- Matt Fortuna, ESPN Staff Writer
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It's time to look at some interesting tidbits for this weekend's Big East games. Thank yous are in order for each school's sports information department, along with ESPN Stats & Info.
Teddy Bridgewater led all returning Big East quarterbacks with 22 completions of 25-plus yards last season.
Louisville allowed 42 rushes of 10-plus yards, tied for eighth fewest in FBS last year.
Temple finished 2011 among the nation’s Top 25 in 10 categories, including: No. 3 in scoring defense (13.92) [behind Alabama and LSU], No. 7 in rushing offense (256.54), No. 8 in kickoff returns (25.42), No. 12 in total defense (311.77), No. 14 in net punting (39.39), and No. 15 in pass defense (187.85).
Pitt, which faces Youngstown State, is 10-0 against FCS opponents, most recently topping national-playoff qualifier Maine last year at Heinz Field, 35-29. YSU, meanwhile, is 19-25-1 against FBS teams. But the Penguins are 0-9 against FBS schools since 2001. Last year they lost at Michigan State, 28-6.
For only the third time in 143 seasons of football, Rutgers, which plays Tulane on Saturday at the Mercedes-Benz Superdome, opens the season with three road games in September for just the third time in the 143-year history of the program. The Scarlet Knights and Miami are the only two BCS teams nationally to have three road games in 2012 in September.
Scarlet Knights defensive tackle Scott Vallone has started 38 straight games, the most of any active Big East player. The senior has started every game for Rutgers since his redshirt freshman campaign.
Syracuse's game against Northwestern marks the third time in the last five years, and ninth time overall, that the Orange open against a current Big Ten school. They are 1-6-1 all-time in openers against Big Ten teams, the only victory coming in the 1997 Kickoff Classic at Giants Stadium against Wisconsin, which they beat 34-0.
USF is 11-4 in season openers and a perfect 10-0 in openers at Raymond James Stadium. The Bulls have never faced upcoming opponent Chattanooga.