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Conference power rankings

1. SEC: One team from the SEC will play for the national championship (either Florida or Alabama). Also, the SEC is a lock to get two teams into BCS bowls (Florida and Alabama). Both teams just need to avoid upsets (Florida ends with Florida State and Alabama ends with Auburn).

2. Pac-10: The Pac-10 has six bowl eligible teams, the most of any conference at this point. It's possible the Pac-10 will get two teams in BCS bowls, perhaps Oregon and USC. Arizona, which still has a legitimate shot to win the conference, Stanford and Oregon State will be tough in whichever bowls they play in.

3. Big East: The Big East has four teams in the BCS rankings, including a still unbeaten Cincinnati team, which is No. 5. Pittsburgh, ranked in the top 10 of the human polls and 12th in the BCS, is a dangerous team.

4. Big Ten: The Big Ten is out of the national championship race. Right now, Ohio State controls its destiny to yet another Big Ten title. Iowa's loss really hurt the conference. Not only did that knock the Big Ten completely out of the national title race, but it's possible only the conference champion will get a BCS invite.

5. ACC: The conference is looking fairly mediocre at this point. Georgia Tech is the best team in the ACC, but I don't think the Yellow Jackets will fair well in a BCS bowl. Georgia Tech's defense just isn't very good. Plus, there's always the possibility Clemson will upset the Yellow Jackets in the conference title game.

6. Big 12: It's Texas and Oklahoma State right now. The rest of the conference isn't great this season. But the Longhorns are in good position to play for the national title.

7. Mountain West: TCU isn't going away. One tough game remains Saturday against Utah. And what if .... Alabama lost to Auburn and then beat Florida in the SEC title game. Could TCU play Texas for the national title? Possible.

8. WAC: Boise State still looks good for a BCS bowl invite, thanks to some of the other contenders (Iowa, Penn State, etc.) losing on Saturday. But the Broncos cannot afford a loss and make the BCS bowl officials choose between a 12-1 Boise State team and a 10-2 Big Ten team.

9. Mid-American: The Mid-American has four bowl-eligible teams -- Central Michigan, Temple, Ohio and Northern Illinois. Good showing thus far for the MAC.

10. Conference USA: Houston hung on against Tulsa and is No. 15 in the BCS standings. Plus, Case Keenum is getting some Heisman support, which is good for the conference. Conference USA, however, currently has just one bowl eligible team -- Houston.

11. Sun Belt: Middle Tennessee State joins Troy as a bowl eligible team.

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