You know the college football season is just around the corner when ESPN analyst Kirk Herbstreit is awarding his “Herbies,” an annual preseason list of awards where he picks the conference champions and predicts the national champion.
That is what happened on Wednesday and he went with the Clemson Tigers when it comes to the 2016 College Football Playoff championship.
The awards range from “The Hybrid,” which he awarded to Florida State sophomore safety Derwin James, and “The Ultimate Herbie,” which was awarded to Pittsburgh running back James Conner. He also picked some surprise bowl teams, including Vanderbilt, Rutgers and Colorado.
The big thing that everyone was looking for, however, was his picks for conference champions and the College Football Playoff. He picked the Clemson Tigers and Alabama Crimson Tide to make it back to the playoff while Ohio State gets back in after missing it last year and TCU gets in for the first time.
Here are all of Herbstreit’s champions and sleeper picks in each conference:
Clemson over North Carolina
Ohio State over Minnesota
Stanford over UCLA
Alabama over Tennessee
Western Michigan over Bowling Green
Sleeper: Central Michigan
Boise State over San Diego State
Sleeper: Air Force
Southern Miss over Marshall
Sleeper: Middle Tennessee
Houston over South Florida
Sleeper: UL Lafayette
He picked the Tigers to pull out the win in the playoff, winning their first national championship since 1982, just their second overall. It is going to be a fun football season and I am sure the Clemson fan base is hoping Kirk Herbstreit is right.