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2011 CFN Big East Week 5 Roundup

CollegeFootballNews.com
Posted Oct 3, 2011


2011 CFN Big East Week 5 Staff Picks, Roundup, & More

2011 Big East Week 5

- Cincinnati | Connecticut | Louisville | Pittsburgh
- Rutgers | South Florida | Syracuse | West Virginia
Big East Roundups Week 1 | Week 2 | Week 3 | Week 4

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Week 5 Roundup

Player of the Week

Pitt RB Ray Graham ran 26 times for 226 yards and two touchdowns and caught four passes for 42 yards in the win over South Florida.

Three Best Games of the Week

1. Western Michigan 38 … at Connecticut 31
2. Rutgers 19 … at Syracuse 16 OT
3. Marshall 17 ... at Louisville 13

Big East Standings
  Conf. Overall
Rutgers 1 0 3 1
Pitt 1 0 3 2
Cincinnati 0 0 4 1
W. Virginia 0 0 4 1
Louisville 0 0 2 2
Conn. 0 0 2 3
USF 0 1 4 1
Syracuse 0 1 3 2
Players of the Week
9/3 S Jerrell Young, USF
9/10 QB B.J. Daniels, USF
9/17 QB Geno Smith, WV
9/24 WR Mohamed Sanu, Rutgers
10/1 RB Ray Graham, Pitt

Games of the Week
9/3 at Syracuse 36 … Wake Forest 29 OT 
9/10 at Vanderbilt 24 … Connecticut 21
9/17 at Iowa 31 … Pitt 27
9/24 at Syracuse 33 … Toledo 30 OT  
10/1 Western Michigan 38 … at Connecticut 31
Cincinnati ... Cincinnati 27 ... at Miami University 0 … The conditions weren’t exactly ideal, but Zach Collaros still threw for 251 yards and a touchdown to overcome two picks and a mediocre day from the Bearcat ground game. Collaros ran well with 89 yards, and Isaiah Pead scored on two scores, but the offense couldn’t seem to get into a groove in a grinding win. The pass rush continues to be terrific and the run defense has been fantastic, and now it’s on to Big East play with Louisville the free space game before a nasty run of four road games in five. The team is playing well enough to be in the hunt for a bowl, but the secondary needs to start tightening up.

Connecticut ... Western Michigan 38 … at Connecticut 31 … Connecticut might have lost to Western Michigan but it took another step forward in the passing game. For the second straight week, Johnny McEntee showed that he’s the quarterback to revolve the offense around completing 22-of-39 passes for 300 yards and four scores, while Lyle McCombs balanced things out with 136 yards on 24 carries. The ten penalties were a problem but the breakdowns in the secondary were the reason for the loss, and now the Huskies get Geno Smith and West Virginia. McEntee and the Huskies have to be ready for another firefight.

Louisville ... Marshall 17 ... at Louisville 13 … The Louisville defense did a nice job all game long right up until the end. It bent, but rarely broke against a horrible Marshall attack, but when the big stop was needed, it didn’t come. The run defense has been terrific and the line got in the Herd backfield with 12 tackles for loss, but the offense couldn’t keep drives going and the 11 penalties were a killer. Teddy Bridgewater is learning on the fly, with his two interceptions overshadowing a nice 20-of-29, 221-yard, one score, one touchdown run performance. Against North Carolina, the Cardinals have to win a turnover battle – a HUGE problem so far – and the penalties have to stop.

Pitt ... at Pitt 44 … South Florida 17 … Pitt wasn’t quite hitting on its down field throws early on, and the defense struggled a wee bit early on to stuff the USF offense, and then Ray Graham took over the defense turned its intensity up a few notches and the shocker was on. Call this a phenomenal gut-check moment for new head coach Todd Graham’s program. After losing heartbreakers to Iowa and Notre Dame, the Panthers could’ve hung their head a little bit, but instead they came out focused, aggressive, and very, very, sharp. Ray Graham will get all the headlines after his amazing 226-yard, two score day, but Tino Sunieri had a strong game, too, completing 22-of-33 passes for 216 yards and a touchdown, while running 12 times for 35 yards and a score. The first part of the season might have been a disappointment, but Pitt is 1-0 in Big East play with a trip to Rutgers up next.

Rutgers ... Rutgers 19 … at Syracuse 16 OT … The offense was a disaster at times. There wasn’t any running game, finishing with just five net yards, and the offensive line couldn’t protect the Scarlet Knight passers, but San San Te was terrific hitting four field goals and Gary Nova came up with the short touchdown pass to Mohamed Sanu needed to force overtime. The ground game will be a problem all season long, but the team came into the game second in the nation in turnover margin and came up with five takeaways to offset the four turnovers and 13 penalties. It wasn’t pretty, it took some luck and fortunate plays from the D, but helped by a huge day from Logan Ryan, who made nine tackles with a tackle for loss with four broken up passes, and with 11 tackles from Khaseem Greene, RU is 3-1 going into the showdown against Pitt.

South Florida ... at Pitt 44 … South Florida 17 … Where was the fire for USF? It was like the energy level was at 3 compared to the flying around, ultra-aggressive defense rocked over the first three weeks. The pass rush wasn’t there, there were too many missed tackles, and the D couldn’t get off the field as Pitt held on to the ball for 36:10. USF actually moved the ball a bit with a good, balanced day with Darrell Scott averaging 6.3 yards per carry and B.J. Daniels running for 43 yards and a score and throwing for 223 yards. The offense might not have been great, but it can’t be blamed. This was on the defense that didn’t bring it’s a game, and it needs to be a much different story at UConn next week.

Syracuse ... Rutgers 19 … at Syracuse 16 OT … Syracuse finally lost an overtime game. With five turnovers, eight penalties, and no long drives in the fourth quarter, the team was hardly sharp. The run defense was excellent, the pass rush was strong, and Dan Vaughn came up with 15 tackles and Dyshawn Davis was terrific with six tackles, two sacks, 3.5 tackles for loss and a forced fumble. The team has been getting by with little offensive production and not enough from its secondary, but playing Tulane next week should be a good break before getting two weeks off to prepare for West Virginia.

West Virginia... at West Virginia 55 … Bowling Green 10 … Who said the Mountaineers couldn’t run the ball? After spending the first part of the season bombing away, Dustin Garrison took over against Bowling Green with 291 yards and two touchdowns on 32 carries. This was Dana Holgorsen showing the Big East that his offense can blast off 360 rushing yards on occasion, and now teams will have to prepare for everything. Geno Smith did his part with 238 passing yards and three scores in a complete offensive effort. The defense still can’t generate any semblance of a pass rush, but that’s nitpicking. Finally, the Mountaineers jumped all over a team from the start, and as long as the offense is keeping the turnovers to a minimum, there won’t be any problems over the next several weeks starting with a home date against UConn up next.

Thursday, September 29

at Pitt 44 ... USF 17
- Game Story, CFN Analysis, & Recap
CFN Prediction: USF 30-21
Line: USF -2.5   O/U: 52

Saturday, October 1

Rutgers 19 ... at Syracuse 16 OT
- Game Story, CFN Analysis, & Recap
CFN Prediction: Syracuse 28-24
Line: Syracuse -3   O/U: 50

Cincinnati 27 ... at Miami University 0
- Game Story, CFN Analysis, & Recap
CFN Prediction: Cincinnati 35-16
Line: Cincinnati -13.5   O/U: 56

Western Michigan 38 ... at Connecticut 31
- Game Story, CFN Analysis, & Recap
CFN Prediction: Western Michigan 27-17
Line: Connecticut -3   O/U: 44.5

Marshall 17 ... at Louisville 13
- Game Story, CFN Analysis, & Recap
CFN Prediction: Louisville 24-13
Line: Louisville -10    O/U: 46.5

at West Virginia 55 ... Bowling Green 10
- Game Story, CFN Analysis, & Recap
CFN Prediction: West Virginia 41-17
Line: West Virginia -20.5   O/U: 60.5