Ranking contenders with fewest flaws
September, 30, 2013
By Travis Haney | ESPN.com
Getty ImagesHow do Mark Helfrich's Ducks, Urban Meyer's Buckeyes and Nick Saban's Tide stack up?It’s almost October, and there are still at least a half-dozen teams -- if not more -- that could make a solid claim that they deserve to be ranked No. 1.
Why the lack of separation? Well, for the most part, it’s because of the flaws each team has. There is no perfect team, despite how much everyone is looking for one. It’s just a matter of which team or teams can mask their flaws and find ways to win games.
So let’s rank the contenders based on which ones have the fewest weaknesses, since those are what could wind up costing them at some point this fall.
According to several coaches I’ve talked to, the Ducks are the most complete team in the country -- even without Chip Kelly. “If they played today, I think they’d beat Alabama,” one coach told me last week. “That has as much to do with Oregon being good as Alabama not being as good.” I agree.