BCS Rankings: The Contenders and Pretenders of the BCS Top 25

William PenfieldCorrespondent IINovember 27, 2011

BCS Rankings: The Contenders and Pretenders of the BCS Top 25

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    With teams playing different level of competition in their schedules there are always contenders and pretenders in the BCS picture.

    When you have teams like Houston that don't play a ranked team all season, yet go undefeated, they are bound to be overrated in the BCS rankings.

    Who are the contenders and pretenders of the current BCS rankings?

Contender: LSU Tigers

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    LSU is the best team in college football.

    They are the only undefeated team left out of a BCS conference and are a virtual lock to head to New Orleans to play in the BCS National Championship.

    Arkansas had a chance to seize the SEC West and LSU showed why they were the best team by dismantling the Razorbacks after falling behind 14-0 early.

    No one has beaten the Tigers yet and it wont be a surprise to anyone if they finish the season unscathed. 

Contender: Alabama Crimson Tide

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    When your only loss is to the nation's undisputed No. 1 overall team, you are certainly a contender. 

    The Crimson Tide, like the Tigers, are a virtual lock to head to New Orleans for the BCS National Championship for a rematch of the "Game of the Century."

    It may not be the most desirable championship game but both these teams have earned the right to play in it despite the Crimson Tide not even playing for their conference title.

    Alabama and LSU are the country's two best teams. 

Contender: Virginia Tech Hokies

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    The Virginia Tech Hokies have quietly put together one of the better seasons in college football this year.

    At 11-1, the Hokies will face off against Clemson for the ACC Championship for the right to head to the Orange Bowl.

    With the Tigers sliding recently, the Hokies have a great shot to win the game in large part to their suffocating defense and outstanding running game. 

Contender: Oklahoma State Cowboys

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    Despite their disappointing loss to Iowa State, the Cowboys are still on track to play in a BCS bowl if they can knock off Oklahoma in Bedlam.

    With all the injuries to the Sooners it seems as though that is a great possibility.

    The Cowboys have one of the best offenses in the league and can put points up on anyone. It would be interesting to see their offense go up against one of the top SEC defenses but unfortunately that is not going to happen. 

Pretender: Stanford Cardinal

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    Stanford had a chance to play for a BCS National Championship this season if it could've just gotten past Oregon.

    But once again, the Cardinal proved why they are not elite as they got blown out by the Ducks.

    Andrew Luck and company will still get a bid to a BCS bowl, but the Cardinal are pretenders for the time being as they don't have that signature win yet this season.

Pretender: Houston Cougars

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    Yes, the Houston Cougars are one of two undefeated teams in college football, but the strength of schedule disparity is far too great to give them too much credit.

    They have not played a ranked team all year and won't until they play in a bowl game.

    The Cougars can prove us all wrong by winning a BCS bowl but the odds of that happening are not likely. 

Pretender: Boise State Broncos

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    After the loss to TCU, the Broncos are not a lock to get into a BCS bowl, as they shouldn't be with their weak strength of schedule.

    Despite playing Georgia, the Broncos have not played any other team from a BCS conference and don't deserve a bid.

    One non automatic qualifying team in the BCS is enough and that will likely be Houston, also a pretender. 

Pretender: Oklahoma Sooners

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    At one point in the season the Oklahoma Sooners were the top ranked team in the country—my how things have changed since.

    The Sooners have gone on to lose two games to lesser opponents and lose their top wide receiver in Ryan Broyles.

    With the inconsistency and injuries this team has, they are a pretender among the BCS contenders and will likley lose to Oklahoma State to be knocked out of contention.