|Cincinnati DE Walter Stewart was dominant in the Bearcats' opener against Pittsburgh. (US Presswire)|
Here's CBSSports.com Rapid Reports Big East power ranking:
1. Louisville (2-0): The Cardinals haven't been tested in either of their first two games, and sophomore quarterback Teddy Bridgewater continues to be a model of efficiency. Bridgewater has completed 49 of 60 passes -- albeit against some not-so-strong defenses. Still, the interception-prone quarterback has made huge strides from his freshman year, and the Louisville offense still isn't at full strength. The third -- and biggest -- of its running back triumvirate, Dominique Brown, has missed both games with a knee injury. Last week's power ranking: 1. Next up: vs. North Carolina, Saturday, 3:30 p.m. ET (ABC)
2. South Florida (2-0): The Bulls looked dead to rights out west against Nevada, but senior quarterback B.J. Daniels led his team on a furious comeback, culminating with a touchdown pass to Andre Davis. Though the win was thrilling, USF looked vulnerable, especially defensively, allowing 549 yards of offense to Nevada. The Bulls will face pretty much the polar opposite of the Wolf Pack Thursday night, when Rutgers brings a stout defense and mediocre offense to Tampa. Last week's power ranking: 2. Next up: vs. Rutgers, Thursday, 7:30 p.m. ET (ESPN)
3. Cincinnati (1-0): The Bearcats were impressive in their opener Thursday, but let's be careful anointing anyone after beating Pittsburgh, which is in a tail-spin. There were several positives, though, especially defensively and in the run game. New quarterback Munchie Legaux was fine, though he did look shaky on some throws. He'll need to iron that out if Cincy wants another share of the Big East championship. Last week's power ranking: 4. Next up: vs. Delaware State, Saturday, 7 p.m. ET (ESPN3)
4. Rutgers (2-0): Though first-year coach Kyle Flood has won his first two games, the Scarlet Knights have not been impressive offensively behind sophomore quarterback Gary Nova, who won the starting job over the summer. Rutgers' schedule gets markedly more difficult moving forward, beginning Thursday with South Florida. Last week's power ranking: 3. Next up: at South Florida, Thursday, 7:30 p.m. ET (ESPN)
5. Connecticut (1-1): There is a precipitous drop between the top four and these bottom four. The Huskies, who showed very little offensive promise in Saturday's 10-7 loss to North Carolina State, do have a solid defense with several playmakers. However, without first-year quarterback Chandler Whitmer taking some pressure off running back Lyle McCombs, the UConn offense will struggle to put points on the board. Last week's power ranking: 5. Next up: at Maryland, Saturday, 12:30 p.m. ET, (ESPN3)
6. Syracuse (0-2): The Orange have lost their first two, sure, but they've been competitive against solid competition. One problem they're having is falling too far behind and coming up short with their rally. They fell behind Northwestern 35-13 in their opener, and No. 2 Southern California held a 35-16 lead before Syracuse woke up. Last week's power ranking: 6. Next up: vs. Stony Brook, Saturday, 4 p.m. ET (ESPN3)
7. Temple (1-1): The Temple defense was soft against Maryland on Saturday, giving up 36 points to a Terrapin team that could only manage a meager touchdown in its opener against William and Mary. Everyone assumed the Owls' transition to the Big East would be difficult, but this loss was not expected, especially after Temple went to Maryland last season and blew out the Terps. Last week's power ranking: 7. Next up: at Penn State, Saturday, Sept. 22.
8. Pittsburgh (0-2): There's not much to say about this team under first-year head coach Paul Chryst that hasn't already been said. At this point, it's not even about winning. Pitt has struggled to execute on both sides of the ball, and its failed to be competitive in either of its losses. A strong showing against Virginia Tech would go a long way in boosting this team's confidence. Good luck with that. Last week's power ranking: 8. Next up: vs. Virginia Tech, Saturday, noon ET (ESPNU)
For more up-to-the-minute news and analysis on the Big East, follow bloggers Evan Hilbert and Matt Rybaltowski @CBSBigEast.