Keeping track of how the 10 programs vying for this year's Lambert-Meadowlands trophy fared last week, and a look ahead to next weekend's action.
|1t. Boston College Eagles||7-5||4-4||TBD|
|1t. Rutgers Scarlet Knights||7-5||3-5||TBD|
|3t. Penn State Nittany Lions||6-6||2-6||TBD|
|3t. Pittsburgh Panthers||6-6||4-4||TBD|
|5t. Temple Owls||5-6||3-4||@ Tulane|
|X - Buffalo Bulls||5-6||3-4||--|
|X - Army Black Knights||4-7||--||Idle|
|X - Syracuse Orange||3-9||1-7||--|
|X - Massachusetts Minutemen||3-9||3-5||--|
|X - Connecticut Huskies||2-9||1-6||SMU|
Week 14 Results
Boston College 28, Syracuse 7
Rutgers 41, Maryland 38
Michigan State 34, Penn State 10
Cincinnati 14, Temple 6
Pittsburgh 35, Miami 23
Buffalo 41, Massachusetts 21
Memphis 41, Connecticut 10
BC got the results it wanted in the Penn State and Temple games, but Rutgers is determined to make this thing interesting, erasing a 25-point deficit to beat Maryland 41-38 on Saturday. The victory marked the largest comeback win in program history as well as RU's fourth straight win over a Randy Edsall-led team.
It was an old feeling for Randy Edsall, this time with a different team and in a different stadium. In 2008, RU beat UConn on four field goals when a late try by Huskies kicker Tony Ciaravino hit the upright with 1:09 remaining. In 2009, Tom Savage found a streaking Tim Brown for an 81-yard TD with 22 seconds left to stun a Rentschler Field crowd. And in 2010, a scrappy young freshman by the name of Chas Dodd threw for 322 yards and two TDs for the third straight win against Randy Edsall's UConn program.
Edsall is in a different place now, but the result was the same. After being down 35-10 with less than three minutes to go in the first half, the Scarlet Knights completed the largest comeback in school history to beat the Maryland Terrapins, 41-38.
Ralph Friedgen's revenge? Ralph Friedgen's revenge.
Penn State didn't put up much of a fight in a 34-10 loss to Michigan State. The Nittany Lions seniors probably deserved a finer home ending, but deserve's got nothing to do with it.
The 17 Penn State seniors deserved a victory Saturday, wearing the blue and white for the last time in Beaver Stadium. They'd been through 4 head coaches, unprecedented sanctions, and everything that came with that. Unfortunately, as Will Muney once spoke, "deserve's got nothing to do with it". And, indeed, clearly it does not.
But no senior class has ever displayed more commitment. These seniors were 2nd and 3rd year players when the sanctions were announced. Practically none of them had made their mark at Penn State to that point. If they saw the field at all, they were spot starters or role players. The enticement to leave was at its peak, and they could all suddenly transfer, penalty free.
Elsewhere, Pitt became bowl eligible with a 35-23 victory over Miami in the regular season finale. Was there a more unpredictable and frustrating team to follow than Pitt in the ACC this season?
So, I mean, who saw that coming?
Pitt, as they're wont to do, came out and won a game they really had no business winning. Miami was seen as the better team, was playing at home, and had the momentum of Senior Day behind them. Pitt had, well, an injured star and a chance to go to a bowl game. That's why they play the games, boys and girls.
The Panthers ended up not only winning, but did so rather easily, 35-23, to become bowl eligible.
Elsewhere, Temple dropped a 14-6 decision to visiting Cincinnati. Buffalo finished the year on a positive note, running all over UMass in a 41-21 victory. Memphis made quick work of Connecticut, winning 41-10.
Week 15 Schedule
Temple at Tulane
SMU at Connecticut
Only two games this week of no Lambert Meadowlands Trophy consequence. BC and Rutgers will head into bowl season tied atop the standings with identical 7-5 records. The Eagles have a better conference record (4-4 to 3-5) as well as the signature win (a 37-31 victory over then-USC). However, BC will head into bowl season with Rutgers, Penn State, Pittsburgh and Temple within striking distance.
A Rutgers (or Penn State or Pittsburgh) win in the bowl game coupled with a BC loss would really make for a difficult decision for the ECAC selection committee. But right now, it seems like the Eagles' trophy to lose.