1. FC Kaiserslautern finished 7th – typical for the unpredictable club. The squad was not much of an indication, for Kaiserslautern was equally capable of finishing very high or very low. Yet, it was not a bad team:
MSV Duisburg finished 6th – the club was still enjoying their strong years. Not candidates for top places, but regularly finishing in the upper half of the table. Solid performance, based on experience. Relatively modest squad, depending on the solid left full back Dietz, soon to captain the national team, aging, but reliable Austrian Kurt Jara, moving to midfield by now, and the good striker Worm, who was tried in the national time for awhile. Modest team really, perhaps overperforming a bit, but deserving its place. No surprise.
The contenders for third place were no surprise either – Fortuna (Dusseldorf) had no great squad, but carefully made on, which performed steadily for few years already and still rising. The team was quietly adding good players – they already had Zewe, Seel, the young talent Allofs, got the Austrian national team midfielder Hickersberger. There were hopes that may be Fortuna was to become another great German club, but so far it was not the case. To a point, the team did not reach its peak, still rising, not ready to really run for the title. They were 1 point short of third place.
Hertha got the bronze. Shaky in the past, the West Berliners somewhat stabilized their performance and enjoyed strong few years. They appeared still at building stage, nobody really considered them potential greats, but if they continued on the same road for a few more years – may be. Not presently, though. 1977-78 looked like true beginning of serious project: the coach Klotzer came from Hamburger SV; Nigbur was between the goalposts, Beer in attack was still in the national team, solid third-stringers (on nation-wide level) Granitza, Sidka, Kliemann, Gersdorff, the reliable Danish player Rasmussen. A new Danish striker came in the summer of 1977 – Jorgen Kristensen from Feyenoord (Rotterdam). Hertha delivered one more solid season and clinched 3rd place with 40 points.
The big surprise came from VfB Stuttgart. They were promoted from second division in 1976-77. It looked like Stuttgart would be just happy to back in the Bundesliga, concerned with escaping relegation – they were insignificant for many years, eventually relegated. Instead of fighting for survival, Stuttgart stunned with very strong performance. They finished 5th with 17 wins, 5 ties, and 12 losses. Their defense was second best this year, allowing 40 goals – only Fortuna (Dusseldorf) did better, 36 goals. Stuttgart scored well, although not very high – 58 goals. Eight clubs, including miserable Bayern scored more. It was excellent season, especially for the long suffering club's fans.