Boise State best bet of non-BCS lot to crash party

Say this for the Texas Christian football team: It won’t have to sweat out any afternoon drama come a Sunday afternoon in December.

Unless its players are late with holiday shopping.

It’s not Sept. 5, and the Horned Frogs already have zero chance of contending for a national championship, of hoping to bust the ultimate of college parties.

The same goes for Utah State, but who knew until Saturday the Aggies were even a potential Bowl Championship Series buster?

This is how things go with our least favorite cartel. Teams that were thought good enough to remain in the title hunt from now until Thanksgiving and beyond can be out in the blink of an opening loss.

It’s as big a truth as how Top 25 rankings released in August help determine which teams have a chance at winning it all in January.

Don’t kid yourself. They set the stage of opinions for an entire season of more B(C)S.

The inequitable system that is college football’s postseason began in 1998, and no team from a non-BCS conference has played for the championship.

It takes perfection to have a chance, and even then teams don’t. I’m not sure this year will be any different, but I hope like anything a team or two again test the theory.

My remote control received a serious workout Saturday as I flipped between games of some non-BCS hopefuls. Eleven hours later, this is how things appeared for a few that might bust their way through this season.

Or get bamboozled trying.

■ The best chance: Boise State.

Nothing has changed. The Broncos beat Georgia 35-21, and if this is the sort of defense Mountain West opponents can expect to see from Boise State all season, a handful might not score.

Favor: Can we get one national analyst to watch a Boise State game and not wonder aloud how the Broncos would do if they played in a major conference? No one knows because no one can prove an opinion either way.

This, I know: Boise State physically manhandled a Southeastern Conference team in Atlanta, and marriage doesn’t seem to have effected the way Kellen Moore can drive an offense up and down the field.

Sure. We’ll see in 10 years if he is allowed such freedom.

■ The ultimate sleeper: Houston.

The Cougars are good enough to go undefeated and own a schedule that suggests they might. They beat UCLA 38-34, and their next-toughest test could be at Tulsa to end the regular season.

Houston doesn’t have the defense to win a national title should it advance that far, but its offense and quarterback — Case Keenum — are good enough to make the BCS suits nervous as the season moves on and Houston begins to climb the polls.

Houston hasn’t been this explosive in anything since Phi Slama Jama roamed campus, and its schedule is easier than Boise State’s. It also handed Rick Neuheisel a loss in the first game of a season in which the UCLA coach is said to be toasting on a hot seat.

Which is one more reason to be a Houston fan.

■ The pretender: Brigham Young.

Independently speaking, the Cougars looked a tad more than average in beating Mississippi, 14-13. It was a road win, and the defense was terrific, but 14 points won’t win at Texas next week or against Utah the following one. The present independent and future Big 12 Cougars have more the look of seven wins than any sort of BCS buster.

It could be worse. Brigham Young could be TCU, which allowed 50 big ones at Baylor on Friday night.

The Horned Frogs don’t deserve to be in any ranked discussion today, but tell me if Oklahoma or Louisiana State or Stanford had been upset on Saturday and then run the table, any would have been completely out of the championship picture.

TCU can run it and has zero opportunity to climb in.

Look at scores from Saturday. Look at how close Utah State came to beating Auburn on the road. Notice how the margin between non-BCS teams and those from major leagues is dwindling.

The formation of super conferences might deliver a long-awaited playoff system, but it also might leave some good programs on the outside of one grand party. Which means nothing will have changed.

So as college football awaits word from programs such as Texas and Oklahoma, as many wonder if a Pac-16 is closer than not to being finalized, as the rumors of the Big 12 imploding grow louder, another season has begun with thoughts of a non-BCS team being the one to stand last.

The race to perfection is under way for a select few.

Let’s hope someone does it.

Las Vegas Review-Journal sports columnist Ed Graney can be reached at egraney@reviewjournal.com or 702-383-4618. He can be heard from 3 to 5 p.m. Monday and Thursday on “Monsters of the Midday,” Fox Sports Radio 920 AM. Follow him on Twitter: @edgraney.

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