Big East Says WVU/Marshall Made Right Call; Rutgers & Cincy With Big Games

Big East Conference was Consulted on Decision to Stop WVU/Marshall Game

Big East Associate Commissioner Nick Carparelli told MetoNews Monday that the league believes administrators from both schools and the game management staff came to the right conclusion to call the game off with 14:36 remaining in the 4th quarter and WVU leading 34-13.   

"What they deliberated on and what they were considering before the decision was made was right on base," Carparelli said.   "Especially with it being a non conference game our role was really just as a consultant and an advisor.  I was certainly in agreement with all of the decisions that were made."

Carparelli says there is no set time frame or rule to call a game.  It is up to the individual schools.

"I think the NCAA should maybe consider having some sort of a time limit  for safety purposes," Carparelli said.   "But there are so many factors involved.  Who is ahead, who is behind.   The amount of warm-up time that is needed.  The inability to find time to make things up.  There are just so many factors.

"I think most people agree that it was the appropriate outcome," Carparelli said about the game Monday night.  "If you take all of the factors involved there is no doubt in my mind that everybody made the right decision." 


Rutgers and Cincinnati Up Next with High Profile Tests

South Florida started the league toward a reversal of fortunes with the win last weekend at Notre Dame.   This week, Rutgers will play at North Carolina while Cincinnati visits Tennessee.  Rutgers is coming off a 48-0 win over North Carolina Central.

"We were OK," Rutgers coach Greg Schiano said.  "We ran the ball OK at times and at other times not so well.  I’m glad we didn’t give up any sacks.   But we’ll have to make some big improvement between week one and week two because we take a big step up in competition."

North Carolina defensive end Quinton Coples is expected to be among the top five players selected in the 2012 NFL draft.  He had two sacks in UNC’s season opening win over James Madison. 

"They have great personnel on both sides," Schiano said.  "Defensively it reminds me of the defense we had at Miami."

North Carolina quarterback Bryn Renner was dazzling in the opener as he went 22-23 for 277 yards and two touchdowns. 

"The question mark going into the season was their quarterback," Schiano said of Renner.  "The ball never touched the ground.  The incompletion was an interception on a ball that I thought could have been caught." 

Schiano and former UNC coach Butch Davis were together on the Hurricanes coaching staff in the late 1990’s.  Davis was fired in July following a scandal where some Tarheels players had received improper benefits.  

"Butch is a dear friend and a mentor of mine," Schiano said.  "Everyone who is in a position of authority has to make decisions and they did that at North Carolina.   He built a tremendous program there at North Carolina and it kind of got snatched our from under him with four weeks to go before the season.   

"Butch is a man of integrity and I am disappointed things went down the way they did," said Schiano. 

Rutgers played four running backs in it’s opener including freshman Juwan Jamison and Savon Huggins.   Jamison led all rushers with 17 carries for 63 yards.  Huggins had two touchdown runs as he finished with ten carries for 33 yards.

"Each guy will continue to have a role," Schiano said.  "Some guys roles will be bigger than others."

 Cincinnati won it’s opener in blowout fashion 72-10 over Austin Peay.  Now comes a trip to play in front of 102,000 fans at Neyland Stadium. 

"I am very encouraged by the way we’ve handled our business up to this point," Cincinnati coach Butch Jones said.  "Everything escalates going into this week.  There are so many things that go into preparation. 

"We’re going in there to win the football game," Jones continued.   "We have great respect for Tennessee.   You look at the video evidence and you see a very skilled, very tough football team.  But we’ve been preparing for this in terms of the way we practice each and every day."


Victory at Notre Dame Tempered at South Florida.

One day after earning, perhaps, the biggest win in program history, one of the architects of the South Florida football program died.   Former Bulls Athletic Director Lee Roy Selmon suffered a stroke on Friday.   He then died Sunday. 

Selmon was a member of the College Football Hall of Fame and the Pro Football Hall of Fame.   After his stellar playing career with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers , he worked as an assistant athletic director at South Florida. 

"Lee Roy is a big reason why I am here," 2nd year South Florida coach Skip Holtz said.  "I don’t know that I’ve ever been more impressed with a gentleman as I was with Lee Roy after just one meeting. 

"He has hit finger prints all over this athletic department and this football program.   He was the one that was making the phone calls and getting people to rally behind building a football program here at South Florida. 

"It was a real blow and a very sober day," Holtz said of receiving the news of Selmon’s passing on Sunday. 

 South Florida’s win at Notre Dame was just the 10th time in the program history dating back to 1887 that the Irish lost a season opener at home.  

The Bulls add the Irish to their recent list of conquests that includes Clemson, Miami, Florida State and Auburn.   South Florida is 6-4 against ranked teams over the past five seasons.  

South Florida will now have consecutive home games against Ball State, Florida A&M and UTEP leading up to the Big East opener at Pitt.    


1-0 Panthers Catching up to Quick Offensive Pace.

Pitt ran 43 plays in the first half of a 35-16 win over Buffalo.  Panthers coach Todd Graham says the players are still adjusting. 

"You don’t know what its like in this offense until you go out and play." Graham said.   "Jordan Gibbs (Sr. offensive lineman) told me he was so keyed up he actually hyperventilated.  They were keyed up and excited. 

"And its different," Graham said.  "You have to get used to playing at this pace during a game.   We go so fast and I think it stunned them a bit.  We ran so many plays so fast."

Pitt will host Maine this week prior to a trip to Iowa on Sept. 17.


Louisville to get a Look at Dark Horse Heisman Candidate.

Florida International University is touting speedster T.Y. Hilton as a longshot Heisman Trophy candidate.  If you don’t know anything about Hilton, now is a good chance to learn his name.   Last week in a game against North Texas, Hilton had 283 all-purpose yards.

Hilton had 180 yards on five first quarter plays alone.  He had a 62-yard return on the opening kickoff that set up a touchdown.  Hilton then had a 60-yard touchdown reception on FIU’s second possession. 

Hilton finished 12 yards shy of matching his one-game all-purpose school record, even though he touched the ball just 12 times.   

 Hilton enters the Louisville game Friday with 5,923 career all-purpose yards.   He has scored touchdowns passing, receiving, rushing, with punt returns and with kick returns.  He is on the radar of NFL scouts.  

"He is so dangerous because you want to kick away from him but you still have to cover the kick,"  said Louisville coach Charlie Strong.   "We have to find a way to get to him and tackle him because he is such a dangerous threat."  

Florida International is the defending Sun Belt Conference champ and is coming off the first bowl win in school history. 

 WVU’s Tavon Austin was named Big East Conference special teams player of the week following his 100-yard kickoff return for a touchdown that put the Mountaineers up by two touchdowns.   

Austin finished with 190 all-purpose yards against the Thundering Herd with 119 yards on two kickoff returns and 46 yards on three punt returns.   It was his second kickoff return for a touchdown in three seasons.   He had a 98-yard return for a score during the 2009 UConn game. 

The other players honored this week included Ray Graham of Pitt.   Graham was named offensive player of the week  as he rushed for 201 yards and three touchdowns to key Pittsburgh to a 35-16 win against Buffalo Saturday.   It was the second 200+ yard rushing performance for Graham in his career.  It was also the second highest rushing total of the week for a Bowl Subdivision player.   Oregon State’s Malcolm Agnew rushed for 223 yards in a loss to Sacramento State.

The defensive player of the week was South Florida senior safety Jerrell Young. 
Young had a hand in two of USF’s five takeaways as the Bulls pulled off the 23-20 upset win at No. 16 Notre Dame. Young contributed to a potential 14-point swing in the first half by stripping the ball from an Irish runner at the USF 4-yard line — a fumble that was recovered by the Bulls for a 96-yard touchdown. He added a fourth-quarter interception that denied Notre Dame’s comeback bid.

More to come from the league coaches this morning……

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