Pittsburgh Panthers: Pitt Stays Atop Big East Power Rankings Despite Loss
Week 1 of the NCAA season is in the books, and the Big East really took a hit. All three teams that had big games lost on the road. All the other teams in the conference began the 2010 season with cupcake opponents and weren't tested.
Here are the current power rankings for the conference. The formula is simple. Wins are important, but a team doesn't get points for beating the Coastal Carolinas of the world.
Passing the eye test is also more important than blanking an FCS school. So, with that being said, let's dive right into the Big East Power Rankings after Week 1 of the season.
1. Pittsburgh Panthers (0-1, 0-0)
Despite the loss to Utah, Pitt stays at the top the rankings. It's not so much for anything they did, but no other team in the conference did anything to merit the top overall spot.
Losing an overtime game on the road at a very tough place to play against a very good team doesn't drop them from the top spot. The Panthers may have fallen out of the AP Poll, but they don't fall here.
They showed a lot coming back and even though Utah tried to give the game away showed a lot. Tino Sunseri started to grow up in front of every one's eyes once the Pitt coaching staff took off the training wheels.
Eliminate a few early mistakes and, Pitt may have won the game outright. The panthers are still the team to beat in the Big East, and remain in the No. 1 spot.
Up next for the Pitt: New Hampshire at home.
2. West Virginia Mountaineers (1-0, 0-0)
West Virginia moves up a spot to No. 2, but wasn't that impressive against Coastal Carolina. Sure, they won 31-0, but there are questions about that offense.
Remember when West Virginia could run for 300-plus yards on anyone at anytime? Things aren't the same under Bill Stewart. The Mountaineers offense struggled in the first half, taking only a 10-0 lead into the half.
They did break in new quarterback Geno Smith, and should get better and more consistent as the season goes on.
It's hard to give a fair assessment of the West Virginia defense. Sure, they pitched a shutout, but I have to see them do that against quality competition.
Beating Coastal Carolina earns you no points.
Next up for West Virginia: On the road against Marshall.
3. Connecticut Huskies (0-1, 0-0)
The Huskies drop a spot in the rankings after getting blitzed by Michigan. I, for one, didn't see this one coming. It wasn't the loss that drops them, but just the general butt-kicking they took.
To the Huskies defense, I don't think many teams would have been ready for the spectacular game that Michigan quarterback Denard Robinson had Saturday afternoon.
This is likely just a minor bump in the road, though, as I still feel the Huskies are the second-best team in the conference.
Up Next for the Huskies: At home vs. Texas Southern.
4. Rutgers Scarlet Knights (1-0, 0-0)
It took Rutgers a while to get going in their 31-0 victory against Norfolk St., but they ended up with a win. Rutgers moves up a spot to the No. 4, but just like WVU, beating up on Norfolk St. says nothing.
Up Next for Rutgers: On the road against Florida International.
5. Cincinnati Bearcats (0-1, 0-0)
The Bearcats struggled in the first game of the Butch Jones era, and drop to No. 5 in the rankings. They opened up with a tough game on the road against a good Fresno St. team, and lost wide receiver Vidal Hazleton for the season in the process.
Cincinnati was blanked in the second half and shows no signs of the explosive offense that was around only a season ago. The running game was non-existent, gaining only 15 yards on the ground in the loss.
Up Next for the Bearcats: Indiana St. at home.
6. South Florida Bulls (1-0, 0-0)
The Skip Holtz era of South Florida football got off to a good start with a 59-14 win against Stony Brook. The offense threw up close to 600 yards and the defense created four turnovers, but none of that means anything against Stony Brook, so the Bulls stay at No. 6 in the rankings.
We will see how they do this week.
Up next for the Bulls: On the road at No. 8 Florida.
7. Syracuse Orange (1-0, 0-0)
The Orange stay put at No. 7, but opened up with a decent win at Akron. The Syracuse defense is going to be the strength of the team and they got off to a good start, holding the Zips under 200 yards of offense, forcing three turnovers.
Ryan Nassib waited an extra year to be the Syracuse starter and had a decent day, throwing for 231 yards and a pair of scores as the Orange racked up 431 yards of total offense.
Up next for the Orange: On the road at Washington.
8. Louisville Cardinals (0-1, 0-0)
Louisville stays at the bottom of the rankings and with good reason. They aren't very good, as they showed in a Week 1 loss to in-state rival Kentucky.
Cardinals head coach Charlie Strong had to be wondering what he got himself into as the Wildcats scored on the second play from scrimmage.
Louisville fought to make a game of it, only losing by a touchdown, but they have way too many holes. The defensive side of the ball is a problem. Stopping teams will be a problem all season. The Cardinals allowed 466 yards of offense to Kentucky, including 230 on the ground.
Up next for the Cardinals: At home against Eastern Kentucky.