With the newest BCS rankings set to be released on Monday, I'm looking ahead to how Louisiana State will have a stranglehold on the top spot.
Ahead of their huge showdown with SEC West rival Alabama on Nov. 5, LSU will again be installed as the BCS's No. 1 ranked team when the new standings are made public and with good reason.
Not only was LSU ranked No. 1 in the initial BCS rankings, but they backed up the hype associated with being the nation's top team last Saturday. By handily beating divisional opponent Auburn, LSU again made its case to remain the nation's top team.
If the voters (or computers) were looking for a reason to remove the Bayou Bengals from the poll position in the BCS, they'll have to keep looking.
It shouldn't come as any surprise that LSU will again be atop the BCS standings come Monday, and here's why...
According to the newest AP Top 25 and USA Today polls, Louisiana State is clearly the nation's top college football team. LSU received 49 and 41 first-place votes to maintain the top rank in each respective poll.
As Bayou Bengals fans will tell you, LSU belongs up there.
LSU's closest competition in terms of first-place votes received in each poll was Alabama, as was to be expected. The Crimson Tide earned 10 votes for the top spot in the AP Top 25 poll, while receiving 18 first-place votes from the USA Today voters. The only other team to receive so much as a single first-place vote in either poll was Boise State.
(Must've been a Mountain West voter who doesn't have access to a single major sports news outlet.)
For what it's worth, even the ESPNU Fan Rankings have LSU in the poll position. If these rankings hold true in the next edition of the BCS standings, LSU is deserving of the No. 1 ranking by a landslide.
Even the computers should be able to figure this one out.
For last Saturday's game against Auburn, LSU was without several key players who were suspended for failing drug tests.
Even without defensive back Tharold Simon, starting running back Spencer Ware and star cornerback Tyrann Mathieu (who's also a dark horse Heisman Trophy candidate), LSU absolutely crushed an overwhelmed Auburn team 45-10.
Not many football teams can lose three key players and still put on an impressive showing like LSU did. It goes to show the caliber of player recruited by LSU when backups can hold down the fort.
This isn't to say that LSU is better off without three of their starting defensive lineup; obviously head coach Les Miles would rather have Simon, Ware and Mathieu on the field, but he has a comfort level with his second string players as well.
Having faith in your backups is an important characteristic of a team in contention for a national title.
It's also an important component of a BCS No. 1 team.
Even though LSU was heavily favored going into their matchup with Auburn last Saturday, there was no guarantee that they'd emerge from the game victorious.
In any rivalry game—especially in the SEC—there is an element of familiarity that isn't always accounted for by the point spread. Coupled with the fact that LSU entered the game as the newly crowned kings of the BCS, a divisional opponent could've made for a very difficult game for the home team.
Fortunately for Tigers fans, Les Miles had his team prepared. Even the pressure of being the number one ranked team in the country wasn't enough to phase LSU in their rout of Auburn.
LSU has been playing under pressure all season (read: tough road games), so the expectations implied by a top ranking didn't have a negative impact on them in Saturday's game.
I don't expect LSU to cave under pressure any time soon.
With the release of the newest voters' polls in advance of the BCS, it's been made clear that a loss at this point in the season might spell the end for a team's national title hopes.
Case in point: Oklahoma.
Ranked third overall in the first BCS standings, the Sooners are now 11th in the AP Top 25 and ninth in the USA Today poll. As the competition starts to fall far behind the top-ranked Tigers of LSU, the case for them retaining the top BCS spot becomes more clear.
With the fall of Oklahoma, teams like Oklahoma State, Stanford and Boise State will start to creep into the upper echelon of the BCS standings. Their respective resumes are not comparable to LSU's, meaning that they won't merit top spot consideration from the people or machines running the BCS.
LSU is far and away the clear choice for BCS No. 1 when the next rankings are released. They'll certainly have to prove it on the field against Alabama in two weeks, but for now LSU can safely call itself the best team in college football.