Jimbo Fisher took two days off before preparing for 2014. That seemed like respectful pause for the Power Poll before looking head.
The first top 25 of 2014 contains the usual suspects -- six from the SEC -- but also the possibility of a repeat. With an NFL-caliber quarterback and the guts of the nation's No. 1 scoring defense, Jimbo's team seems like a good bet to do it again.
1. Florida State : We'll have to sift through the NFL defections but Jameis Winston is a good place to start. It's logical that he'll get even better in his second year as a starter. Jimbo says maybe "one or two" players will leave early for the draft. Repeat? Why not?
2. Auburn: Gus' bus remains all but full with all the key contributors back. The Tigers won't be able to sneak up on anyone in '14. The only major losses figure to be left tackle Greg Robinson and tailback Tre Mason.
3. Michigan State : Spartans surprised Stanford and the Big Ten in the second half with an offense that averaged 30 points down the stretch. If Mark Dantonio can keep defensive coordinator Pat Narduzzi, even better for the Spartans.
6. Stanford : Ty Gaffney is gone but there's still a Barry Sanders (Jr.) on the roster. David Shaw is in the process of building a perennial top 10 program. That's exactly where the Cardinal finish next season.
7. Alabama: Nick Saban does not suffer such "failings" as 11 wins. The last time Bama didn't win the national championship, it responded by winning two in a row. Must find a quarterback.
10. Missouri: James Franklin's shoulder injury allowed us to see the future in quarterback Maty Mauk. The Tigers might actually get better at the position. The defense loses SEC defensive player of the year Michael Sam.
11. USC: All kinds of upside here with a new coach (Steve Sarkisian) inheriting an experienced quarterback (Cody Kessler). In the final season of the sanctions, the Trojans are ready to win the Pac-12 South.
12. Baylor: The loss of Lache Seastrunk is huge, but the Bears won't slip much offensively. Bryce Petty should be a Heisman candidate. Do games at Texas, Oklahoma and Texas Tech mean the Horns, Sooners and Red Raiders will be looking for revenge?
13. Arizona State : QB Taylor Kelly returns, giving the Sun Devils a chance at another Pac-12 South title. Coach Todd Graham will have to rally his troops after blowout losses to Stanford (Pac-12 Championship)and Texas Tech (Holiday Bowl).
18. Texas A&M : The post-Manziel era begins in Aggieville. New quarterback, same trajectory for Kevin Sumlin. Up. In Year 3 of the SEC, A&M still hasn't reached its potential. The defense must improve dramatically.
20. South Carolina: Not so quietly, Steve Spurrier has positioned the Gamecocks' program in the best era of football ever at South Carolina. It will be hard to win 11 again.
21. Georgia: The Dawgs have to be better. You might have noticed that plenty of backups got playing time. The majority of the offensive line returns along with tailbacks Todd Gurley and Keith Marshall.
22. Clemson : Tigers are the first team from the state of South Carolina to win a BCS bowl game. But don't forget: They're also the first to give up 70 points in a BCS bowl.
25 (tie). Marshall: Any team with Rakeem Cato has a chance. The non-BCS Johnny Manziel threw for a career-high 39 touchdown passes in leading the Thundering Herd to a 10-win season for the first time in 11 years.