9.03.2009

Big East Preview

The Big East has become the laughing stock of the BCS. A poor-man's ACC, six of the eight teams in the Big East feel they can claim the conference championship this season. The problem is, while the league has parity, there is no BCS title contender, and arguably, no team worthy of the automatic BCS bowl berth. While the league loses some big names, such as Pat White, LeSean McCoy, and Donald Brown, there is talent to be had in the Big East. Now, to the preview.


Winner:

Robert Bode: South Florida has the most talent, with West Virginia close behind, but I think this year the Bulls finally get it done. The biggest key for me is that they are under the radar, and with a stingy defense led by defensive end George Selvie and senior quarterback Matt Grothe heading up a decnet offense, USF will claim their first title. Meanwhile, look out for Pittsburgh, who will have a great defense, and Rutgers. The Scarlet Knights have the least talent, but the most favorable schedule by far.

John Hornbuckle: Expect the defense for South Florida to get the job done.

Game of the Year:

RB: South Florida at Pittsburgh will be the second of four tough games in a row for USF. The Bulls travel to Heinz Field after hosting defending Big East champs Cincinnati, followed by a home game with rivals West Virginia, and then a bye week before a trip to New Jersey to face Rutgers. Get past Pitt and I think the Bulls can survive the slate.

JH: Rutgers at South Florida.

Favorite Player:

RB: Since John took a shocker in Devine, I'll go with the dynamic Cincinnati WR, Mardy Gilyard.

JH: Noel Devine, RB West Virginia.

Team to Watch:

RB: Cincinnati won the title last season, but very few people are giving them a chance in 2009. A very good offense will need to carry an average defense.

JH: It feels weird saying this, but West Virginia is a little under the radar. Noel Devine is a beast, and the Mountaineers could sneak up on some teams this season.

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