The Spartans look like the team to beat in the Big Ten this coming season, after finishing 13-1 and defeating Stanford 24-20 in the Rose Bowl Game presented by VIZIO. Michigan State didn't lose any underclassmen to the NFL draft and somehow managed to keep defensive coordinator Pat Narduzzi for at least one more season. But MSU will have to replace a lot of very productive players from its stingy defense, including All-American cornerback Darqueze Dennard
, linebackers Max Bullough
and Denicos Allen
, and tackles Tyler Hoover
and Micajah Reynolds
. MSU's offense should be much improved with quarterback Connor Cook
and tailback Jeremy Langford
coming back. Cook threw for 2,755 yards with 22 touchdowns this past season, while Langford ran for 1,422 yards with 18 touchdowns.
For more on how the Spartans will look in 2014, check out Michigan State's recruiting profile and ESPN RecruitingNation's class rankings.
Oklahoma was supposed to be rebuilding in 2013, but the campaign instead turned out to be a resurgence after an 11-2 finish. The Sooners upset then-No. 3 Alabama in the Allstate Sugar Bowl and carry a lot of momentum into the offseason. Most importantly, rising sophomore Trevor Knight
gained a lot of confidence during bowl practices and the bowl game, throwing for 348 yards with four touchdowns against the Tide. OU loses center Gabe Ikard
, receiver Jalen Saunders
and tailbacks Brennan Clay
and Damien Williams
, but incoming freshmen Joe Mixon and Samaje Perine might be able to help the running game right away. Nine starters are expected back from OU's much-improved defense; safety Gabe Lynn
and cornerback Aaron Colvin
are the only starters leaving.
For more on how the Sooners will look in 2014, check out Oklahoma's recruiting profile and ESPN RecruitingNation's class rankings.
Are the Bruins ready to unseat Oregon and Stanford as the elite team in the Pac-12? The Bruins might be pretty close to doing it, especially after rising junior quarterback Brett Hundley
passed up a chance to become a potential first-round pick in the NFL draft and returned to UCLA for one more season. Nine starters are expected back on offense; the Bruins lose junior left tackle Xavier Su'a-Filo
and receiver Shaq Evans
. UCLA started five freshmen and sophomores on defense last season, and seven starters might return, including two-way star Myles Jack
. The Bruins will have to replace All-America linebacker Anthony Barr
and linebacker Jordan Zumwalt
, along with tackle Seali'i Epenesa
and end Cassius Marsh
For more on how the Bruins will look in 2014, check out UCLA's recruiting profile and ESPN RecruitingNation's class rankings.