Backyard Brawl is starting to heat up early
College Football Videos
NEWPORT, R.I. — When West Virginia defensive end Bruce Irvin was asked about the fast-paced, no-huddle offenses he will face this season in games against Cincinnati and Pitt, he acknowledged the Bearcats.
"I guess Cincinnati (will be a challenge)," he said Tuesday during Big East Media Day. "But the other team you mentioned, I won't worry about them."
And the Backyard Brawl starts to heat up — nearly four months before the game.
Is there hate between the teams?
"Pretty much," Irvin said. "You aren't supposed to hate anybody, but I think that's as close to hate you can get, that rivalry. We don't speak to them, and they don't speak to us."
The players were in the same room Monday night during the clambake, and Tuesday at a news conference, they were seated in opposite corners of the room. Pitt's Myles Caragein, Jared Holley, Brandon Lindsey and Mike Shanahan and West Virginia's Irvin, Keith Tandy and Geno Smith never attempted to cross paths.
Caragein, a senior nose tackle, said he and his teammates are trying not to get drawn into a war of words, although he admits to looking the other way when he sees a West Virginia player.
"We have been pretty good about it," he said. "We are trying not to be jerks or arrogant. We respect them. We are not trying to degrade them in any way. We will try to be nice about it."
When told of Irvin's comments, Caragein smiled and said, "That's fine. They can think that all they want, but what matters is what is going to happen on the field."
WVU, Pitt picked 1-2
West Virginia, which has won its past two games against Pitt, was picked No. 1 in the Big East preseason media poll.
After sharing the conference title with Pitt and Connecticut last season, the Mountaineers received 21 of 24 first-place votes, for a total of 188 points. Pitt received two (162).
Graciously, Irvin wasn't gloating over West Virginia's advantage over Pitt.
"I don't think we have an advantage because we won the last two years," Irvin said. "We just made more plays than they did."
"It's fine," Caragein said of the poll. "You don't get a trophy or a ring for it. I would rather be under the radar."Additional Information:
Big East preseason poll
Big East preseason poll as voted upon by 24 media members • three from each Big East team coverage area (first-place votes in parentheses):
Team • Points
1. WVU (21) • 188
2. Pitt (2) • 162
3. S. Florida (1) • 151
4. Syracuse • 98
5. Cincinnati • 96
6. Connecticut • 76
7. Louisville • 60
8. Rutgers • 33
Show commenting policy
TribLive commenting policy
You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.
We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.
While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.
We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers.
We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.
We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.
We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.
We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.
- Reagan shooter Hinckley closer to permanent freedom
- Cole overcomes rough start as Pirates sweep Brewers
- Pirates notebook: GM sticking to plan with Kang
- Monessen man wounded in afternoon shooting
- Steelers won’t be backed into a corner at NFL Draft
- Service marks 20 years since Oklahoma City bombing
- Crosby’s 2 goals lift Penguins past Rangers, even series
- Sutter steps up for Penguins in series-tying victory
- News Alert
- Man beaten, robbed in South Side, police say
- Coming off hill revives Seton Hill University, downtown Greensburg