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BCS Rankings: Week 7 Projections

The first first set of BCS standings will be unveiled at 8:15 pm ET on ESPN. Eight BCS-conference unbeatens (and Boise State) remain, but Alabama is projected to top the initial list.

Wide receiver Brandon Gibson (11) of the Alabama Crimson Tide catches a pass for a touchdown against the Ole Miss Rebels in the third quarter on October 15, 2011 at Vaught-Hemingway Stadium in Oxford, Mississippi. (Photo by Butch Dill/Getty Images)
Wide receiver Brandon Gibson (11) of the Alabama Crimson Tide catches a pass for a touchdown against the Ole Miss Rebels in the third quarter on October 15, 2011 at Vaught-Hemingway Stadium in Oxford, Mississippi. (Photo by Butch Dill/Getty Images)
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Love them or hate them, the Bowl Championship Series standings return to the spotlight Sunday night with the BCS Countdown Show (ESPN, 8:15 p.m. ET). The first set of official standings will be released, and as always, there figures to be plenty of debate about who belongs at the top.

Eight BCS-conference teams and recurrent BCS-buster Boise State all completed Week 7 with perfect records. Despite the clutter at the top, there seems to be a consensus that the cream of the crop can be whittled down to Alabama, LSU and Oklahoma -- for now, anyway.

BCS Guru, a website that uses the college football polls to mimic the BCS formula, projects Alabama to land on top of the initial rankings, with LSU edging out Oklahoma for the coveted No. 2 spot. The Crimson Tide and Tigers head up a group of four Southeastern Conference teams in BCS Guru's top 10, no surprise given the league's recent run of national dominance. By contrast, not a single team in the projection's top 15 hails from the northeast region of the country, with only Penn State ranking in the top 30 of last week's projections.

Rutgers checked in at No. 32 in last week's projections and could break the top 30 after the Scarlet Knights squeaked past Navy on Saturday. Syracuse, which did not play this weekend, did not crack BCS Guru's 42-team rankings.

Despite not playing this weekend, West Virginia is expected to lead the way among Big East teams. The Mountaineers were projected 19th in last week's rankings and are the only team from the conference ranked in either the AP or USA Today Coaches' poll. South Florida was projected No. 31 in last week's rankings, but lost to Connecticut on Saturday, while Cincinnati could climb from No. 39 with its win over Louisville.

Check back later tonight for the first batch of BCS standings. Visit On the Banks for coverage of Rutgers football and Troy Nunes is an Absolute Magician for Syracuse news and commentary.