The biggest weakness for every Way-Too-Early Top 25 team

AP Photo/David J. Phillip

Every team in Mark Schlabach's 2017 Way-Too-Early Top 25 is loaded with talent. But every team has its flaws. Here is the biggest weakness of every top-25 team.

1. Alabama

Jalen Hurts won SEC Offensive Player of the Year as a true freshman. And, yes, early enrollee Tua Tagovailoa looks like a future stud. But until we see Alabama's passing game develop, it's going to be a concern. For as good as Hurts was last season, he struggled down the stretch, completing less than 50 percent of his passes with only two touchdowns in the final three games against Florida, Washington and Clemson. -- Alex Scarborough

2. Florida State

Underappreciated late but still underwhelming best describes Florida State's offensive line a season ago. If the unit stays healthy and can form some continuity, it will be better in the fall. There are no assurances that the group will significantly improve, however, and FSU no longer has Roderick Johnson anchoring the line at left tackle. -- Jared Shanker

3. USC

If there's any concern about quarterback Sam Darnold moving forward, it lies in his protectors on the edge. Zach Banner and Chad Wheeler have both exhausted their eligibility, so the Trojans must replace both big tackles, who were instrumental in giving Darnold clean pockets last season. Chuma Edoga is a proven replacement here -- he has started a couple games already -- but that second tackle spot is a hole until USC firmly locks it down. -- David Lombardi

4. Ohio State

Based on the recruiting rankings, there is no shortage of talent at wideout for the Buckeyes. But Ohio State seemed to have trouble tapping into that potential last season, and it clearly hampered the passing attack as timing, dropped passes and the lack of a true deep threat slowed the offense late in the season. If the targets take a step forward for Ohio State and new offensive coordinator Kevin Wilson, look out. -- Austin Ward

5. Penn State

The reigning Big Ten champions left no doubt about the explosiveness of their offense in the postseason, but the Rose Bowl loss by the Nittany Lions offered a clear reminder that improvement is needed defensively. Specifically, Penn State must shore up a unit that finished No. 11 in the Big Ten in passing yards allowed, including 453 given up against the Trojans in the 52-49 defeat that closed out the season. -- Ward

6. Clemson

The ground game. Even at its peak last season, Clemson's rushing attack seemed a bit out of step. Now, the Tigers are facing life without Deshaun Watson's legs or Wayne Gallman's power, and there are real questions as to how successful this group can be running the football. Dabo Swinney has compared sophomore Tavien Feaster to former star C.J. Spiller, and incoming freshman Travis Etienne could be a nice power component to the backfield, but as it stands, there isn't much in the way of experience, and there are no sure things on an offense in transition. -- David M. Hale

7. Washington

The Huskies had one of the nation's best secondaries in 2016, but both starting cornerbacks and all-conference safety Budda Baker are gone. While Taylor Rapp is a promising, young talent at safety, replacing Sidney Jones and Kevin King on the outside won't be easy. Freshman Elijah Molden could have an opportunity to contribute immediately upon arrival in Seattle, and Washington hopes for its depth to emerge into frontline positions during spring ball. -- David Lombardi

8. Oklahoma

Oklahoma's inexperience around Mayfield offensively is concerning. Not only do the Sooners need to find a new primary ball carrier, but they also need a new go-to receiver for Mayfield -- to replace outgoing Heisman finalist Dede Westbrook. -- Jake Trotter

9. LSU

That schedule isn't a nice one for Ed Orgeron. In what will be his first full season as the Tigers' head coach, he'll start with BYU in Houston before traveling to Mississippi State a couple weeks later. From Oct. 7 to Nov. 4, the Tigers will be on the road three times for trips to Florida, Ole Miss and Alabama. A home game with Auburn is squeezed in there, and the month of November concludes with Arkansas (home), Tennessee (road) and Texas A&M. -- Edward Aschoff

10. Oklahoma State

Oklahoma State will need to improve a pass defense that ranked 98th nationally. With All-Big 12 safety Jordan Sterns gone, that won't be easy, especially with the lack of proven options at cornerback. -- Trotter

11. Auburn

There are some intriguing pieces in place -- namely Derrick Brown, Dontavius Russell and Byron Cowart -- but the defensive line/pass rush is a question mark for an Auburn defense that loses longtime playmakers Carl Lawson and Montravius Adams. -- Scarborough

12. Wisconsin

The Badgers are never going to be confused for a Big 12 team, but some better efficiency is needed at QB. Alex Hornibook showed promise as a redshirt freshman, with some good performances against Michigan State and Ohio State. But he struggled down the stretch, and there is no experience behind him. He needs to take another step forward in 2017. -- Brian Bennett

13. Georgia

The offensive line could be here, but when you look at the Dawgs' SEC East title chances and maybe a playoff run, that schedule can't be ignored. In SEC play, Georgia faces Tennessee, Vanderbilt (both losses in 2016) and Auburn on the road. The annual game against Florida is in Jacksonville, and what should be a pretty good Mississippi State team heads to Athens. Oh, and Georgia goes to Notre Dame in Week 2. -- Aschoff

14. Michigan

Experience, plain and simple. The Wolverines sent 14 players to the NFL combine and have only five returning starters. Only one is back on defense. Luckily, there's plenty of young talent and a great coaching staff, and Ohio State made the playoff last year with a similar lack of seasoning. But the lack of proven veterans will be a concern until proven otherwise. -- Bennett

15. Stanford

Solomon Thomas' departure dealt a major blow to the Cardinal's defensive line, which now sees Harrison Phillips as the only truly experienced and productive returner. Stanford needs more from Dylan Jackson (just one tackle for loss in 2016) moving forward. Beyond that, at least two more names must emerge from a plethora of young players. -- Lombardi

16. Miami

Miami loses three starters in its secondary, including its best player, Corn Elder. But there certainly is potential with this group. FCS All-American Dee Delaney plans to transfer to Miami. Plus, promising safety Jaquan Johnson returns, along with cornerbacks Malek Young and Sheldrick Redwine. Add in ESPN 300 talents Amari Carter, Jhavonte Dean and Trajan Bandy, and there's reason for optimism. -- Andrea Adelson

17. Kansas State

The passing game as a primary weapon. Jesse Ertz trailed only Baker Mayfield and Patrick Mahomes in QBR among Big 12 quarterbacks last season. But the aerial attack works well for the Wildcats only when they're running the ball well -- and not so well when foes force K-State to throw. -- Mitch Sherman

18. Louisville

The offensive line. Turn on the film of the Houston game. Or Kentucky. Or LSU. Lamar Jackson was either running for his life or buried under a pile of defenders. It was as ugly a performance by an offensive line as the ACC has seen in a while, and even Jackson's incredible talent couldn't hide it all season. Expect a major overhaul in 2017, but unless the big changes come with big improvement, Jackson is going to have to outrun his share of defenders again this season. -- Hale

19. Colorado

The Buffs' entire defense -- from eight graduated starters to departed coordinator Jim Leavitt -- faces a massive rebuilding effort. The entire starting line and all but one defensive back are gone, so this hole is particularly wide. Mike MacIntyre hopes junior college transfers can immediately plug holes in spring: Linemen Javier Edwards and Chris Mulumba are both on campus, as is defensive back Dante Wigley. -- Lombardi

20. South Florida

There is no question that the Bulls have to step it up across the board on defense, but their biggest weakness a year ago was pass defense. USF ranked No. 122 in the nation and allowed 12.3 yards per completion. Two of the top four players the team signed are cornerbacks, so help should be on the way. -- Adelson

21. Washington State

The Cougars desperately need a receiver to pick up the slack left behind by Gabe Marks and River Cracraft on the front end. Washington State's struggles were already apparent late last season after Cracraft went down with a knee injury, as the passing game was severely hamstrung to close the season. Now Marks, who caught 89 passes last season, is also gone, and that leaves a real void. Tavares Martin Jr. is a candidate for more looks, as is tall target Isaiah Johnson-Mack. -- Lombardi

22. West Virginia

Replacing eight starters on defense for a second-straight year is certainly going to be challenging, though getting safety Dravon Askew-Henry back helps. The Mountaineers need to reload again on defense -- not rebuild. On offense, Shelton Gibson's decision to go pro means West Virginia has one of the Big 12's most unproven receiving corps. -- Max Olson

23. Texas

New coach Tom Herman would point to the culture inside Texas' program after three straight losing seasons as a big flaw. His staff will spend a ton of their time working on that this offseason. Texas is still inexperienced at QB and thin at tight end, and even with nearly everybody back, the secondary is a concern. -- Olson

24. Boise State

The Broncos allowed 4.3 yards per rush last season, their worst mark since the program established national prominence under Chris Petersen. To complicate matters, that defensive line loses senior starters Sam McCaskill and Elliot Hoyte. Linebackers Darren Lee and Ben Weaver are also gone, so Boise State's entire front seven is a question mark after a disappointing season. It's time to see if younger talent, anchored by nose tackle David Moa, will help this defense rediscover form. -- Lombardi

25. Virginia Tech

The passing game loses its top three playmakers from a season ago, so questions abound as to how the Hokies will fill out the offense. Don't expect an early end to the competition among the quarterbacks, who no longer have Isaiah Ford or Bucky Hodges to help. -- Shanker