Cincinnati vs. Louisville: Players You Need to Know in Big East Showdown

Randy ChambersAnalyst IOctober 25, 2012

Cincinnati vs. Louisville: Players You Need to Know in Big East Showdown

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    A game that will get us one step closer in deciding who will win a tight Big East Conference is when the Cincinnati Bearcats hit up Papa John's Cardinal Stadium to play the undefeated Louisville Cardinals.

    Head coach Charlie Strong's team is currently ranked No. 16 in the latest BCS rankings and is looking for its eighth conference title, with hopes to return to a BCS bowl for the first time since 2006. Meanwhile, Cincinnati is coming off of a recent loss to Toledo, but still is very much in the Big East race, especially with a victory on Friday night.

    With the college football regular season quickly coming to an end, the matchups are certainly heating up with so much on the line.

    As we inch closer to big game in the Big East, here are a few players from both teams that you should know before kickoff.

George Winn, RB, Cincinnati

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    This season: 97 rushing attempts, 607 rushing yards and four touchdowns

    Why you should keep an eye on him: George Winn is one of the better running backs that you probably have never heard of. He is a tough back at 5'11", 210 pounds and is about as consistent as you can find. Despite getting fewer carries than your typical workhorse, Winn has still not had a game where he has rushed for under 75 yards this season. The Bearcats will give the senior around 15 touches, and he is always a threat to break one if the defense isn't careful.

Lorenzo Mauldin, DE, Louisville

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    This season: 19 tackles, 5.5 tackles for loss, 4.5 sacks and one forced fumble

    Why you should keep an eye on him: Lorenzo Mauldin has quickly become a true pass-rusher on this Louisville team, as he leads the Cardinals in sacks and tackles for loss. He also is coming off his best performance of his career last week, racking up two sacks and forcing a fumble in the victory over South Florida. Having somebody that can get to the quarterback in a hurry is crucial when playing a team that likes to run as much as Cincinnati.

Brandon Mills, DE, Cincinnati

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    This season: Seven tackles, one sack and three quarterback hurries

    Why you should keep an eye on him: Brandon Mills will get a start in this game, as he will replace sack leader Walter Stewart, who will likely miss the remainder of the season with an injury. The good thing is that the senior has a ton of playing time under his belt, but he has some big shoes to fill heading into this ballgame. Louisville has a mobile quarterback that must be pressured, or things will only become difficult for the Bearcats secondary.

Teddy Bridgewater, QB, Louisville

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    This season: 73 percent completion percentage, 1,694 passing yards, 11 touchdowns and three interceptions

    Why you should keep an eye on him: Teddy Bridgewater is a mobile quarterback, but is about as consistent and accurate with his throws as they come. And the scary thing about it all is that he is only a sophomore. He stands tall in the pocket, has excellent arm strength and has above-average accuracy when throwing on the run. Easily the best quarterback in the Big East, and his near-perfect performance in the red zone is a big reason for the Cardinals' success.

Munchie Legaux, QB, Cincinnati

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    This season: 53 percent completion percentage, 1,435 passing yards, 12 touchdowns, five interceptions, 264 rushing yards and three rushing touchdowns

    Why you should keep an eye on him: Munchie Legaux isn't nearly as consistent as Bridgewater is and doesn't share the same traits as far as accuracy is concerned. However, the junior quarterback did make headlines this week when he came out and said he was better than the Louisville quarterback. A rivalry and a little trash talk are always great, but Legaux better work on his decision-making at the end of games.