College Football Top 25: 10 non-ranked teams who could crack the late-season polls

7 of 11

Oct 3, 2014; Provo, UT, USA; Brigham Young Cougars quarterback Taysom Hill (4) drops back to pass during the first half against the Utah State Aggies at Lavell Edwards Stadium. Utah State won 35-20. Mandatory Credit: Russ Isabella-USA TODAY Sports

No. 5: BYU Cougars

2014 Finish 8-5

BYU got off to a hot start last season, and had it not been for the season-ending injury to quarterback Taysom Hill, the Cougars might have been fighting for a big time bowl bid in 2014.

The Cougars have a more difficult schedule this season, but the return of Hill, who is a legitimate Heisman contender, will make a huge difference. Another key player who had his season ended prematurely is running back Jamaal Williams, who is just 930 yards away from becoming BYU’s all-time leading rusher. These two weapons will ensure that BYU is in the thick of things.

Head coach Bronco Mendenall is heading into his 11th season in Provo, and he’ll also be taking over the defensive play-calling this season. Coming on the heels of a 55-48 double-overtime loss to Memphis in the Miami Beach Bowl, and a No. 73 national rank in scoring defense, something definitely needed to change.

Not only will BYU be a team who will likely be in the top 25 before all is said and done, but they could actually become a giant-slayer and find a way to push a Power-5 conference to the playoff spectator position given the schedule they have to play.

Next: Northern Illinois