to worry about paying a cent above the face-value price of $175 (registration).

Cedric Golden, Austin American-Statesman: Who will win the Rose Bowl? Writers and selected outsiders are equally divided on the outcome (registration).

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