The calendar turned to July, which means another step closer to the beginning of the 2021 college football season. A return to normalcy should be the headline for college football, with most stadiums returning to full capacity in the fall.
Let’s take a look into the teams you should know about this season, as conference media days are set to begin later this month. We continue our analysis with the five teams ranked 11-15 to win the 2021-22 National Championship, according to MyBookie.ag. Let’s get right to it so you can plan your bets against their National Championship odds.
College Football Team Analysis Series – Top 11-15 Teams
Notre Dame Fighting Irish (+4000)
Notre Dame is one of the top teams in the country that will need to completely retool on offense. The Irish have to replace nine starters on offense, including departed quarterback Ian Book. Head coach Brian Kelly also has to replace defensive coordinator Clark Lea who left to take over head coaching duties at Vanderbilt.
Jack Coan transferred from Wisconsin and is expected to take over quarterback duties, giving the Irish a veteran under center. Running backs Kyren Williams and Chris Tyree are back in the backfield and look for tight end Michael Mayer to be a household name by the end of the year.
USC Trojans (+4000)
The Trojans lone defeat last season in the pandemic-shortened season was to the Oregon Ducks in the Pac-12 title match. USC welcomes back a slew of players that have made at least one collegiate game, headlined by quarterback Kedon Solvis.
The USC offense won’t lack firepower with the return of running back Vavae Malepeai and wide receiver Drake London. Defensively, the USC Trojans must replace Talanoa Hufanga, who was the Pac-12 Defensive Player of the Year in 2020.
North Carolina Tar Heels (+4000)
North Carolina could be considered by some as a sneaky pick to slide into the CFP in 2021. The Tar Heels bring back 21 of 22 starters from its bowl game and have a manageable schedule. Sam Howell returns for his third season under center but must replace the majority of its star power from last season.
On the defensive side of the ball, there is optimism in Chapel Hill that the Tar Heels will showcase major improvements this season. UNC will have one of the best defensive backfields in the conference and possess more beef upfront after years of playing undersized on the defensive line.
Oregon Ducks (+4000)
Oregon repeated as Pac-12 champs last season, but only after the Washington Huskies could not compete for the title. The Oregon Ducks welcome back a trio of players that contributed in 2019 but elected to opt-out in 2020.
Joe Moorehead gets an entire offseason to install his offense after the pandemic cut spring practice short. Kayvon Thibodeaux was voted the Pac-12’s best defensive lineman as a sophomore and should be a top-10 pick in next year’s NFL Draft.
Miami Hurricanes (+4500)
D’Eriq King made noise before last season’s bowl game announcing his intentions to return to campus in 2021. With King back under center, the Hurricanes look poised to shake up the ACC this season.
Offensively, the Miami Hurricanes have depth at every skilled position but will need the offensive line to take a significant step forward. Miami regressed statistically last season on defense, and it caused head coach Manny Diaz to shake up his staff with three new position coaches and a new play-caller.