Big East power rankings: Week 2

September, 6, 2011
9/06/11
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Power Rankings: ACC | Big 12 | Big East | Big Ten | Pac-12 | SEC

Everybody won in Week 1. So what to do about the power rankings? I switched around a few teams, but avoided many wholesale changes for a few reasons. First, only two teams played opponents from AQ conferences. Second, everybody is always a bit rusty in Week 1. So here is how they stack up:

1. West Virginia (1-0). The Mountaineers remain the highest-ranked Big East team in my Top 25 poll, so they stay at No. 1. They scored 34 points in three quarters. Had the game gone the whole way, I think they would have added a few more touchdowns because the offense had just started to hum. Sure they looked inconsistent at times. But so did every team in the Big East this week. The defense, with four returning starters, looked pretty good and only gave up six points.

2. USF (1-0). The Bulls beat the best opponent on the slate, taking down No. 16 Notre Dame, 23-20, on the road. It was a huge win for the Big East and the program. I put the Bulls in my Top 25 rankings this week because of the victory, but not ready just yet to proclaim them the best team in the Big East after one big win. The offense had just one touchdown drive; the defense gave up more than 500 yards. Obviously USF gets major credit for five turnovers and the win, and that bumps them up to No. 2.

3. Pitt (1-0). The Panthers looked shakier on offense and defense than USF in their win over Buffalo -- one of the worst teams in the nation last year -- hence the drop down a spot.

4. Syracuse (1-0). The Orange looked lifeless for three quarters against Wake Forest, but they rallied late for an overtime win against an ACC team. That keeps them at No. 4.

5. Cincinnati (1-0). Sure, scoring 72 points is great. But the opponent was Austin Peay. We will know more about the Bearcats after this weekend in Tennessee.

6. UConn. (1-0). Not sure how exactly a three-quarterback rotation is going to work for much longer. Lyle McCombs looked great and so did the defense. A bigger test awaits Saturday at Vanderbilt.

7. Rutgers (1-0). The Scarlet Knights scored 48 points, pitched a shutout and had some nice defensive scores. But that came against NC Central. Let's see how they play against North Carolina.

8. Louisville (1-0). The Cardinals looked the most ragged of all the league teams last week. They had four turnovers, 10 penalties and failed to score in the second half against FCS Murray State. That means a spot in the cellar for this week.

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