Preseason Home Review Index

USA Today - College Football

USA Today Sports
Web site:
Rating: 46
$7.99, 146 pp.
Year reviewed: 2013

Overview: This is the second year for USA Today's glossy magazine. Last year they also published a newsprint preview as they had in prior years. The magazine is heavy on feature articles and relatively light on detail -- the first 1/3 of the publication has a one-deep all-America list, a national top 25, and nothing else but feature articles. The magazine had a top-notch prediction accuracy rating last year, but that doesn't carry the weight of a multi-year track record. Top 25 teams get a full page each. Teams split a faction of a page per conference or division (for example, all ACC-Atlantic teams are covered on a single page).

Per-team information: A fraction of a page for non-top-25 teams, anywhere from 1/4 to 1/8 of a page. It works out to about 100 words per team, which is very thin coverage. No rosters or previous year's results; schedules are in a separate section. Coverage includes a few players named in various categories ("star watch," "top newcomer") and a couple of sentences about question marks and expectations. The commentary isn't terribly detailed and could have been written in February. Top 25 teams get expanded coverage, but it's mostly fluff (no projected roster, some statistical data e.g. 2012 individual rushing and passing leaders).

Per-conference information: two full pages per AQ conference, and one page per non-AQ conference. A predicted record is given for each team without commentary, a one-deep all-conference team is listed, a sentence or two on recruiting per team. (Non-AQ teams lack the all-conference team and recruiting information.)

National information: A national top 25 is given with a full page of coverage per team. There is a one-deep all-America list, with a few sentences commentary per player.

Recap (previous year) information: Very little. Overall record and conference record are listed in the conference preview section.

FCS information: Two pages.

Preseason Home Review Index