Impressive Performances In Week 1
Four Big East teams – Cincinnati, Connecticut, USF and West Virginia - were winners in the first week of the college football season. Those teams won by an average of 35.3 points, pushing all four into the rankings or receiving votes category in this week's national polls. West Virginia is ranked No. 8 in both the Associated Press and USA Today polls, while USF is ranked No. 17 in the AP poll and No. 18 in USA Today. Cincinnati and Connecticut are just outside the top 25 of both polls, while Rutgers joins those two as receiving votes in the AP ranking.
Four Games On National Television This Saturday
The Big East Saturday when four of the seven games involving conference teams are available to a national audience. Cincinnati visits No. 4 Oklahoma at 3:30 p.m. Eastern on an ABC regional broadcast. West Virginia will be on ESPN at 4:30 p.m. when the Mountaineers take on East Carolina, and USF can be seen on ESPN2 at 7 p.m. for an in-state matchup against Central Florida. Connecticut kicks things off, meanwhile, when the Huskies face Temple on ESPNU at noon.
Familiar Faces At Quarterback
Big East fans will find some familiar names at quarterback in 2008. West Virginia's Pat White and Rutgers' Mike Teel both enter their fourth years as their teams' regular signal-callers, while USF's Matt Grothe and Cincinnati's Dustin Grutza enter their third years as starters. Syracuse's Andrew Robinson and Connecticut's Tyler Lorenzen are both second-year starters, while Pittsburgh's Bill Stull was the Panthers' Opening Day quarterback last year before he suffered a season-ending injury. Louisville's Hunter Cantwell, a fifth-year senior, had made five career starts before taking over as the regular starter this season.
Big East Bowl Update
With the introduction of the St. Petersburg Bowl to the postseason landscape, the Big East has a new look to its bowl arrangements for 2008. The St. Petersburg Bowl, which will be played Dec. 20 at Tropicana Field in St. Petersburg, Fla., will pair a Big East team against a Conference USA opponent. Further, the PapaJohns.com Bowl will now put a Big East representative against an opponent from the Southeastern Conference Dec. 29. The Big Eastmaintains its arrangements with the Meineke Car Care Bowl (Dec. 27 against the ACC), the Brut Sun Bowl (Dec. 31, Pac-10), the Konica Minolta Gator Bowl (Jan. 1, ACC), and the International Bowl (Jan. 5, MAC). The Big East will send its champion to the Bowl Championship Series in search of a fourth straight BCS win.