It's time for part two of our Big East college football roundtable. On Saturday, we discussed the two teams with new coaches (Rutgers and Pitt). Now it's time to talk about who might step up now that West Virginia has moved on to the Big 12. Joining us in our Big East discussion is our usual band of merry Zealots (including myself, Ross and Pete- who also writes for Big East Coast Bias) and Ken DeCelles from the USF Based Blog Voodoo Five.
Will this man rule the Big East with an iron fist?
Ken: Boise State. I don't think we will know that for sure until everything is sorted out in regards to expansion, but the Broncos are the only nationally respected program in the conference right now.
Pete: With Syracuse and Pitt also headed for the exits soon, Louisville appears to be the heir apparent: young coach, solid roster, exciting and talented QB. But will the Cards hang around if the Big 12 comes calling?
Among teams already in the fold, South Florida could be the team that rises to the top. The Bulls are in a talent laden area, and with many of the traditional powerhouse programs in Florida sputtering, USF may have better than average opportunity.
Ross: Louisville. They return eight starters on offense and nine starters on defense and -- unlike Rutgers -- they also return a coaching staff that's settled in and is beginning to stock the team with "their guys." That continuity is going to give Louisville an edge, as is the fact that Charlie Strong has gotten all of his "early coaching career" hiccups out of the way by now. Louisville looks poised to be the top of the heap in the new-look Big East. That still might mean they just go 8-4, though... this is still the Big East, after all.
Kevin: I think Ken hit the nail on the head with this one. While they haven't technically entered the conference yet, Boise State has a much higher pedigree than any of the Big East teams do at this point. If I was picking someone for this year or from the current members of the conference I think I would have to go with Charlie Strong and Louisville.
Come back on Tuesday as we talk about the Big East players we are most interested in seeing on the gridiron this season.
ACC- Is this FSU's year?