Joel Klatt reveals post-spring college football top 25 teams

We’re deep in the throes of the offseason, which means most college football teams are focusing on recruiting. But that doesn’t mean we can’t look forward to the upcoming 2023 season.

Though it’s still three and a half months away, the college football season is now closer than the 2022 season is in the rearview mirror. And one of the best in the business has weighed in on who he expects to be contenders.

Appearing on his podcast, Fox Sports’ premier color commentator Joel Klatt broke down which teams he feels are in the top 25 at the moment now that spring ball is over. Here is who he has in his personal rankings as well as our brief thoughts about each.

Georgia Bulldogs

Photo: Isaiah Hole

2022 record: 15-0

Our take: Lost basically the rest of the 2021-22 national championship teams, but has earned the benefit of the doubt that it can get back and win a third-straight.

Michigan Wolverines

Photo: Isaiah Hole

2022 record: 13-1

Our take: The expectation is at least making the national championship game. With this much returning talent, anything less would be a resounding disappointment.

Ohio State Buckeyes

Photo: Isaiah Hole

2022 record: 12-2

Our take: A lot of talented receivers and a solid, but not elite defense, but no returning starting quarterback. This could be a boom or bust year for the Buckeyes.

Alabama Crimson Tide

Photo: Isaiah Hole

2022 record: 11-2

Our take: You can’t count out Nick Saban as he’s the GOAT, but is Jalen Millroe the answer at quarterback? This feels like a dynasty at the beginning of decline.

Penn State Nittany Lions

Photo: Isaiah Hole

2022 record: 11-2

Our take: If Penn State didn’t have to contend with Michigan football and Ohio State, it would be in a very different scenario. They’re ranked about right, but the ceiling is probably what it achieved last season.

USC Trojans

Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports

2022 record: 11-3

Our take: With the reigning Heisman Trophy winner leading the charge, expectations are rightfully through the roof for the Trojans entering Lincoln Riley’s second year at the helm.

LSU Tigers

Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports

2022 record: 10-4

Our take: After a season-opening loss to Florida State, LSU rebounded nicely under Brian Kelly. The Tigers have a lot of talent returning but has to contend with the other SEC powerhouses.

Florida State Seminoles

Photo: Isaiah Hole

2022 record: 10-3

Our take: It’s too early to tell if Mike Norvell really has the Seminoles back after wandering in the wilderness for half a decade. It was a good season last year, but there’s more for the taking in the ACC.

Washington Huskies

Photo by Tom Hauck/Getty Images

2022 record: 11-2

Our take: Michael Penix Jr. is a legit Heisman contender and Kalen DeBoer has the Huskies humming like it was the early 1990s.

Tennessee Volunteers

Syndication: The Knoxville News-Sentinel

2022 record: 11-2

Our take: There’s no telling whether or not Joe Milton will be able to take the mantle from Hendon Hooker, especially without Jalin Hyatt. The Vols should be talented, but the defense is still concerning.

Utah Utes

Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports

2022 record: 10-4

Our take: Utah should get more credit for winning the Pac-12 last year, beating USC twice, and bringing back QB Cam Rising.

Oregon Ducks

(AP Photo/Jay LaPrete)

2022 record: 10-3

Our take: If it weren’t for the final game of the regular season, a loss to Oregon State, Dan Lanning would be sitting pretty in Eugene. The Ducks have more competition in-conference but should still be a force.

Notre Dame Fighting Irish

Matt Cashore-USA TODAY Sports

2022 record: 9-4

Our take: Conversely, Notre Dame might be getting too much hype. While the Irish finished the season nicely last year, we still don’t know the makeup of Marcus Freeman as the head coach.

Clemson Tigers

(Photo by Jacob Kupferman/Getty Images)

2022 record: 11-3

Our take: Clemson is surprisingly underhyped and should be getting a lot more love, especially with Cade Klubnik taking over under center.

TCU Horned Frogs

Photo: Isaiah Hole

2022 record: 13-2

Our take: It’s going to be difficult to replace so many talented and gritty players from last year, but Sonny Dykes worked miracles in his first year, we’ll see if he can do it again.

Oregon State Beavers

Syndication: Statesman Journal

2022 record: 10-3

Our take: The Beavers had a quietly good season last year and should be getting more credit. We’ll see if they can repeat in 2023.

Texas Longhorns

Scott Wachter-USA TODAY Sports

2022 record: 8-5

Our take: Texas theoretically should have some of the best quarterback play in the country, but it loses Bijan Robinson and has to play Alabama. Everyone’s rushing for the Longhorns to be back, but they haven’t been back for over a decade — and still may not be.

Kansas State Wildcats

AP Photo/Nate Billings

2022 record: 10-4

Our take: Many forget that it was Kansas State that won the Big 12 last year. Chris Klieman has done a fantastic job and very well could repeat.

Oklahoma Sooners

Kevin Jairaj-USA TODAY Sports

2022 record: 6-7

Our take: This is where we’ll have to have our first, big disagreement. Oklahoma was awful last year, and there’s no telling that it’ll improve greatly under Brent Venables as head coach. But still, the Sooners are in a wide-open conference — this year.

Ole Miss Rebels

Photo: Stephen Lew-USA TODAY Sports

2022 record: 8-5

Our take: The question at this juncture isn’t the offense — it’s the defense. Fix the defense and get it playing at a similar, but lesser, level as the Rebels’ counterparts in the SEC, and they’ll be a force.

North Carolina Tar Heels

Rich Storry-USA TODAY Sports

2022 record: 9-5

Our take: This is about right where UNC should always be, yet it’s always thought of preseason as a top 10-type of group. Drake Maye very well could lift this team well beyond preseason expectations.

Iowa Hawkeyes

Photo: Isaiah Hole

2022 record: 8-5

Our take: Despite defensive losses, the questions are on offense, where Iowa added former Wolverines Cade McNamara and Erick All. Again, playing in the Big Ten West could be a huge boon for the Hawkeyes.

Wisconsin Badgers

Photo: Isaiah Hole

2022 record: 7-6

Our take: There’s no telling how much the offense will change with Phil Longo being Luke Fickell’s first offensive coordinator, but with that defense, running back Braelon Allen, and playing in the Big Ten West, anything can happen.

Texas Tech Red Raiders

Casey Sapio-USA TODAY Sports

2022 record: 8-5

Our take: Texas Tech quietly had a good season last year, and despite some prohibitive favorites (we’ll get to that more later) there aren’t any definitive favorites.

UCLA Bruins

Jayne Kamin-Oncea-USA TODAY Sports

2022 record: 9-4

Our take: It’s going to be tough to replace the duo of Dorian Thompson-Robinson and Zach Charbonnet, but Chip Kelly is a mastermind head coach and the Pac-12 is there for the taking.

Story originally appeared on Wolverines Wire

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