2011 Preseason Haven Rankings

It’s almost here ! No not the NFL season or Baseball Playoffs , but the start of the 2011 NCAA Football 2011 season. This year on Sports Haven we will have a ranking system of our top 15 teams in the nation. These rankings will be updated every sunday once the season kicks off. Like all rankings The Haven Rankings will have a formula. We will base our rankings on a number of different aspects but here is our basic formula for finding our top 15 in the country.

Here’s our formula: 

Overall Record, Strength of Schedule, Point differential, and half of the USA Today and Coaches poll points factored together

This list will be competitive and tough to rank so if any of our readers think we’re completely wrong or completely agree with us just let us know by commenting or voting in our polls. 

Atop our poll at numero uno this year is a team that is in the top 5 every year but never quite gets there. There SOS (Strength of Schedule) is in the top 5 of teams on the list. They have maybe the best QB to WR combo in the country with a good defense to boot. The Preseason Number 1 team in the Haven Rankings in none other than Boomer Sooner; Oklahoma.



  1. Oklahoma Sooners–   827 pts    SOS Grade : A-  (@FSU, A&M, MIZZOU & @ OK STATE)
  2. LSU Tigers–  798 pts   SOS Grade : A – (Oregon,@Alabama, Florida & Auburn)
  3. Oregon Ducks– 755 pts SOS Grade: (LSU,@Stanford, USC & @ Arizona)
  4. Alabama Crimson Tide– 707 pts SOS Grade: B (LSU, @ Florida ,@ Ole Miss & @Auburn)
  5. Stanford Cardinal–  695 pts SOS Grade: C+ (Oregon, @ USC, California & Notre Dame)
  6. Oklahoma State Cowboys 675 pts SOS Grade:B- (Oklahoma, @ A&M, @ Texas & @ Mizzou)
  7. Boise State Broncos– 665 pts SOS Grade:  C – (TCU, @ Georgia, Nevada & @ Fresno State)
  8. Wisconsin Badgers– 645 pts SOS Grade:  B (Nebraska,@Ohio State, Penn State & @ Michigan State
  9. Texas A&M Aggies– 640 pts SOS Grade :B+ (@ Oklahoma, Oklahoma State, Mizzou & Texas  )
  10. Florida State Seminoles– 635 pts SOS Grade: B-  (Oklahoma,@ Florida, @Clemson & Miami )
  11. South Carolina Gamecocks– 630 pts SOS Grade: B – (Florida, @ Arkansas, @ Georgia & Auburn
  12. Arkansas Razorbacks-629 pts  SOS Grade: B+ (@ LSU, @ Alabama, A&M , & South Carolina
  13. Nebraska Cornhuskers– 623 pts SOS Grade: B + (@ Wisconsin, @ Ohio State, @ Michigan & @ Penn State)
  14. Virginia Tech Hokies– 608 pts SOS Grade: C (Miami, UNC,@ Georgia Tech & Clemson)
  15. TCU Hornedfrogs– 593 pts SOS Grade: D + (@ Boise State,BYU,@SDSU & SMU)

The Analysis

 Oklahoma was a pretty easy choice at the top but after that was not as easy to grade , rank and score. Number 2 came down to LSU and Oregon ; Two very different teams with insane coaches and tremendous expectations in 2011…Guess I’ll just have to wait for Labor Day weekend when the Ducks and Tigers square off on primetime. The 4 through 7 slots were easy to fit in Bama,Stanford,OK State and Boise, but A&M and Wisconsin were close in schedule and points for the 8th slot. I picked Wisconsin based on the teams returning players, (Particularly on the offensive side of the ball.). I had to put FSU in somewhere so 10 felt like a good place… Then South Carolina just beat Arkansas for the 11th spot in our poll.Nebraska has a tough 1st year schedule wise in the Big 10 with trips to “The Big House”, “Happy Valley” , “The Horseshoe” and to top it off a visit to Camp Randall in Madison,WI…After the Cornhuskers are the Hokies who have been plagued with injuries in camp but still have a solid team intact from a season ago. And rounding out my top 15 preseason teams in TCU who is without a veteran QB and playing an AWFUL schedule that features only 1 Quality opponent (Boise).

Our  next poll will be on Monday: 9/5/11… we’ll address the 1st weekend of NCAA Football action and maybe have some shakeups atop the leaderboard.

Also in closing please take a moment and vote in our “Did We Get it Right ? ” Poll


Hokies dominating early 2012 recruiting

With the 2011 college football season right around the corner elite programs have already started their building a stellar 2012 recruiting class. One of these programs is Virginia Tech who currently has 20 verbal commits heading into the middle of July. Of their 20 pledges so far 3 are 4 star prospects by rivals.com (J.C. Coleman, Deon Clark and Jarontay Jones). These 4 star prospects can be impacts on the field by their freshman years at Tech. The top 3 recruits for tech all play different positions and will be used in different ways. We’ll start with Speedy J.C. Coleman out of Chesapeake, Virginia

  1. J.C. Coleman : (RB 5’7, 169 lbs and a 4.4 40 yards dash time) – Coleman is currently ranked the 3rd overall running back in the 2012 class nationally. What makes this speedy back so good is his ability to change directions moments before coming in contact with defenders. As you can see in the youtube video I have found he his one hard back to catch and shows signs of a young David Wilson , who will be the starting  back for this year’s Hokie Squad. Coleman chose Coach Beamer and the Hokies over 7 other schools who had given him an offer (UVA, WVU,Old Dominion, Maryland , FIU ,Vanderbilt and Duke). Coleman is currently the head of this 2012 class and will be a major success once he comes to Blacksburg.

    2.   Deon Clarke : (LB 6’2 ,205 lbs and a 4.5 40 yard dash time)- Clarke is an intresting prospect to say the least. He brings alot of size to the table standing 6’2 but not much weight to him weighing in at only 205 lbs.Like J.C. Coleman, Clarke is a local state prospect (Chesterfield,VA) .But even though he isn’t extremley solid he can still pack a pretty powerful punch. He is ranked the 14th best LB prospect in the 2012 class and just makes the cut for the top 150 prospects (142nd ranked). One of the major benefits for both Clarke and this Hokies coaching staff is that he has a ton of potential and with the right coaching (Bud Foster especially) he can become an elite LB in the ACC Conference. Clarke was also highly recruited by other schools within the confernece (Miami,UVA, Maryland, NC State and Duke).

LB Deon Clarke

 3.  Jarontay Jones: (DE 6’2 , 240 lbs and a 4.6 40 yard dash time)- Of all the recruits that the Hokies have gotten verbal commitments from Jarontay Jones appears to be the most suprising. A native of Stone Mountain,GA Jones has been a target of many bigtime SEC schools such as Georgia, Auburn, Florida and South Carolina among others. Jones is a player of raw speed and power that just flat out gets to the ball on almost every play. With his height and size he is a bit of a problem for O-linemen to handle and keep out of the backfield. But discounting his size a 4.6 40 time for a high school prospect at DE is quiet remarkable and hard to believe. To prove his talent I have found a youtube highlight reel of his Junior season on the gridiron. Jones will add to an already young, fast and powerful defensive front in Blacksburg.

There are ofcourse some other bigtime guys coming to Blacksburg in 2012. Defensive Backs like Donaldven Manning and Davion Tookes are ranked in the top 30 for the postion overall , The offensive side of the ball will not only feature J.C. Coleman but also QB Brenden Motely of nearby Christiansburg and WR’s Mark Irick and Mario Nixon who both stand over 6’3.  As always the offensive recruits look good but this class’ strongpoint is definetly on defense with numbers on the Defensive Front, Middle and Backfield.14 out of the 20 recruits being targeted for their talents on the defensive side of the ball.

So far I give this Hokie class a solid A when it comes down to grading. They so far have answered all their needs but lack recruits for the offensive line which may come back to haunt them if they sign more Defensive and offensive skill positions over talent in the trenches. They do only have 5 spots left if things stay the way that they currently are so I would look for maybe 1 0r 2 more 4 star prospects to commit then the remaining spots saved for offensive linemen.  No matter what the Hokies are pretty set for both the present and the future.

Hokie Hokie Low No Tech No!!!

What has happened to Va Tech???? The Hokies were ranked in the top 10 and looking good going into the marquee matchup with Boise State in what ended up being a home field advantage for Tech. Now Tech despite a good showing in week 1 is 0-2 mainly because of their worst performance against a D1 AA opponent in their history. The Hokies had outscored James Madison 90-0 in their previous 2 meetings and looking really good going into the game. But than game the turnovers and the poor execution on the offensive side of the ball. Things started to look good with about 2:30 minutes left than Darren Evans fumbled what looked to be another breakout run and then to put the nasty icing on this moldy cake Tech blew the game on a roughing the kicker call which gave JMU the ball back and the game.

Hokies Stunned

 What the Hokies must now do is regroup. This is definitely obvious but so important at the same time. The way I look at it both of the Hokies 2 losses should’ve and would’ve been wins and to make matters worse both were home games at least from my point of view. The Hokies will now have to win out in the ACC Conference schedule which includes trips to both UNC and Miami. I do still like Tech to win 10 games and go to the ACC Championship but it wouldn’t surprise me if they didn’t. I have been following Tech since 2006 which means I have never seen Tech win less than 10 games in a season. Fortunately for Virginia Tech they weren’t the only team to get upset in the ACC today with Georgia Tech losing to Kansas and with Miami and Florida State in pivotal non-conference games this day may be a day that the ACC’s top dogs wish they could have back. This may also be the day that the ACC hits it’s all time low.