|Freshman RB Corvin Lamb had one touch against Syracuse, and it ended up in the end zone. (US Presswire)|
Kickoff: Saturday, noon ET (Big East Network)
Spread: Louisville by 12.5
Watchability: The Cardinals have a tendency to hand fight for a while with lesser opponents, and UConn's defense is nothing to snicker about. In addition, this is a must-win for Louisville. A loss would severely hinder its chance at a BCS berth.
Shining stars: Connecticut -- DE Trevardo Williams. The school's all-time leader in sacks has been rather quiet of late. But he'll be matched up against a pass-happy offense down its starting running back, so Williams will have plenty of opportunities to wreak havoc in the backfield. Trouble is, however, Louisville quarterback Teddy Bridgewater is hard to get under wraps. Louisville -- QB Teddy Bridgewater. Even in a losing effort last time out against Syracuse, Bridgewater was still sensational. The sophomore finished 36 of 49 for 424 yards, three touchdowns, and just one interception, despite the lopsided score. He's as steady as they come, and he can make spectacular plays seem pedestrian.
Who could steal the show: Connecticut -- RB Lyle McCombs. It seems like a distant memory when McCombs was one of the top freshmen in the Big East, rushing for more than 1,100 yards last season. McCombs hasn't been in top form all year -- injuries have slowed him -- but he did have a big game last time out against Pittsburgh, rushing 29 times for 120 yards. The Louisville defense, in addition, is awfully giving to opposing runners, allowing 161 yards per game on the ground. Louisville -- RB Corvin Lamb. The freshman got a touch against Syracuse two weeks ago -- his third of the season -- and he took a screen pass 53 yards for a score. His role this week will expand, especially with starting running back Senorise Perry lost for the season.
You going? Ranking the road trip: Last chance to see the Cards before they head off to Piscataway to face Rutgers in a game that will likely determine the BCS representative from the Big East.
Magic number for Connecticut: 27.5. Defensive end Trevardo Williams has the UConn record for most sacks with 27.5. He'd like to add to that total Saturday against an elusive Teddy Bridgewater.
Magic number for Louisville: 1. With a win Saturday, Louisville will set up a matchup against Rutgers next Thursday for all the marbles in the Big East.
The game comes down to: The start. This is a game that the Cardinals can easily dominate, but they can't allow UConn to hang around. A quick start would bury the Huskies, who would be forced to employ their aerial attack to hang with Louisville, and their aerial attack is... not good.
Prediction: Louisville 31, Connecticut 6
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