Every day, college football programs across the country are searching for ways to get better. Nutrition, conditioning, schemes and leadership all play a part, but making sure the on-campus talent pool is as good as it can be is priority No. 1.
Recruiting and development are the catalysts for improvement. Transfers can help, but for the most part, coaches must do the majority of the work themselves.
But what if these guys could make trades? You know, really make things interesting. It's a staple in professional sports, so imagine if Michigan State could make a New York Knicks-like trade for a Derrick Rose type in order to get closer to Alabama's level.
What would the elites in college football do to get better for the upcoming 2016 season and beyond if there were a trading block? We put some of our best college football minds together and took a shot at it.
Alabama LB Tim Williams and QB David Cornwell for North Carolina QB Mitch Trubisky
Why it makes sense for Alabama: Sure, Lane Kiffin has proved he can win with any quarterback at Alabama, and losing a stud pass-rusher like Williams (10.5 sacks) will sting, but Alabama would have even more stability at quarterback. Trubisky is proven with 1,014 yards and 11 touchdowns in two seasons as a backup. The redshirt junior also has 131 rushing yards and three scores. Plus, Alabama still has Ryan Anderson, Reuben Foster, Shaun Dion Hamilton and Rashaan Evans ready to go at linebacker. -- Edward Aschoff
Why it makes sense for North Carolina: This decision was agonizing because Trubisky is a veteran in the system and was expected to give the Tar Heels a seamless transition at quarterback. But on the other hand, he would be a first-year starter -- same as whoever takes over the job with Trubisky gone. There are talented players at receiver, running back and along the offensive line to ease the transition. Tim Williams is an absolute difference-maker, something the UNC defense needs with its most dynamic linebackers gone. -- Andrea Adelson
TCU LB Ty Summers for Oregon CB Ugo Amadi
Why it makes sense for TCU: The cornerback position at TCU is badly in need of experienced young talent like Amadi, who played in 13 games -- and started four -- as a true freshman. Amadi has the experience and skills to slide right into a starting role, yet still has the raw talent and upside to be molded into the type of shutdown cornerback that is commonplace at Amon G. Carter Stadium. Losing Summers hurts, but the Horned Frogs have the linebacker depth to overcome his departure. -- Brandon Chatmon
Why it makes sense for Oregon: The Ducks are unproven in their linebacking corps, as Brady Hoke's new 4-3 scheme will break in all new starters. Summers can be a star: He exploded for 23 tackles against Baylor to earn National Defensive Player of the Week honors last year. The Ducks, of course, were not great in the secondary last year, but they do have bodies to pick up the slack behind Amadi, starting with Arrion Springs, Malik Lovette and Chris Seisay. -- David Lombardi
Clemson WR Mike Williams for Washington DB Kevin King and OLB Joe Mathis
Why it makes sense for Clemson: Receiver is the deepest position on the Clemson roster, so parting with Williams for much-needed help on defense makes sense. Clemson returns four of its top five receivers from a team that made the national championship game a year ago. Williams is not included in that group. Finding an experienced replacement for Mackensie Alexander in the secondary, and adding Mathis to help bolster linebacker/defensive end depth, makes Clemson stronger. -- Adelson
Why it makes sense for Washington: The Huskies have a budding young quarterback, promising young running back and a proven, deep defense. So why not take some of the defensive surplus and use it to give Jake Browning -- that talented young quarterback -- an electric weapon to work with? Williams would give the Washington offense a juggernaut's potential. A deep secondary led by Sidney Jones and Budda Baker would absorb the loss of King, while Mathis' departure would be a necessary trade-off for greater scoring potential. -- Lombardi
USC RB Ronald Jones II for Ole Miss DEs Fadol Brown and John Youngblood
Why it makes sense for USC: Both quality and depth are needed for USC along the defensive line, and this trade helps Clay Helton score both after losing all three starters there. Brown is a proven 6-foot-4, 273-pound athlete with a track record of getting to the quarterback, after leading the Rebels' deep front with 10 quarterback hurries last season. Youngblood would bring immediate leadership. It's easier to swallow Jones' loss with Justin Davis and a host of touted young backs champing at the bit for more carries. -- Lombardi
Why it makes sense for Ole Miss: It's no secret that the Rebels' running backs have struggled with consistency over the past few years. Enter Jones, who rushed for 987 yards and eight touchdowns as a freshman last year. Parting with a starter in Brown and a solid backup in Youngblood up front hurts, but with the depth along the line, Ole Miss comes out ahead with an elite back to complement QB Chad Kelly and that explosive passing game. -- Aschoff
LSU NT Davon Godchaux for Baylor QB Jarrett Stidham
Why it makes sense for LSU: Brandon Harris made strides this spring, but he has never looked as good as Stidham did when he passed for 1,265 yards, 12 touchdowns and two interceptions last year. He took over as Baylor's starter after seven games, so he had plenty of big-game experience as a freshman. LSU also has plenty of depth in the middle of its defensive line to replace Godchaux by committee. With the points LSU will now be scoring, it won't need a Godchaux. -- Aschoff
Why it makes sense for Baylor: Dominant defensive tackles are hard to find and Godchaux would walk right into the Bears' starting lineup after recording six sacks and nine tackles for loss as a sophomore. Andrew Billings' departure will hurt the Bears in a major way in 2016, but the addition of Godchaux, despite the loss of a promising, young signal-caller in Stidham, will help lessen the loss. Now new head coach Jim Grobe has someone to build Baylor's defense around. -- Chatmon
Nebraska WR Jordan Westerkamp for Tennessee RB Alvin Kamara
Why it makes sense for Nebraska: Losing Westerkamp -- a beloved and highly productive player -- hurts. But as Nebraska learned last year, you win in the Big Ten by running the ball. And the Cornhuskers need a big-time, home run threat at tailback. Enter Kamara, who averaged 6.5 yards per carry in the SEC last year while scoring 10 TDs. Nebraska has enough depth at receiver to accept this significant upgrade in speed and playmaking ability in the backfield. -- Brian Bennett
Why it makes sense for Tennessee: Kamara can do just about everything for the Vols, but Tennessee needs a topflight wide receiver to help out Joshua Dobbs. If Tennessee didn't already have Heisman contender Jalen Hurd, this trade wouldn't happen. And the Vols feel good about sophomore John Kelly, so why not help Dobbs out with a guy who caught 65 passes for 918 yards and seven touchdowns last year? That's more than double the total yards of any Tennessee receiver in 2015. -- Aschoff
Oklahoma State WR Marcell Ateman for Wisconsin RB Corey Clement
Why it makes sense for Oklahoma State: You can never have too many running backs. It's a tough lesson the Cowboys have learned over the past few years, so adding Clement and Barry J. Sanders gives Oklahoma State a pair of proven quality options to put alongside Mason Rudolph in the offensive backfield. Balance should make Rudolph and James Washington even more explosive, so losing Ateman is worth it to ensure the Cowboys' passing game is complemented by a big-play running threat. -- Chatmon
Why it makes sense for Wisconsin: The Badgers hate to give up Clement, a special talent who averaged 6.5 yards per carry in 2014. But let's face it: Wisconsin is an assembly line for great tailbacks. What this program needs is an elite-level wide receiver to stretch the field. Ateman averaged 17 yards per catch last season, and at 6-foot-4 and 210 pounds, is a pass-catching specimen rarely seen in Madison. He should help Wisconsin's offense find a different gear. -- Bennett