Which team is the nation's best?

Our panel debates Bama-Oregon, tabs league winners and hot-seat coaches

Updated: October 15, 2013, 3:14 PM ET
By College Football Insiders | ESPN Insider

Helfrich-Saban AP PhotoWhich team reigns supreme: Mark Helfrich's Ducks or Nick Saban's Crimson Tide?

The college football landscape looks dramatically different following Week 7, a slate which produced a handful of huge upsets. Heavy favorites such as No. 5 Stanford and No. 12 Oklahoma lost to unranked opponents, while No. 7 Georgia fell at home to No. 25 Missouri.

As we head into Week 8, we hit the unofficial halfway point of the 2013 campaign, which marks a good time to debate which team is the best in the nation. Following No. 2 Oregon's impressive victory at No. 16 Washington, the Ducks rise to share the top spot with Alabama in ESPN's College Football Power Rankings. But which team has been better through the first half?

Insider's panel of college football experts debates that question and several others, including which teams will win the five power conferences, who will emerge as a Heisman contender in the second half and which coaches are on the hot seat.


1. Heading into the second half, which team is the best in the nation?


Kevin Weidl: Alabama. Oregon definitely opened eyes this weekend, but I still believe Alabama is the best overall team. The Crimson Tide have the leadership at the key positions. They are back to running the ball, and the defense is beginning to take the form we have grown accustomed to seeing. The Tide don't win with style points, but instead use a methodical process, and they have shown the ability to adapt to the pulse of a game and manufacture victories in multiple ways.


To read the complete article, including the experts' takes on the best team in the nation and Heisman contenders who could emerge in the second half of the season, you must be an ESPN Insider.