By Dan Shanoff
Page 2

Whether lounging at a tailgate party, standing in a rowdy bar, commiserating among co-workers or -- in "What's Hot, What's Not" tradition -- on a date, you don't want to get caught spouting last season's conventional wisdom about this season's biggest college football issues. While you fire up the grill or scour ESPN.com's complete college football preview, be sure to file away the talking points below:

WHAT'S HOT, WHAT'S NOT: COLLEGE FOOTBALL 2004
Category Hot Not Hot
Heisman would-be promotional angle
Jason White's
"Why stop now?"

Darren Sproles'
"Do you know me?"
Blood-boiling rivalry Miami vs. ACC Miami vs. Big East
Road-trip mecca LSU Ohio State
Coaching search Questioning recruiting
tactics
Questioning Xs and Os abilities
Hot QB in Big 12 Brad Smith (Missouri) Jason White (Oklahoma)
Uniforms Classic USC Oregon's "lightning yellow"
Player violation Bad lap-dance tipper Barroom brawling
Underground Heisman candidate
Walter Reyes (Syracuse)

Carnell Williams (Auburn)
BCS's biggest problem No strength-of-schedule factor "Too much computers" whining
Please give him more pub Dan Orlovsky (UConn) Matt Leinart (USC)
Poll to respect Online by fans Coaches
Coaching style to emulate Carroll's buddy-buddy Tressel's all-business
Cripes, he's still in college?
Cedric Benson (Texas)

Timmy Chang (Hawaii)
Bandwagon team
to root for
West Virginia California
Sideline fashion statement Polo shirt Rubber bands
Player hairstyle Let it grow! Let it 'row!
Mascot Virginia's "Wahoo" guy Georgia's Bulldog
Mr. Excitement
Antrel Rolle (Miami)

Anthony Davis (Wisconsin)
Retro jersey to be seen in Michael Irvin Ty Detmer
Biggest shoes to fill Micheal Spurlock
(Eli Manning)
David Underwood
(Chris Perry)
Multi-skilled Reggie Bush (USC) Punters who do other things
Special-teams gimmick Fake punts Onside kick coverage
"He's Due" coach
Mack Brown (Texas)

Mike Price (UTEP)
Conference to watch (besides ACC) Big XII Pac-10
Likely BCS tilt issue 3 unbeaten teams 3 one-loss teams
Prototype QB Has arm to go vertical Has legs to go horizontal
Game-day eye candy Softball team car-wash fundraiser Big Ten instant replays
Tailgate mixer Sports drink Caffeinated anything
Non-BCS Sleeper Utah TCU
Best place to get
school-specific info
Fan message boards Fan blogs


In the Page 2 "Hot/Not" tradition, some picks, though not the teams we like to win each major conference... simply outperform (or underperform!) expectations:

PAGE 2 CONFERENCE PICKS
Category Outperformer Underperformer
SEC Vandy Auburn
ACC Virginia The New Guys
Big 12 Missouri Colorado
Pac-10 Arizona St Cal
Big Ten Wisconsin Iowa
Big East UConn Pittsburgh
Non-BCS leagues Unbeatens Whiners
Off-the-radar champ Purdue Oklahoma

Dan Shanoff is a columnist for Page 2. His "Daily Quickie" commentary appears every weekday morning.




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