College Football Week 14: Louisville At Rutgers
- CoachingCharlie Strong, who will be a hot name for some of the head coaching vacancies around the country, has his team one win away from a BCS bowl. Louisville started 9-0 but has dropped two straight.With Louisville’s loss, Rutgers could’ve clinched the Big East title and a BCS bowl bid by beating Pittsburgh last week. Instead, the Scarlet Knights were smacked 27-6. First year head coach Kyle Flood will have to get his team refocused.
- OffenseQuarterback Teddy Bridgewater is sixth in the country in passer rating but has a fractured wrist (on his non-throwing hand) and a bad ankle. He is expected to play, however; how well he can perform is obviously critical.Rutgers gained just 207 yards last week. Quarterback Gary Nova has struggled since a horrific performance against Kent State in late October.
- DefenseThe Cardinals’ defense is average at best, and Rutgers will certainly try to expose Louisville’s weakness in defending the run.The Scarlet Knights have counted on their defense all season, a top-25 unit in both yards per play and takeaways. Linebacker Khaseem Greene is in line for his second consecutive Big East Defensive Player of the Year award.
- Special TeamsLouisville’s special teams are among the worst in the country according to Football Outsiders’ FEI ratings. The Cardinals have made 14 of 16 field goals, however.Rutgers has been very good on kickoff coverage but poor in most everything else.
In the de facto Big East championship, Rutgers has the edge in what should be a rowdy atmosphere in Piscataway. -Andrew Kahn, College Football Contributor