Big East football roundup: What they’re sayin’


…Other than that it’s still a joke.

Rutgers 20, Pitt 10
Paul Franklin of the Asbury Park Press writes, “Another week has begun, and with that comes another week to prepare. But when you're unbeaten, ranked 16th in the country and locked in on taking care of business, all is well.”

And so Rutgers has a little swag. Weird. If you take a look at the team’s last five seasons, you might have seen this coming. In 2002, they were getting blown out at home by Buffalo and losing heartbreakers to Temple. A year later, they were beating their lowly counterparts. By 2004, they had their first breakthrough victory, a 19-14 stunner over Michigan State. Of course in good ole Rutgers fashion, they managed to lose at home to a I-AA team the following week. Last season they reached a bowl game and now you have people in Jersey finally believing they’re better than Don Bosco Prep.

Even better news the school’s fans: As long as Lamar Thomas is breathing, there’s no way a guy from Rutgers ever gets hired to coach at The U.

West Virginia 37, UConn 11
Jeff Jacobs of the Hartford Courant writes, “You want the one-sentence explanation on this one? West Virginia is better. You want another sentence? West Virginia is way better.”

If this was 2004 and the Huskies still had Dan Orlovsky, this would have been a game. Unfortunately Randy Edsall has done an awful job recruiting skill players and the defense collapsed in the second half. Edsall helped build the Connecticut program from the ground up so he’s got a ton of leeway, but its time he brings in a little more talent on offense.

Louisville 28, Syracuse 13
Brian Bennett of the Courier-Journal writes, “The Cards (7-0, 2-0 Big East Conference) have fallen behind in the first half during four of their past five games. In three of those contests -- against Miami, Cincinnati and Syracuse -- they didn't score in the first quarter and didn't produce their first touchdown until shortly before halftime”

Louisville gave Syracuse every chance they could to stay in the game and prevailed only because they have that much more athletic ability than the Orange. That won’t be the case with West Virginia. The Mountaineers are going to blow them out on Nov. 2.

Cincinnati 23, USF 6
The Cincinnati Enquirer’s Bill Koch (not the pitcher) writes, “If the University of Cincinnati football team is ever going to be a force in the Big East Conference, the Bearcats are going to have to develop an offense. But on Sunday night all they needed was their stout defense.”

The Bearcats have one of the best rush defenses in the nation and they nearly shutout a team that has a decent chance to go to a bowl game. They’ll never compete with Ohio State for the stud in state recruits but if they can just land a few second tier players on offense, they’ll become a force in the Big East.


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