Around the Big East
by Matthew McKinley, 11/13/02
Well, it’s been a lousy two weeks for Virginia Tech fans. The Hokies have gone from being in contention for the National Championship, to not being in contention for the Big East Championship (unless you accept message board poster andrewteg’sfairy-tale scenario as possible). But there’s still a lot of Hokie football to look forward to…..just not this weekend.
Last Weekend’s Games
(#21) Pittsburgh 29, Temple 22
You’d think that maybe after beating us again, they’d roll on the rest of the season like last year. Uhhh….nope. Temple led most of the way, and it took four second-half turnovers by the Owls to allow the Panthers to win. The Panthers pulled ahead for good on an 11-yard fumble return for a TD early in the fourth quarter, capping the scoring on a day where Temple outgained Pitt(sburgh) 340 yards to 193.
West Virginia 24, Boston College 14
Another game. Another Big East win. And another 100-yd rushing performance for Avon Cobourne, the Big East’s all-time rushing leader. On the strength of 289 yards rushing, West Virginia leapfrogs over the Hokies in the Big East standings with a win over Boston College, with the Virginia Tech game looming next Wednesday. Can anybody stop Avon Cobourne? Yes. "Vegas, baby! Vegas!"
(#1) Miami 26, Tennessee 3
Miami woke up from its past three lackluster games and dominated the Volunteers in a game that, by halftime, was as dominating an effort as the Hurricanes had put up all season. Tennessee only gained 218 total yards, with 74 of that coming on Cedric Houston’s run on the 2nd play of the game. After that, it was all Miami, as they showed the pollsters who the real number one team in the land was. Of course, it didn’t hurt that the other number one team lost to Texas A&M.
Syracuse 50, (#13) Virginia Tech 42 (3OT)
Who are these guys, and what have they done with my Hokies? Over 500 yards passing on offense? Over 600 yards given up on defense? And less than 50 rushing yards on the day? Somebody please tell me I took the blue pill.
Syracuse (4-6, 2-3) @ Boston College (5-4, 0-4), Saturday @ 12:00pm, ESPN Gameplan
Boston College seems to be in a pretty big hole right now, at 5-0 out of conference and 0-4 in conference, but they finish up the season with Syracuse, @Temple, and RUT[S]gers. 3-4 doesn’t look that great in conference, but if they manage it, they’ll be in the top 5, and they’ll be getting a bowl bid at 8-4. But it needs to start right here.
Temple (3-7, 1-4) @ Rutgers (0-5, 1-8), Saturday @ 3:30pm, no TV
The annual Battle for the Basement. *yawn*
There’s are some pretty good games on this weekend. Here are a few you might not want to miss.
(#20) NC State @ Virginia, Saturday @ 12:30pm, JP Sports & ESPN Gameplan
Good thing we don’t have to pull for Virginia anymore for SOS reasons. It should be pretty interesting to see how well Virginia’s secondary can hang with the Wolfpack’s high-octane passing game. And if you don’t give a rat’s patootie about this game, might I recommend (#5) Iowa @ Minnesota (noon, ESPN)? Iowa’s playing some pretty darn good ball right now.
(#3) Texas @ Texas Tech, Saturday @ 3:30, ABC Regional
This should be a scorefest. I know that Texas has a pretty good defense, but Tech’s QB Kliff Kingsbury has been slinging the ball rather well this year. His stats have been nothing short of impressive (3,982 yards, 35 touchdowns against 10 interceptions, .686 completion percentage) against some decent Big XII teams too. But against Texas, will that be a different story? Another good-looking game at this timeslot is (#7) Georgia @ Auburn (same time, CBS). Georgia needs a win here to clinch the SEC East title for the first time since the SEC went to divisional play.
Arizona State @ (#8) Southern Cal, Saturday @ 7:00pm, TBS
ASU Sackmaster Terrell Suggs against USC QB Carson Palmer. This’ll be a decent game to watch, at least until 9pm, when you should switch to……………
Alabama @ (#12) Louisiana State, Saturday @ 9:00pm, ESPN
LSU is coming off what probably is one of the all-time great Hail Mary plays in college football history. Will there be a letdown against a resurgent Alabama team? While Alabama can’t contend for the SEC West title, a loss here by LSU means that Arkansas or Auburn have a much better chance at it. This is a must win game for the Bayou Bengals.