One Big East team in early Top 25

ESPN's "College Football Live" has revealed its Top 25 poll for 2011. The poll was put together after a vote of ESPN experts (including yours truly). Here's how it shakes down, with Big East teams (OK, team) in bold and 2011 Big East opponents in italics.

1. Oklahoma

2. Alabama

3. Oregon

4. LSU

5. Boise State

6. Florida State

7. Stanford

8. South Carolina

9. Oklahoma State

10. Ohio State

11. Texas A&M

12. Arkansas

13. Nebraska

14. Wisconsin

15. TCU

16. Michigan State

17. Notre Dame

18. Florida

19. Virginia Tech

20. Texas

21. Mississippi State

22. Auburn

23. Missouri

24. West Virginia

25. Arizona State

It seems to be pretty much a consensus in these early polls that West Virginia is the only Big East team to make it in, usually near the bottom. The Mountaineers are getting some love based on Dana Holgorsen's offense taking them to the next level, because the strength of last year's team -- defense -- was hit hard by graduation/departures.

As I posted earlier this month, I had South Florida in my Top 25, at No. 25. But I didn't expect others to vote the same way. USF will have to prove it on the field, and will get a chance to do so right away against the No. 17 team in this poll. The Bulls will have a shot at pulling off the upset, especially Michael Floyd is still suspended for the Irish in the opener.

Only two teams in this Top 25 are on Big East nonconference schedules this year, which is disappointing. LSU, of course, plays at West Virginia. Notre Dame will play Pitt in addition to USF.

Can TCU go ahead and join now?