Monday, October 31, 2011
Weekend Rewind: Big East
By Andrea Adelson
Let's take one final look back at Week 9.
Pitt QB Tino Sunseri has thrown for seven touchdowns in eight games this season.
The good: Start with the Louisville defense, which is playing like the best unit in the Big East right now. The Cardinals have held each of their opponents to 25 points or fewer this season. Only one other team has done the same: Alabama. Pretty nice company for the Cardinals, who now rank No. 1 in the Big East in total defense and scoring defense. They are the top Big East team in the national rankings in those categories as well, ranking No. 12 nationally in total defense (295.63 ypg) and No. 11 in scoring defense (16.25 ppg). More on the defense in my video later today. ... How about a little standing O for Pitt quarterback Tino Sunseri, perhaps the most heavily criticized player in the Big East this season. Sunseri has taken heat not only from fans, but from his coaches as well because he has not been able to run the new hurry-up spread offense as efficiently as coach Todd Graham anticipated. But Sunseri had a career-day in a win over UConn, throwing for 419 yards and two touchdowns. Interestingly, Pitt didn’t have a 100-yard receiver. Eight players caught at least one pass in the game. ... West Virginia became bowl-eligible for the 10th consecutive season with its 41-31 win at Rutgers. Quarterback Geno Smith has thrown at least one touchdown pass in 11 consecutive games, and he added his first career rushing touchdown as well. Meanwhile, cornerback Brodrick Jenkins got his first career start and ended up with two interceptions -- the first two of his career.
The bad: Rutgers still is one of the best in the nation in turnover margin, but that number has taken a tumble of late. The Scarlet Knights had forced at least four turnovers in each of their first five games, but have a total of three forced turnovers in their last three games. In those three games, Rutgers is minus-six in turnover margin -- minus-five in two straight losses. ... Syracuse running back Antwon Bailey ran for 70 yards in a loss to Louisville, breaking his four-game streak of 100-plus rushing yards. The defense, which played so well against West Virginia, did not have its greatest day against the Cardinals -- a team that had struggled to move the ball for most of the season. Syracuse allowed Louisville to score a season-high 27 points and its second-highest total offense output against FBS opponents this season (343 yards). ... For the first time all season, UConn did not force a turnover in its loss to Pitt. ... West Virginia receiver Stedman Bailey had two receptions for 51 yards and a touchdown against Rutgers, snapping his streak of five straight 100-yard games.
Victor Anderson, RB, Louisville. Anderson became the 13th 2,000-yard rusher in school history after gaining 93 yards against Syracuse.
Ryan Nassib, QB, Syracuse. Nassib moved past Joe Morris (1978-81) and now ranks eighth in school history in total offense (4,429 yards).
Mohamed Sanu, WR, Rutgers. Sanu had seven receptions for 48 yards against West Virginia, moving into third place on the school's single-season receptions chart (70).
Geno Smith, QB, West Virginia. Smith now has 45 career passing touchdowns and is tied with Rasheed Marshall (2001-04) for No. 3 on the all-time school list. He also passed athletic director Oliver Luck for No. 4 on the all-time passing chart with 5,787 career passing yards.
San San Te, K, Rutgers. Te moved into second place on the school's career scoring chart (307 points) with seven points against West Virginia.
Dave Teggart, K, UConn. Teggart was 2-for-2 on extra-point attempts against Pitt, making him 117-for-117 in his career. Teggart broke the Big East record of 116 consecutive made extra points, held previously by Art Carmody of Louisville.
Week 10 schedule
Louisville at West Virginia, noon, Big East Network