The website NationalChamps.net is the latest web site to post their early 2012 top 25. The big surprise is that they do not have the Boise St. Broncos listed in their top 25, but they have them just on the outside at No. 26. That is just one of a few odd choices in this poll.
1. Louisiana State
3. Southern California
6. South Carolina
10. Oklahoma State
13. Kansas State
15. Michigan State
17. Virginia Tech
19. Florida State
21. West Virginia
22. Notre Dame
24. Ohio State
25. Brigham Young
Ohio State is reasonably ranked at No. 24, unlike that Athlon poll that had them at No. 6. The top three look to be good in any order they are placed in however I would put LSU at No. 3 since they will be breaking in a brand new quarterback, but that is just nitpicking. Florida State being No. 19 is a good spot as well instead of perpetually being ranked in the top 10 and only to disappoint, yet again.
Baylor at No. 7 - They pencil in Robert Griffin III as the starter, and I assume they will update once the early entrant list for the NFL Draft is finalized.
Stanford at No. 9 - They lose their best quarterback in school history (yes better than John Elway) and an experienced offensive line. They probably should be ranked but No. 9 is way to high.
Michigan at No. 18 - Returning Denard Robinson automatically gets your team in the top 25, but they also return a lot of talent and their team is full of upper classman. Also, the defense must get better.
BYU at No. 24 - Yes they won 10 games but did you see their schedule: It included most of the WAC and they had no quality wins outside of their bowl win over Tulsa. Their 2012 schedule is a better with games at Utah, at Boise State, at Georgia Tech and at Notre Dame. Plus they host Oregon State, Hawaii and Washington State, but the other five games are essentially a WAC schedule.
Boise State not ranked - To be fair they are at No. 26, but the reason to not have them ranked is that they are losing the all-time winningest quarterback in Kellen Moore, six or seven offensive starters and half of their defense. Even with that Boise State has seemingly been able to plug in players and do well. I think a ranking around No. 20 would be appropriate.