Jon Wilner posted his Ridiculously Early Top 25 for the 2012 football season today and Andrew Luck-less Stanford is nowhere to be found. As if that wasn't bad enough, Wilner ranks Cal No. 23.
23. Cal: Admittedly, I haven’t scrutinized the projected Pac-12 depth charts, but … If Zach Maynard continues to develop and the young defensive linemen live up to their billing, the Bears could be the third-best team in the Pac-12. (Utah, Stanford and Washington may have something to say about that.)
I might be a little more annoyed with Wilner's rankings if I could take them seriously. (It's hard to take any preseason top 25 that comes out the day after the season ends seriously, but Auburn at No. 14? Ha.)
ESPN's Mark Schlabach also posted his Way-Too-Early Top 25 today. He sandwiches Stanford between Oklahoma State and Virginia Tech at No. 17, which seems reasonable, especially considering he evidently wrote the Cardinal's blurb before Chase Thomas announced he was returning.
Finally, here is Ted Miller's early take on the 2012 Pac-12 race. He's not as high on the Bears in 2012 as Wilner, but he does say there's "plenty of intriguing talent on the roster." Miller ranks Stanford fourth behind USC, Oregon, and Utah.