Sunday, November 7, 2010
What we learned in the Big East: Week 10
By Brian Bennett
1. South Florida is on the rise: The Bulls looked bad in losing their first two Big East games with pathetic offensive production. Since then, quarterback B.J. Daniels has cut down on his turnovers and made better decisions, and South Florida has won two straight while averaging 33 points. Seniors like Mo Plancher, Jacquain Williams and Terrell McClain are leading the way. Skip Holtz's 5-3 team is sitting pretty for a bowl game now and is still alive in the Big East hunt.
Coach Charlie Strong has Jeremy Wright and Louisville racing toward a bowl bid.
2. Louisville is on the rise, too: The Cardinals stopped their 11-game conference road losing streak and stopped Syracuse's momentum with a 28-20 win at the Carrier Dome. They did what most teams haven't been able to do in picking up the Orange pressure and scoring multiple touchdowns. They also did it with backups starting at quarterback and running back. Charlie Strong might overtake Doug Marrone for Big East coach of the year honors, and he's got his 5-4 Louisville team on the verge of returning to a bowl for the first time since the 2006 season. The Cardinals actually have a case as the league's second-best team.
3. Pitt is really in the driver's seat: The Panthers didn't play this week, but have to be smiling after the results. With Syracuse's loss, every team in the Big East has two conference losses except for Pitt, which is 3-0. While Dave Wannstedt's team still has to play three of its final four games on the road, starting this Thursday at Connecticut, it has an enviable cushion with which to work.