College football is often criticized for being dominated by a repeating cast of a few elite teams. However, especially once you look beyond the playoff-level programs, there are plenty of shocking stories every single season.
Due to the nature of being a college sport, NCAA teams face much higher levels of turnover than their NFL counterparts. The very best players head for the pros, while others simply graduate and are replaced by a fresh crop of recruits.
Thanks to this roster shuffle, along with the constant coaching carousel, programs can make massive leaps (or take massive steps back) from one season to the next. Here are five teams that, for good or bad, might deliver some of these biggest twists in the 2020 season.
I know, I know. Predicting Texas to finally return to its days as a perennial Big 12 and national championship contender is so cliche it has literally become a meme. Even simulations say this isn’t the Longhorns’ year. But there are reasons to believe they may finally return to the top in 2020.
Although finishing 8-5 in 2019 was disappointing given the Longhorns came into the season ranked in the top 10, this record doesn’t tell the whole story. Texas showed it was able to hang with top teams. The Longhorns lost by one score to both the Big 12 and national champions Oklahoma and LSU, and dominated Utah in the Alamo Bowl. However, they also struggled with consistency, especially late in the season, where they fell twice to unranked opponents.