It's a perfect fall day where I am. Hope it is for you too. I'm fired up to talk some football. Let's go.
Now that Lane Kiffin is reportedly being fired today, don't you think it would make sense for the 'Cuse to fire G-Rob now and try to hire Kiffin, especially with the Orange having a bye this week? It would let the next head coach of the Orange to get a head start on recruiting once the season ends as opposed to missing quality recruiting time to hire a new coach. Your thoughts?
It may happen. I'm still not a fan of the idea. Kiffin has no ties to the Syracuse recruiting base and has no college head coaching experience. How is this an improvement over Greg Robinson?
Assuming the intangibles are equal (experience, maturity, etc.) does having zach frazor (more of a pocket passer) instead tyler lorenzen at qb help DB and uconn's running game?
I liked what I saw out of Frazer in the second half at Louisville. He's got a live arm and gives UConn a real downfield passing threat. That could really open some things up. The question is his inexperience. Edsall will probably have to keep things simple for him early on.
I think it's going to be tough. The Big East isn't going to get as much respect as the SEC or the Big 12, and there's a chance Penn State goes undefeated. But what are the voters going to do with USF if the Bulls keep winning? They're already No. 10.
Whoops, forgot to post the question. Here it is
Hey Brian, say a Big East team finishes the season Undefeated (UConn or South Florida), do they make it to the National Championship over a 1-loss SEC, Big 12, etc...?
what should worry me most about the huskies visit on saturday?
Their running game and Donald Brown, obviously. And if the score is close late, UConn always seems to find a way to win.
Obviously the Bearcats are having some bad luck this year with injuries, even so, I think this coaching staff is good enough to go 8-5 or 9-4. If that happens is Brian Kelly the most likely Big East coach to be hired away and who are some potential schools interested.
Ha. That's jumping the gun a bit. Keep an eye on the Penn State situation though, given Kelly's ties
Brian, I want to start by saying that I love having some one write specifically about the Big East, and everyday I look forward to reading a new blog that you posted! Your really do a great job! But what do you think about the whole Jarrett Brown and Pat White combo? We all know Jarrett is a great player, (he proved that in his win against Rutgers in'06 and the rest of his fill in time when Pat was hurt) and with him, White, Devine, Sanders and with the offensive line getting better each game, this is potentially the most threatening offense WVU has had.
It was really interesting look, especially with Brown essentially playing fullback on some of those short yardage downs. I plan to write more about this later on in the week.
Do you think South Florida will be more focused this year with the top 10 ranking given what happened last year with 3 losses in a row?
I do get the sense this team is more focused, more mature and maybe most importantly, deeper and better able to withstand injuries.
Now that Frazer is UConn's QB, will we see more 5 wide formations like we did Friday night?
Air Edsall, eh? I still think the running game is UConn's bread and butter.
Do you think that the Big East has gotten off to a bad start and will recover, or is this something we will see for the rest of the season?
Well, there aren't many nonconference games of note left. We've got UNC-UConn this week, Pitt-Notre Dame later on and WVU-Auburn on the 23rd. Big test will be bowl season
For a non Big East fan- at the end of the year when all is said and done- who will USF have played out of conference that is any good?
I think Kansas is pretty good, though it may get knocked around in the Big 12. But you're right, the nonconference schedule isn't all that impressive beyond that.
What is your top 5 to this point?
Here's how I voted in our ESPN rankings: 1. Alabama 2. Oklahoma 3. Missouri 4. LSU 5 Texas
What do you make of UConn's bend don't break defense? They seem to give up big plays but not a lot of TDs.
I think they need to bend a little less. Giving up 500 yards like they did last week is not a good recipe for victory against better teams.
After witnessing the recent success that Jourdan Brooks has had, do you think he can eventually replace ray rice at Rutgers and develop into one of the premiere backs in the Big East down the road?
I like Brooks. He's big (about 230) and can run and he doesn't mess around. But I want to see him do it against better competition than Navy and Morgan State before I anoint him.
We all know the reasons why UConn is not getting a lot of national respect (no football history, Big East, etc.), but a full TD underdog to UNC? I can easily see UConn losing, but that spread is indicative of the lack of respect the Huskies are getting. Do they really have to go 11-1 to garner any legitimate national exposure? And why is Donald Brown not mentioned right up there with Javon Ringer? Their stats are almost identical, but Brown averages about 1 full yard more per carry. What gives?
While they're both great, I found it interesting that Ringer got 25 votes in our Heisman Poll while Brown got 2 (1 from me). I may post about this later.
A story in the CJ suggested that Kragthorpe is giving the team the bye week off to recover from injuries. Doesn't this seem like a massive waste of potential and much needed practice time? shouldn't he be using that time to develop a kicker or even doing his job as recievers coach and teaching Chichester to hold onto the ball? Also, what do you think about Wanny stealing from the kragthorpe (mousetraps) playbook?
I don't think it's all that unusual. Plenty of coaches give their teams a day or two off on bye weeks. And they will still be practicing or watching film. Got a lot of banged up guys over there, including Cantwell and some linemen. And the mousetraps thing isn't unique. Coaches steal all the time.
Everyone know that the Big East still runs through Morgantown!!!! UCONN has been spanked by us each year and cannot match our atheletes speed, Louisville, well will not win nothing with Kragthorpe and no Brohm, and Pitt will not be looked over this year!! The only competition for us really is USF, and then they come to Morgantown in December!!! Brian you really think someone other than WVU will win the Big East??
I like South Florida to win it this year but am not counting out the Mountaineers just yet
Fire Tommy Bowden!!!
I'm not the Clemson AD.
Please rank the top six conferences? as a diehard college football fan this is what i have come up with, id like to have your opinion. 1. SEC 2.Big 12 3. Big Ten 4. ACC 5. Pac 10 6. Big East. And you?
I agree with your top three. I think I'd put the Mountain West at 4, Pac 10 at 5, Big East sixth and then the ACC.
Why do you think USC and Alabama are getting so much mileage and respect out of their UVA and Clemson wins when those teams have proven to be significantly overrated. All you hear about Alabama is how they beat 2 top ten teams. Does anyone really think Clemson is or was a top ten team?
I don't know anyone who still looks at that Virginia win as impressive. Heck, Duke blew out the Cavs. Alabama looked great against Clemson and was spectacular versus Georgia.
Why the South Florida lovefest? They are a joke and UF would totally crush them.
Then they really must not be as good as Ole Miss, huh?
You voted Alabama ahead of Oklahoma, what a joke. They beat an over rated Georgia team that is riddled with injuries and an under-achieving Clemson team. What is your justification?
And who is Oklahoma's best win? TCU? I think beating Georgia on the road dwarfs anything Oklahoma has done, but I like both teams a lot.
When UC gets Tony Pike back do you think they will establish themselves as the most explosive offense in the Big East?
That offense has gone through a lot of change, so it would be hard to say they're going to just pick right back up. And remember, they only had, what, 14 points at Akron before he got hurt?
What's the story with Loiusville's kicking game and how do they have any shot at success w/o even attempting 30+ yarders?
The story is Philpott has been a disappointment and Dougherty had a hip injury in the summer and is not 100 pct still. They need to find some answers, because it's killing them
Why the Mountain West at 4?
They've owned the Pac-10 and have two undefeated ranked teams (BYU and Utah), which is something neither the Pac-10 nor ACC can say.
please tell the uconn nation that they need to beat good teams before they can solidify a place between all the hype they garner from running all over bottom of the barrel squads. i dont see them beating WVU, USF, or UC this year. What do you think of their place given their strength of schedule?
i think it's about right so far. They'll have a couple chances down the road to prove themselves.
I respect your opinion as well as your reply. But I still feel like Oklahoma has more speed, depth and experience over Alabama. Now that would be a great N.C. game with two traditions with coaches that have been across from each other in that game before. I still feel like you may be a bit star struck with Alabama.
Not star struck. I saw Oklahoma in person and was dazzled. Alabama has the better resume, is all
With quaterback issues and an underachieving defense, what do should Bearcat fans expect to see or have to look forward to the next couple weeks agains Marshall and Rutgers?
Just survive, no matter the score. Kelly said today Pike should be back for UConn after these two.
USF seemed to struggle with Kansas earlier in the season, at home, was it simply a difficult match-up or is there that much of a division between the Big 12 and Big East that a top flight program, maybe even the best the conference has to offer struggles with a middle of the road team like Kansas, maybe 6th best in the big 12?
I don't know, I thought Kansas was pretty good. Big 12 is absolutely stacked though.
Where would South Florida finish if, say, they were in the Big Ten? I put them about 6th or 7th.
No way. Name me five teams better.
What is the biggest suprise so far in the Big East?
There have been more disappointments than actual surprises. UConn and South Florida probably should have been 5-0 and they are. No one is exceeding expectations.
What do you think of this weeks thursday game between the Bulls and Pitt relying on the run do you think the d line will be able to hold up without selvie? what would be your prediction for the game?
Good question, Kevin. The Pitt running game vs. the USF D-line is going to determine this game, and Selvie may be out. I still think USF wins because of the home field and because Pitt just isn't on that level yet.
If you had to pick between an undefeated BYU or an undefeated USF to go the NC game who would you take?
That's a very interesting question. I don't think either will get there. BYU might have the better resume now, but their computer rankings will probably go down in conference play. I think BYU has been more impressive thus far.
USF 6th or 7th in the Big Ten, please. People, just because the Big East is not a great top to bottom conference does not mean it's best teams can't complete nationally. In fact, check the bowl results from the past 3 years
Penn State, Wisconsin, Ohio State, Michigan State, and Illinois are all better than South Florida
if you are living in louisville, you must love my morning jacket, right?
Absolutely. Went to their show on the waterfront in August. It was amazing
With Kansas being the exception, UConn and USF have played similar competition with similar results (UConn 12-9 over Temple; USF 17-9 over FIU). Why is USF ranked so much higher?
Because South Florida just passes the "look test" better. I know that's a weak answer, but that's how this sport goes sometimes.
Is Dave Wannstedt safe with a 7-5 or 6-6 season, or is irate fan base getting the attention of the atheletic department?
He has to go to a bowl game, and I don't know that 6-6 will make anyone very happy.
So I hear a lot of NFL and bowl prospects are going to be at the game(USF-Pitt) where you going to be this weekend?
I'll be at UConn-UNC. Mark Schlabach will be at USF-Pitt
Preseason talk tended to be confident about WVU's offense while a lot of finger pointing at their defense as the weak link. Do you feel that those roles have reversed with the Defense playing very well, and pressure now being directed at the offense to play to thier potential?
Yes, I do. The defense has given up three points in regulation after the first five minutes at Colorado. But neither the Buffs nor Marshall are all that imposing offensively
Ohio State, Wisconsin, Penn State, Illinois, Northwestern, and 6. Meeechigan
Ben, you're off your meds if you think Michigan would beat South Florida
Does Syracuse have a shot at beating Rutgers this season?
I think Rutgers is going to get better if they don't implode. I'm afraid the Orange are staring down the barrel of 1-11.
Check the Bowl results? Man, if only my conference made sure they never played a ranked team in the Bowls then their record would be pretty good too....
i'm pretty sure Oklahoma was ranked last season. And Georgia in 2005. Maybe I'm missing something here ...
Are you going to make it down for any USF games?
Already been to one (Kansas) and am sure I'll be at more.
Season ends now. Which Big East teams go to bowl games and where?
This is a tough one to do in a chat, but I'll give it a shot. USF Orange Bowl UConn Sun West Virginia St. Pete Cincinnati Meineke Pittsburgh International Louisville Papajohns.com
Brian, West Virginia is the only team in the Big Least that has any bragging rights. USF has never done anything but knock off overrated Big East teams. When they play OOC against anyone with a pulse, they lose.
You seem to forget USF going to The Plains and beating Auburn last year. But, you're right in the sense that they've never finished higher than third in a conference. Needs to change
Brain, name me one team in the SEC that South Florida could beat?
No problem at all. Arkansas.
UConn will be in the BCS. We own South Florida. No way they get to the BCS.
Can't wait for that game in Tampa. Should be a lot of fun.
Can Louisville still win 8 games, or did the UCONN game do them in?
Eight is an awfully tall order there, Logan. I think 7 is the ceiling.
auburn vs. west virginia. who you got and why?
I've got the under
Brian, I've been a UConn fan since the Yankee Conference days; class of '92. I've felt all along that Lorenzen needed to sit due to his subpar throwing arm. The things that he was doing right last season; making good decisions and not throwing interceptions; seemed to have reversed their course this season. Am I the only one out there that things the introduction of Zach in the offense will add a critical dimension that could propel this sound Husky team to the next level?
I think it could be a blessing in disguise. It's hard to beat experience, but Frazer has more talent.
Do you think BYU at this point being ranked where they are has a remote shot at playing in the title game if the run the table and remamain the only undefeated team come season's end?
No, not under this current system.
Any upset special alerts for the Big East worth mentioning?
I'd watch Cincinnati at Marshall, given the Bearcats' shaky QB situation.
by your bowl predictions, is the Papa Johns a more prestigious bowl than Meineke because of the SEC tie in.
After the first couple, there's no real pecking order other than who the bowl wants. I'm sure Papajohn's would want that tie in with Louisville. There have been rumors of the bowl moving there anyway.
Do you believe that the Big East is a better conferance now that Miami, VT, and BC have left?
Of course not. But it's just as good as the ACC, right now.
Since you are from the Bluegrass State, do you think Kentucky has a chance to upset Alabama? It has all the makings of an upset, in my opinion.
I've seen Kentucky's offense up close, and I don't think they can score enough points against Bama
Who do u think will be in the BCS Championship bowl?
I think it'll be SEC vs. Big 12. Lot to sort out in those two leagues still.
Hey mate, what do you think about Florida State. I loved watching them when I lived in the States. Are they on the way back up?
Not that I've seen. They still can't score.
Brian, if the majority of criticism on the Big East is that their OOC schedule is weak, then why don't USF and UConn schedule big games that challenge them? I know UConn has Notre Dame and Tennessee but not for about 8 years! Do you have any OOC schedules for next year?
They've tried, and it's getting better. USF played Auburn last year and Kansas this year. WVU has Colorado and Auburn. Big East teams are making an effort to upgrade schedules, but it's not easy to do
What do you think Syracuse University will do about the coaching situation? Have you heard anything new?
They've got a bye week and then at West Virginia and at South Florida. No coach is going to lead them to victory in those. I wouldn't be surprised to see G-Rob let go right after the USF loss, if not sooner
In the Daily Campus (Uconn's Student paper) and article titled "Uconn offense has forgot about Dre" referring to Andre Dixon. Do you think this is true or do you think Andre will be making an appearance in helping take the load of Donald Bron
I think Dixon has been slowed by that ankle injury, and Brown has been too good to take out. But Brown needs a break. He and Ringer are on a race to the hospital
Why does everyone hate the Big East so much?
East Coast bias
Who do u think will win the Heisman
Right now, I'd take whichever team wins the Big 12's quarterback, whether that's Daniel, Bradford or McCoy. They'll each get a chance to knock the other out
Brian you forgot to mention in the scheduling department for South Florida, Miami in '09 and UF in 2010
There ya go. Lots of good Big East games coming up, too many to mention. Tranghese made it a priority
i know notre dame has a pretty easy schedule until later on in the schedule,how do you think the irish will prevail?what is gonna take for them to be ranked?
I don't think they've been impressive enough to be ranked, but if they keep winning they're going to find themselves in a nice bowl. Possibly the Gator, taking a Big East spot. Something to keep an eye on.
Is the ACC better than the SEC
In hoops, maybe.
Considering UConn will have half its season behind it by Sunday morning, its not too early to be looking at the bowl configuration. I understand Notre Dame travels well and gets decent ratings, but why does everyone slot them into the Gator Bowl merely as a result of possibly going 6-6. Would the Gator Bowl really want ND over a potentially 10-2 UConn or 9-3 WVU or whoever the Big East runner-up ends up being?
Butts in seats. Any bowl will jump at getting the ND fan base. It was a bad deal the Big East agreed to when it came to the Gator Bowl, but the league was not in a position of strength at the time because it had just been raided.
I think every Rutgers fan is disgusted in their play right now, cuz i know i am. Realisticly, can you see a turn around in the future or are my eyes flowing like the Mighty Raritan for the remainder of the season?
I think they will play better. The losses to Fresno, UNC and Navy look slightly better now that UNC has beaten Miami and Navy beat Wake. Still, there are a lot of problems on this team and their schedule is tough. 5-7 would be a good bounceback
Who from the Big East, in your opinion, is ranked come end of the season and where?
I think USF ends up in the top 10, UConn in the teens or early 20s and WVU sneaks back in somewhere.
At this point in the session what is the biggest game left in the big east
Right now, today, it's UConn at USF, Nov. 23. That could change if one or both fall off beforeheand
do you think Greg Schiano will be the next coach at Tennessee?
Maybe he and Fulmer could switch
From your point of view, who are the top 3-5 RBs in college football this season?
Ringer, Brown, Moreno would be my top 3 right now. I'm sure I'd forget someone if I tried to go deeper off the top of my head
Do you think it will take WVU beating Auburn for them to be back in the Top 25? Also, when do you think WVU will start getting the love concerning our defense?
if they do that, then yeah I'd think they'd be back in at 5-2. And they have to shut someone down who's more impressive than Colorado or Marshall on offense. Rutgers and Syracuse next up, so no dice
OK, my time is up. Thanks for all the good questions. See you next week at the same time.