Say this for the Big East: The title chase won’t be without intrigue.
Losses by Louisville and Rutgers last week gave Syracuse and Cincinnati a chance to claim shares of the Big East title. Meanwhile, the two teams that scored the upsets -- Connecticut and Pittsburgh -- still have hopes of becoming bowl eligible.
Should Rutgers be on upset alert against Pittsburgh?
Rutgers and Pittsburgh will play this week in what’s an important Big East game ... for now. The Scarlet Knights are seeking their first Big East title, and Pittsburgh is looking for a bowl game.
After that, it’s off to the ACC for Pittsburgh next season, and then Rutgers to the Big Ten in two years. Elsewhere, UConn and Louisville will face each other this week in a game between teams hoping to get called up to the ACC.
Khaseem Greene helps Rutgers take top spot after 10-3 win over Cincinnati
The de facto Big East championship game between Louisville and Rutgers has been established with the Scarlet Knights’ 10-3 win over Cincinnati on Saturday.
But that’s not going to be the big topic around the Big East in the two weeks before the game in Piscataway. The Big East may yet again be the subject of conference realignment talk as reports surfaced Saturday that Maryland is in negotiations to leave the ACC for the Big Ten, a possibility that could cause Rutgers to leave the Big East to be the Big Ten’s 14th member.
Khaseem Greene looks to shut down new-look Cincinnati offense
Louisville’s not playing this weekend, but the developments from last week loom over the Big East. The fall of the league’s last remaining undefeated team opened other teams to grab some notoriety, either in the standings or rankings.
Rutgers is the only undefeated team in league play, but the Cardinals’ loss re-opened the door for Cincinnati, whose only Big East loss was Oct. 26 to Louisville. The Big East could take another interesting turn when the Scarlet Knights and Bearcats face off in Nippert Stadium this week.
Syracuse's Ryan Nassib hands Louisville its first loss
As recently as Oct. 20, the Big East had three undefeated teams. Four Saturdays later, all three are sitting with at least one loss.
Despite Louisville’s loss to Syracuse in the Carrier Dome, the Big East race likely comes down to the same teams as it appeared back in early October -- the Cardinals, Rutgers and Cincinnati. The Scarlet Knights, whose lone loss is to Kent State, remains the only undefeated team in Big East play. Their tests are upcoming, starting with Cincinnati this week and Louisville in the finale.
Louisville keeps rolling along as the Big East’s only undefeated team, but the rest of the conference has serious questions to answer in the final four Saturdays of the season.
Cincinnati and USF have new quarterback concerns due to ineffectiveness or injury. Pittsburgh and Syracuse must regroup after deflating losses. Rutgers is still looking for what went wrong in two-score loss at home to Kent State. And Temple and Connecticut are searching for anything to keep them competitive in the final weeks.