Preseason Home Review Index

ESPN College Football Preview


ESPN
ESPN Plaza
Bristol, CT 06010
Web site: www.espn.com/CollegeFootballPreview
Rating: 21

$7.99 [1], 136 pp.
Year reviewed: 2015

[1] Cost is $3.00 higher (shipping + handling) when ordered from the web site.

Overview: ESPN produced a online preview up to 2012 with Blue Ribbon, but I did not see anything from them the last two years. It seems they are re-entering the fray with a paper magazine. The layout is nice, but it's a bit short on substance and gives little attention to most non-AQ teams.

AQ teams get a full page of coverage. Some non-AQ teams (ones expected to be decent) also get a full page, but the rest get a half page or a third of a page. For example, among the AAC East teams: Temple gets a full page with the same format as any AQ team; Cincinnati and East Carolina get a half page each; and the remaining three teams share a single page. There's no predictive history, since the magazine is new for this year (and I assume it's not in partnership with Blue Ribbon, so 2012 and earlier years are not likely a guide to accuracy).

Per-team information: A full page for all AQ teams and a few non-AQ teams. Most of the text is divided among four sections ("how they beat you" and "how you beat them" for each offense and defense). There's a list of projected starters, schedle for the coming season, and a small table of details on the prior year's team.
For teams that only get a half-page, the discussions are shorter and there is no projected roster. For teams that get 1/3 of a page, the previous-season data is reduced (no list of returning statistical leaders) and the discussion is very short.

Per-conference information: AQ conferences get two pages, but much of that is taken up by a picture of a single player. Converage includes a (one-deep) all-conference team, ranking of all teams (including percentage chance to win the conference), and a list of must-see games. Non-AQ conferences get only a single page, but the primary difference is lack of a player picture.

National information: one-deep All-America list, top five position groups, though the groupings are somewhat nonstandard, e.g., the defense is divided into only two groups (front seven and defensive backs) while most publications that do unit rankings would have three (defensive line, linebackers, defensive backs).

Recap (previous year) information: Overall and conference record for each team, list of a few returning statistical leaders for most teams.

FCS information: None.


Preseason Home Review Index