Who will bust the BCS, Fresno State or Northern Illinois?
So which non-AQ team will be the last to bust the BCS before the College Football Playoffs start in 2014?
Northern Illinois comes off its biggest win of the season, taking care of Ball State at home by a final of 48-27 (although it was much closer than that score indicates). The Huskies currently sit at No. 15 in the BCS Standings with a .3505 average ranking, are 10-0 and are expected to win the MAC.
Jordan Lynch is one of the most decorated quarterbacks in the country and is well-known for his ability to run the ball, making some noise as a Heisman contender both last and this year.
Despite the No. 123 strength of schedule, NIU has solid wins at Iowa and Ball State, and if all goes as planned, it will have beaten Toledo on the road and probably Buffalo on a neutral field.
But unfortunately for the Huskies, none of that will be enough if Fresno State keeps winning.
For the most part, the Mountain West is a bit more competitive than the MAC. Fresno State sits at 9-0 with wins over Rutgers, Boise State, and San Diego State, and is one spot ahead of the Huskies (No. 14 in the BCS) with a considerably higher average ranking (.4317).
Like Northern Illinois, Fresno State has an elite quarterback. Derek Carr has a rocket-launcher for an arm, throwing the ball over 50 times a game and leads the nation with 32 touchdown passes. He has also received some recognition for the Heisman Trophy.
The Bulldogs' strength of schedule isn't much better (No. 110), but a road test against San Jose State and a likely MWC title game with Boise State still loom, which are slightly stronger than NIU's final games.
And while neither are impressive by any means, Northern Illinois' wins have come against opponents with a combined 38.4 winning percentage, including a 9-1 FCS Eastern Illinois squad. Fresno State's are at 40.5.
Finally, Northern Illinois got its chance last season. It snuck into the Orange Bowl and got beat down by Florida State in every phase of the game. I'm not saying this should be the reason it doesn't get another shot, but voters will keep that in the back of their head when picking between the two.
Many also believe that Central Florida has to battle for a spot in the BCS as a non-AQ, which is a common misconception. Believe it or not, but the American Athletic Conference is indeed an Automatic Qualifier and the winner earns a bid.
So to sum things up: Fresno State is too far ahead in the BCS' average rankings as it is and would have to lose in order for the Huskies to make back-to-back appearances. Judging by the Dawgs' resume, I don't think that's going to happen.
But hey, it's November, and football in November does tend to get a little weird.
Follow @Tyler_Waddell on Twitter