4. Recruiting is still king. (See Alabama, Ohio State and Florida State)
5. Coaching is pretty damn important, too. Two prime examples: Houston and Michigan. The Cougars have talent, sure, but probably not enough to be expected to control back to back games against Florida State and Oklahoma. Some of the Wolverines' best talent is probably still waiting in the wings, but Harbaugh has gotten more out of a bunch of veterans than Brady Hoke did. At the other end of the spectrum are LSU and to a lesser extent Kentucky. Meanwhile, nobody combines recruiting and development better than Nick Saban and Urban Meyer.
6. Coaching is pretty damn important II: Texas coach Charlie Strong bit the bullet and brought in an offensive coordinator to run the type of offense most of the high schools in talent-rich Texas run, and it paid immediate dividends as the Longhorns stunned Notre Dame 50-47 in double overtime Sunday night. It was quite a turnaround from a year ago when the Fighting Irish embarrassed Strong's team 38-3 in South Bend.
7. And then there were three? I thought going into the season, Alabama, Clemson, LSU and Florida State provided a strong nucleus of contenders with talent and pedigree. Cross the Tigers off the list and get ready for chaos as a whole bunch of teams figure to take their turn trying to break into the top four between now and December, especially since FSU and Clemson are guaranteed at least one loss. Of course, LSU will get a shot at 'Bama, too…