Hooray, the Big East has a ranked team again!!!
With a big win over Pitt that we’ll discuss later, West Virginia is back in the top 25 and they look like the only team in the conference that has the athletes and the defense to compete with the kind of top level opponent that the winner of the BE will face in a BCS bowl.
Unfortunately for West Virginia (and probably the conference as well), it’s Connecticut that controls its own destiny heading into the final weekend of the regular season.
With UConn, West Virginia, and Pitt tied atop the standings at 4-2 and the Huskies owning head to head wins over both the Mountaineers and the Panthers, Randall Edsall has his school thinking very realistically about a potential BCS bowl bid for the first time in program history.
UConn is but a win over South Florida away from punching its ticket, but should BE fans outside of Storrs be cheering for the Bulls next weekend? I say yes.
Anything can happen, but let’s be honest here. UConn would probably get killed by every single potential BCS opponent, which would deal a PR bid to the conference that I don’t think anybody wants. West Virginia and their stellar defense gives them a chance to play with almost anybody in the country in my opinion and they would best represent the Big East in the BCS.
West Virginia 35 Pittsburgh 10
Pitt moved the ball more effectively against WVU than pretty much any team this year, particularly through the air, but four turnovers by Pitt and a bunch of big plays by Mountaineer QB Geno Smith in the passing game (9-12 for 212 yards and three TD’s) made this one a laugher.
UConn 38 Cincinnati 17
This is what we call taking care of business. UConn needed to win to keep control of their own destiny in the Big East, and win they did. They used five turnovers (including four picks by Cincy QB Zach Collaros) and a workmanlike performance by Jordan Todman (31 carries for 175 yards and three TD’s) to rout the Bearcats.
Louisville 40 Rutgers 13
Wow, that wasn’t close. The Cards made fans a bit nervous in losing two in a row when they just needed one more win to get to bowl eligibility, but they took care of business against the sputtering Scarlet Knights. Bilal Powell looked like a man on a mission, rushing for 123 yards and a touchdown and also catching a couple TD passes.
Boston College 16 Syracuse 7
Syracuse just could not get off the field against Boston College. They allowed 11-18 conversions on third down and 185 yards on the ground on 42 carries to Andre Williams. They did hold BC to three red zone field goals, which kept this one close.
South Florida 23 Miami (FL) 20 (OT)
Nice win for the the Bulls, but not such a nice loss for Miami coach Randy Shannon, who is now former Miami coach. USF didn’t really hurt when QB BJ Daniels left with an injury at halftime, because Bobby Eveld outplayed the guy he has backed up all year. Miami was plagued by many of the same troubles it has had all year, giving the ball away three times.
1. West Virginia 8-3 (4-2) – They need help to win the title, but they’re playing the best football in the BE
2. UConn 7-4 (4-2) – They’ve come a long way since their 0-2 start in-conference
3. South Florida 7-4 (3-3) – Close losses vs. Pitt and Syracuse will cost them BE title
4. Pitt 6-5 (3-3) – They’re in free fall mode now
5. Syracuse 7-5 (4-3) – Disappointing finish to a very surprising season
6. Louisville 6-6 (3-4) – Is a rematch with UK up next in Birmingham?
7. Cincinnati 4-7 (2-5) – That’s not a good start to your tenure Butch Jones, but keep going
8. Rutgers 4-7 (1-5) – Between on-field struggles and injury to Eric LeGrand, it’s been a trying year