Hey there folks! Now that we are in the mix of the college football season, you might not have noticed that we are officially in the start of Big East conference play. I understand that not all of us are fans of the Big East conference, but I am, SO THAT’S WHAT WERE GOING TO TALK ABOUT! The Big East opens with two marquee match ups this week which will surely be very heated matches for each school.
#16 South Florida Bulls (4-0) @ Pittsburgh Panthers (2-2) – Thursday, Sep 29th, 8 P.M.
Last year’s results: Pitt beat USF 17-10 (Pitt has an overall record of 5-2 against USF since USF joined the Big East in 2004)
The last time we saw USF (Cheerleaders pictured above) in the national spotlight, Skip Holtz and Co. were laying the smack down on Notre Dame in week 1 of the college football season. Since then, the Bulls have coasted to a 4-0 record with high scoring victories over Ball State, Florida A&M and UTEP. They are 10th in FBS schools with 45.5 points per game. QB B.J. Daniels has eight touchdown passes and 1,071 yards passing so far, which is good for second highest in the conference. As for the Panthers, they have started the season on shaky ground as they squandered a fourth quarter lead last Saturday in a 15-12 loss to Notre Dame. It was the Panthers second straight loss. Pittsburgh also allowed a 17-point advantage slip away the week before in a 31-27 loss at Iowa. A key player to look out for on the Panthers is RB Ray Graham (508 yards rushing, 6 TDs). Graham is the main reason that Pitt is at .500 this season. I mean their defense gave up 29 points to MAINE for goodness sakes! With this being the prime time Thursday night game on ESPN, the match up should provide some answers for both schools. Can USF match up against a formidable opponent (their first in almost a month)? Can Pitt bounce back after two tough losses?
My Prediction: USF wins easily 42-20
Rutgers Scarlet Knights (2-1) @ Syracuse Orange (3-1) – Saturday, Oct. 1st, 12 P.M.
Last year’s results: Syracuse beat Rutgers 13-10 (Syracuse holds the overall record of 30-10-1 vs. Rutgers)
Fresh off their controversial victory over the Toledo Rockets (see video below), the Syracuse Orange look to remain undefeated at home this season as they play host to Rutgers, or as some SU fans like to call them, the Rutgirls. The match up seems to be pretty even, with a slight advantage going to the Orange due to home field advantage and a more explosive offense. The key player to look out for on the Scarlet Knights is Mohamed Sanu who leads Rutgers receivers with 36 receptions, 341 years and 4 TDs going into this game. Outside of that they don’t really have any offense, so it will be interesting to see how the young secondary of Syracuse will be able to apply pressure to him, while keeping their other receivers from making big plays as well. For Syracuse, Ryan Nassib is having a great season at QB (90 completions on 126 attempts, 9 TDs and 939 yards passing), and we are only in week 5 for the Orange. He also has a slew of players he can throw to, starting with TE Nick Provo, WRs Van Chew (279 yds, 3 TDs) and Alec Lemon (236 yds, 3 TDs) and, not to mention, all purpose RB Antwon Bailey (318 yds rushing, 53 yds receiving, and 3 TDs). I don’t think Rutgers will be able to match up with Syracuse’s high powered offense, however I also feel the same way about the Orange’s defense matching up against Mohamed Sanu. Sanu is Rutgers’ primary threat, and will draw a lot of focus, which should leave some room for their other wide outs to make plays. I look for this to be a high scoring game.
Prediction: Syracuse wins 31-21
Just for fun, here’s a link to the video of last week’s flubbed extra point call…
image courtesy of: http://bhanks.encblogs.com
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