With the start of the 2022 college football season just one week away, this is everyone’s last opportunity to make their college football predictions for the season – and we’re ready to play along. Like any other sport, the new season can bring a range of surprises – anything is possible.
Starting Saturday, August 27th, 131 Division I football teams will all be competing with the same goal in mind – earning a ticket to the College Football Playoff. In the end, only four tickets will be handed out and they’ll fight for it all in a knockout playoff tournament where losers go home.
Of course, the 2023 College Football Playoff National Championship Game won’t be held until January 9, 2023. There’s a lot that can happen between now and then – one loss can rewrite your entire season and could be the reason your team is excluded from that coveted ‘final four.’
Follow Along As We Make Our 2022-23 College Football Predictions
Every year, college football fans and analysts try to prophesize what might happen in the coming months – something we’re prepared to do with our 2022-23 college football predictions. We’re going to detail which teams will end the regular season in the AP’s illustrious Top-25.
They’ve already released their annual preseason poll, largely based on the teams’ performance last season and through the offseason. From this point forward, they’ll re-evaluate their rankings on a weekly basis throughout the season – ultimately determining the four playoff teams.
With that said, the preseason poll doesn’t mean much – especially considering how much things can change in the matter of 13 weeks. With plenty of marquee matchups between now and January, let’s see if we can predict which teams will crack the Top-25 by the end of the year.
25. Houston Cougars
The Houston Cougars enter the 2022 season in what could be their final year in the American Athletic Conference – they accepted a bid to join the Big 12 in September 2021. With head coach Dana Holgorsen entering his fourth season with the team, they’re just one of two AAC teams to rank in the Preseason Top 25. Expect big things from QB Clayton Tune, WR Nathaniel Dell, and LB Donavan Mutin.
24. Wake Forest Demon Deacons
Wake Forest is led by ninth-year head coach Dave Clawson and is one of five teams in the ACC to crack the Preseason Top 25. They have some tough matchups this season, including NC State (on the road) and Clemson (at home). Their first game is scheduled for September 1st against the Virginia Military Institute, which should help them get their season off to a good start.
23. Penn State Nittany Lions
The Penn State Nittany Lions might not be featured in the AP’s Preseason Top 25, but we’re predicting a surprising season from the team. Led by ninth-year head coach James Franklin, they have marquee matchups against Michigan, Ohio State, and Michigan State. A win against any of those teams could help them in the polls, but they need to win the rest of their games.
22. Pittsburgh Panthers
The Pittsburgh Panthers are led by eighth-year head coach Pat Narduzzi and have a new offensive coordinator in Frank Cignetti Jr. – which could be a good thing or a bad thing. With games against Tennessee in Week 2 and Miami to end the regular season, they have several opportunities to prove themselves. It’ll be hard without Kenny Pickett, but we like their chances.
21. Ole Miss Rebels
Ole Miss is led by third-year head coach Lane Kiffin and are coming off a 10-3 regular season a year ago – the first 10-win regular season in campus history. With games against Kentucky, LSU, Texas A&M, Alabama, and Arkansas, their schedule will be tough. They aren’t expected to beat all of those teams, but winning 2-3 of them will bode well for them in the polls.
20. Kentucky Wildcats
The Kentucky Wildcats enter the season with 10th-year head coach Mark Stoops and open the season at home on September 3rd against Miami (OH) – a great way to make a statement, if they win. They also play Ole Miss, Tennessee, and Georgia as the season goes on. We’re looking forward to a potential upset at home against Georgia, but that’s a bold prediction.
19. Wisconsin Badgers
The Wisconsin Badgers are led by eighth-year head coach Paul Chryst and are the only Big Ten team in the West Division to land on the AP’s Preseason Top 25. They lost quite a few players to the NFL Draft this offseason, but have a quality incoming class and a quarterback, Graham Mertz, with a lot to prove. They have marquee matchups with Ohio State and Michigan State.
18. Miami Hurricanes
Miami (OH) is entering the 2022-23 season with a new coaching staff – head coach Mario Cristobal, offensive coordinator Josh Gattis, and defensive coordinator Kevin Steele are all in their first season with the team. With marquee matchups against Texas A&M, Clemson, and Pittsburgh, they can really shoot up the rankings by winning two of those three games.
17. Arkansas Razorbacks
The Arkansas Razorbacks have head coach Sam Pitttman and both of his coordinators returning for their third season together. They have a tough schedule that features Cincinnati, Texas A&M, Alabama, BYU, LSU, and Ole Miss – among others. They gained some quality talent in the transfer portal, including a five-star wide receiver and linebacker.
16. Texas Longhorns
The Texas Longhorns weren’t included in the AP’s preseason Top 25, but we’re predicting a big season from this team. Head coach Steve Sarkisian and his coordinators are returning for their second season together after a disappointing 5-7 record in 2021. I think they’ll surprise us in 2022 with marquee matchups against Alabama, Oklahoma, Oklahoma State, TCU, and Baylor.
15. Michigan State Spartans
Michigan State is coming off an impressive 11-2 record a year ago. With Mel Tucker entering his third season, you can expect another impressive showing in 2022 – especially considering their top receiver and leading tackler are both returning in 2022. They play Ohio State, Wisconsin, and Michigan back-to-back-to-back, which could solidify or damage their top-ten status.
14. Oklahoma State Cowboys
The Cowboys are led by 18th-year head coach Mike Gundy, but have a new DC in Derek Mason. They’re expected to be the third-best team in the Big 12, behind Oklahoma and Baylor – they play both teams this season. Their success will hinge on performances by QB Spencer Sanders, RB Dominic Richardson, and DEs Brock Martin and Collin Oliver.
13. NC State Wolfpack
The NC State Wolfpack are led by Dave Doeren, who’s entering his 10th season as head coach of the team. They went 9-3 last season and have a relatively easy schedule this season until meeting Clemson in Week 5. They also play Wake Forest on November 5th, which could make or break their season. They shouldn’t have a problem with any of their other conference games.
12. Oregon Ducks
The Oregon Ducks are unleashing a new coaching staff in 2022 – including head coach Dan Lanning, two co-offensive coordinators, and two co-defensive coordinators. They’re expected to be the second-best team in the Pac-12. Oregon has a good offensive line, but questions at quarterback could set this team back. LB Noah Sewell and DL Brandon Dorius should anchor this defense well.
11. Baylor Bears
The Baylor Bears weren’t expected to be good last season, but they finished 10-2 and are now expected by many to be the best team in the Big 12. With key matchups against BYU, Oklahoma State, Oklahoma, TCU, and Texas, this team can find themselves in the top ten. We think they’ll miss it by one spot, but their offensive line could help them move up in the polls.
10. Oklahoma Sooners
This top-ten spot could be given to Baylor, but we think Oklahoma will beat them on November 5th to gain the upper edge. Under first-year head coach Brent Venables – and an entirely new coaching staff behind him – Oklahoma can have a very good or very disappointing season. A lot of it will depend on QB Dillon Gabriel, WR Marvin Mims, RB Eric Gray, and the offensive line.
9. Michigan Wolverines
The Michigan Wolverines are led by eighth-year head coach Jim Harbaugh, but have a new defensive coordinator, co-defensive coordinator, and co-offensive coordinator. Key matchups against Penn State, Michigan State, and Ohio State (to end the season) will make or break their season. They need to do better than their 12-2 record a year ago if they want a shot at the playoffs.
8. Utah Utes
The Utah Utes are led by 18th-year head coach Kyle Whittingham after going 10-4 a year ago, reaching their first ever Rose Bowl appearance – a loss to Ohio State. If they want to finish in the top-ten, they’ll need at least 10 wins, including a win against Oregon or USC (if not both). QB Cam Rising and RB Tavion Thomas will have to anchor this offense, which they will need a lot of.
7. USC Trojans
The USC Trojans are expected to be the third-best team in the Pac-12, but we think they’re going to surprise everyone and be the No. 1 team in the conference. Wins against Utah and Notre Dame would all-but solidify that. I’m excited to see this offense with QB Caleb Williams and his two receivers Jordan Addison and Mario Williams, but don’t overlook that defense!
6. Texas A&M Aggies
The Texas A&M Aggies are led by fifth-year head coach Jimbo Fisher, who was involved in quite the entertaining beef with Nick Saban this offseason. He’ll put his money where his mouth is in 2022, with key matchups against Arkansas, Alabama, Ole Miss, Auburn, and LSU. They’ll need a big year from RB Devon Achane, QB Max Johnson, DB Jaylon Jones, and WR Ainias Smith.
5. Clemson Tigers
The Clemson Tigers have Dabo Swinney returning for his 15th season with the team and while they should have a good record by season’s end, I think they’ll struggle several times this season. They have tough matchups with Wake Forest, NC State, and Notre Dame, and I think it’s possible they drop at least one of them – if not two. Their defense will keep them in a lot of games, though.
4. Ohio State Buckeyes
The Ohio State Buckeyes could be the top team this season, but I think a Week 1 loss to Notre Dame will set them on the wrong path – especially considering they also have matchups with Wisconsin, Michigan State, Penn State, and Michigan later in the year. They have the talent, but the question is whether or not Ryan Day can bring that talent together under first-year defensive coordinator Jim Knowles.
3. Notre Dame Fighting Irish
The Notre Dame Fighting Irish have a new head coach (Marcus Freeman) and defensive coordinator (Al Golden), but I think they’ll be fine this season. Aside from their Week 1 matchup against Ohio State, they also have tough games against BUY, Clemson, and USC. I think their defense will be top-notch, but their quarterback room will have to prove themselves worthy.
2. Georgia Bulldogs
The Georgia Bulldogs are led by seventh-year head coach Kirby Smart after defeating Alabama in last year’s national championship game. They lost 15 players to the NFL Draft, but still have one of the best rosters in college football. Their offense should be as explosive as ever, but their defensive line will have a lot to prove – keep an eye on DT Jalen Carter.
1. Alabama Crimson Tide
The Alabama Crimson Tide are led by 16th-year head coach Nick Saban after going 13-2 a year ago. They have a lot of exciting talent in QB Bryce Young, LB Will Anderson Jr., WR Jermaine Burton, DB Jordan Battle, LB Henry To’o To’o, and LB Jaylen Moody. If they can get past Texas, Arkansas, Texas A&M, Tennessee, Ole Miss, and Auburn, they’ll be No. 1.
Other College Football Predictions for the 2022 Season
Searching for more college football predictions to get you fired up for the season ahead? Don’t worry, we’ve got you covered. For example, we’re predicting that C.J. Stroud (QB, Ohio State) will win both the Heisman Trophy (MVP) and Davey O’Brien Award (Best QB) this season.
We’re also predicting that Will Anderson Jr. (OLB, Alabama) will take home both the Bednarik Award and Bronko Nagurski Trophy as the nation’s Defensive Player of the Year. He’s the reigning Bronko Nagurski Trophy winner and is expected to have similar production in 2022.
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According to our 2022-23 college football predictions from above, the College Football Playoff will feature the Alabama Crimson Tide, Georgia Bulldogs, Notre Dame Fighting Irish, and Ohio State Buckeyes. To further that prediction, we’re going with Notre Dame to win the national title.
30 of the Best D1 NCAAF Commitments So Far and Who to Watch Out For
Every year, a new generation of D1 NCAAF commitments declare their intent to play college ball at a university of their choice. Although not every player receives massive media attention, the top recruits are often given the spotlight as they commit to the college that recruited them best.
As of right now, a majority of the 2022 recruiting class has already enrolled at their respective college or university. In fact, they’re getting ready for the start of the college football season – which is set to begin on August 27th. Soon, we’ll see those D1 NCAAF commitments in action.
Some of the top 2022 recruits who will take the field for the first time this year are Walter Nolen, Travis Hunter, Gabe Brownlow–Dindy, Harold Perkins, Luther Burden, Lebbeus Overton, Shemar Stewart, Zach Rice, Domani Jackson, Devon Campbell, and Tyler Booker.
Who Are the Best D1 NCAAF Commitments in 2023?
While the best 2022 D1 NCAAF commitments are already preparing for the upcoming season with their new team, we’re finally starting to see some of the top 2023 D1 NCAAF commitments declare their intent. This is good news, considering the 2023 class has some true studs in it.
The 2023 D1 NCAAF commitments below are entering their senior year in high school, meaning they’re just one year away from starting their college career – one step closer to the ultimate dream of playing in the NFL. In fact, we’ll likely see a lot of these players in the NFL soon.
Don’t worry, we’re going to highlight 30 of the top D1 NCAAF commitments so far this season. Keep in mind these are high school seniors who won’t be playing college ball for another year – while they might commit to a college today, that commitment can always change in the future.
30. Eli Holstein
Eli Holstein is a 6’4’’, 225-pound pocket passer quarterback from Zachary High School in Zachary, Louisiana. ESPN gives the four-star recruit an 86 grade heading into his senior year. As of May 24, 2022, Holstein has committed to the University of Alabama Crimson Tide. He’s the 59th ranked player in his class.
29. Noah Rogers
Noah Rogers is a 6’2’’, 185-pound wide receiver from Rolesville High School in Rolesville, North Carolina. ESPN is giving the four-star recruit an 86 grade heading into his senior year of high school. As of June 22, 2022, Rogers has committed to the Ohio State University Buckeyes. He’s the 57th ranked player in his class.
28. Raylen Wilson
Raylen Wilson is a 6’2’’, 215-pound outside linebacker from Lincoln High School in Tallahassee, Florida. ESPN is giving the four-star recruit a grade of 86 as he enters his senior season. As of July 10, 2022, Wilson is committed to the University of Georgia Bulldogs – the defending champs. He’s the 56th ranked player in his class.
27. Jalen Brown
Jalen Brown is a 6’1’’, 170-pound wide receiver who is playing high school football at Gulliver Prep High School in Miami, Florida. ESPN is grading him an 86 as a four-star recruit entering his senior year. As of July 8, 2022, he has committed to the Louisiana State University (LSU) Tigers. He’s the 53rd ranked player in his class.
26. Peyton Bowen
Peyton Bowen is a 6’0’’, 185-pound safety who is playing high school football at John H. Guyer High School in Denton, Texas. The four-star recruit has received an 86 grade entering his final year before college. He started the New Year off right, committing to the University of Notre Dame Fighting Irish on January 1, 2022. He’s the 49th ranked player in his class.
25. Chandavian Bradley
Chandavian Bradley is a 6’5’’, 210-pound defensive end who is currently playing for Platte County R-III High School in Platte City, Missouri. ESPN is grading him an 86 as a four-star recruit entering the 2022 season. He committed to the University of Tennessee Volunteers on July 10, 2022. He’s the 47th ranked player in his class.
24. Braylon James
Braylon James is a 6’2’’-175-pound wide receiver from Del Valle High School in Del Valle, Texas. The four-star recruit is currently graded an 86 heading into his senior year, and has already committed to the University of Notre Dame Fighting Irish – as of April 19, 2022. He’s the 46th ranked player in his class.
23. J’ven Williams
J’ven Williams is a 6’4’’, 285-pound offensive guard who plays high school football at Wyoming Area High School in Exeter, Pennsylvania. He has an 86 grade, according to ESPN. The four-star recruit committed to the Penn State University Nittany Lions on February 6, 2022. He’s the 45th ranked player in his class.
22. Johntay Cook II
Johntay Cook II is a 6’0’’, 175-pound wide receiver who currently plays for DeSoto High School in DeSoto, Texas. ESPN is grading him an 86 as he prepares for his senior season at DeSoto. The four-star recruit committed to the University of Texas Longhorns on June 29, 2022. He’s the 43rd ranked player in his class.
21. Elliot Washington
Elliot Washington is a 6’0’’, 190-pound safety who plays high school ball at Venice High School in Venice, Florida. ESPN is grading the four-star recruit an 86 ahead of the 2022 senior season. As of July 8, 2022, Washington has committed to the Penn State University Nittany Lions’ football team. He’s the 42nd ranked player in his class.
20. Jason Moore
Jason Moore is a 6’6, 260-pound defensive end from DeMatha Catholic High School in Hyattsville, Maryland. He is currently graded at an 86 by ESPN as he prepares for his final year of high school football. As of July 10, 2022, Moore has committed to playing for the Ohio State University Buckeyes. He’s the 41st ranked player in his class.
19. Jackson Arnold
Jackson Arnold is a 6’1’’, 195-pound dual-threat quarterback who plays high school ball at John H. Guyer High School in Denton, Texas – the same high school as safety Peyton Bowen from above. Unlike his teammate, who went to Notre Dame, the four-star recruit has committed to the University of Oklahoma Sooners. He’s the 39th ranked player in his class.
18. Jaquaize Pettaway
Jaquaize Pettaway is a 5’11, 180-pound wide receiver who plays high school football at Langham Creek High in Houston, Texas. Graded an 86 by ESPN, the four-star recruit will be receiving passes from Jackson Arnold after committing to the University of Oklahoma Sooners on July 6, 2022. He’s the 33rd ranked player in his class.
17. Rueben Owens II
Rueben Owens II is a 5’11’’, 180-pound running back who currently plays for El Campo High School in El Campo, Texas. ESPN has the four-star recruit graded at an 86 ahead of his senior year. As of June 20, 2022, Owens II has committed to playing for the University of Louisville Cardinals. He’s the 29th ranked player of his class.
16. Brandon Inniss
Brandon Inniss is a 6’0’’, 190-pound wide receiver who plays high school ball at American Heritage High School in Plantation, Florida. He is graded an 86 by ESPN, who also have him listed as the 25th ranked player in the 2023 class. The four-star recruit is committed to playing for the Ohio State University Buckeyes.
15. Keon Keeley
Keon Keeley is a 6’5’’, 220-pound defensive end who plays high school ball at Berkeley Prep in Tampa, Florida – he’s the 23rd ranked player in his class. ESPN is grading the four-star recruit an 87 and, as of June 28, 2021, Keeley has committed to playing for the University of Notre Dame Fighting Irish.
14. Jaden Rashada
Jaden Rashada is a 6’4’’, 185-pound dual-threat quarterback who currently plays for Pittsburgh High School in Pittsburgh, Connecticut – he’s the 22nd ranked player in his class. ESPN has the four-star recruit graded at an 87. As of June 26, 2022, Rashada has committed to the University of Miami Hurricanes.
13. A.J. Harris
A.J. Harris is a 6’2’’, 180-pound cornerback who currently plays at Central High School in Phenix City, Alabama – he’s the No. 20 ranked player in the nation. ESPN is grading him an 87 heading into his senior year. The four-star recruit has committed to the University of Georgia Bulldogs.
12. Makai Lemon
Makai Lemon is a 5’11’’, 180-pound wide receiver who plays for Los Alamitos High School in Los Alamitos, California – he’s the 19th ranked player in the nation. ESPN graded him an 87 ahead of this season and the four-star recruit is committed to the University of Southern California (USC) Trojans.
11. Jahlil Hurley
Jahlil Hurley is a 6’2’’, 170-pound cornerback who currently plays high school football at Florence High School in Florence, Alabama – he’s the No. 18 ranked player in the nation. ESPN is grading the four-star recruit an 87 and, as of February 22, 2022, he’s committed to the University of Alabama Crimson Tide.
10. DeAndre Moore Jr.
DeAndre Moore Jr. is a 5’11’’, 190-pound wide receiver from St. John Bosco High School in Bellflower, California – he’s the 17th ranked player in the nation. ESPN has him graded at an 87. The four-star recruit is committed to the University of Louisville Cardinals, as of May 31, 2022.
9. Tony Mitchell
Tony Mitchell is a 6’2’’, 190-pound cornerback who currently plays for Thompson High School in Alabaster, Alabama – he’s the No. 16 ranked player in the nation. The four-star recruit is being graded an 87 ahead of his senior season and, as of June 26, 2022, Mitchell is committed to playing for the University of Alabama Crimson Tide.
8. Nicholaus Iamaleava
Nicholaus Iamaleava is a 6’6’’, 195-pound pocket passer quarterback from Long Beach Polytechnic High School in Long Beach, California – he’s the 13th ranked player in the nation. ESPN is grading the four-star recruit an 89 and he’s committed to playing for the University of Tennessee Volunteers, as of March 21, 2022.
7. Zachariah Branch
Zachariah Branch is a 5’10’’ wide receiver who plays high school football at Bishop Gorman High School in Las Vegas, NV – he’s the 12th ranked player in the nation. ESPN has the four-star recruit graded at an 89. Branch is currently committed to playing for the University of Southern California (USC) Trojans.
6. Peter Woods
Peter Woods is a 6’3’’, 275-pound defensive tackle who plays for Thompson Public School in Thompson, Alabama – he’s the No. 9 ranked player in the nation. According to ESPN, the five-star recruit is graded at a 90 ahead of his senior year. As of July 8, 2022, Woods is committed to playing for the Clemson University Tigers.
5. Dante Moore
Dante Moore is a 6’3’’, 200-pound pocket passer quarterback who plays for Martin Luther King High School in Detroit, Michigan – he’s the eighth ranked player in the nation. The five-star recruit is graded a 90 by ESPN ahead of the 2022 senior season and he’s committed to play for the University of Oregon Ducks, as of July 8, 2022.
4. Kadyn Proctor
Kadyn Proctor is a 6’6’’, 315-pound offensive tackle who plays for Southeast Polk High School in Runnells, Iowa – he’s the sixth ranked player in the nation. ESPN is grading the five-star recruit a 90 ahead of his final year in high school. As of June 30, 2022, he is committed to staying in his hometown and playing for the University of Iowa Hawkeyes.
3. Francis Mauigoa
Francis Mauigoa is a 6’6’’, 325-pound offensive tackle who currently plays for IMG Academy in Bradenton, Florida – he’s the fifth ranked player in the nation. The five-star recruit is receiving a 90 grade ahead of his senior year at IMG. As of July 4, 2022, he is committed to playing for the University of Miami Hurricanes.
2. Malachi Nelson
Malachi Nelson is a 6’3’’, 185-pound pocket passer quarterback who plays for Los Alamitos High School in Los Alamitos, California – the same high school as wide receiver Makai Lemon from above. Nelson is the second ranked player in the nation, received a 91 grade by ESPN, and the five-star recruit is committed to the University of Southern California (USC) Trojans.
1. Arch Manning
Arch Manning, the nephew of Eli Manning and Peyton Manning, is a 6’3’’, 204-pound pocket passer quarterback who plays for Isidore Newman High School in New Orleans, Louisiana. ESPN has him graded at a 93 – the five-star recruit committed to playing for the University of Texas Longhorns on June 23, 2022.
2023 D1 NCAAF Commitments to Watch Out For
According to ESPN, 43 of the top 100 recruits in the 2023 class have yet to commit to a college or university. Of the 57 that have, 30 of them are listed above. Other notables to commit include Riley Williams, Vic Burley, Dylan Lonergan, Justyn Rhett, Luke Hasz, and Harris Sewell.
Of the 43 players that have yet to commit, 21 of them are ranked in the top 40 – including Cormani McClain (No. 3), Anthony Hill (No. 4), Jaquavious Russaw (No. 7), James Smith (No. 10), Richard Young (No. 11), Caleb Downs (No. 14), and David Hicks (No. 15).
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Other notable 2023 D1 NCAAF commitments to keep an eye out for are Joenel Aguero (No. 21), Nyckoles Harbor (No. 24), Troy Bowles (No. 26), Hykeem Williams (No. 27), Samuel M’Pemba (No. 28), Shelton Sampson Jr. (No. 30), and Derrick LeBlanc (No. 31).
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