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With BCS bowl in sight, Rutgers visits West Virginia

Nov 28, 2006 - 9:32 PM No. 13 Rutgers (10-1) at No. 15 West Virginia (9-2), 7:45 pm EST

MORGANTOWN, West Virginia (Ticker) - Surprising Rutgers controls its own BCS destiny. West Virginia needs some help.

The 13th-ranked Scarlet Knights can secure a spot in one of the lucrative BCS games but need to beat the speedy 15th-ranked Mountaineers on the road in a key Big East Conference matchup Saturday.

Entering the weekend, Rutgers (10-1, 5-1 Big East) is tied atop the conference standings with No. 6 Louisville, which hosts middling Connecticut. By virtue of a 28-25 win over Louisville on November 9, the Scarlet Knights would win a head-to-head tiebreaker were both schools to win Saturday.

The Scarlet Knights, who never have won the Big East, rebounded from a loss at South Florida with a 38-7 home romp over Syracuse last weekend.

Senior Brian Leonard rushed for 106 yards and two touchdowns and star sophomore Ray Rice ran for 107 yards and a score for Rutgers, which scored the game's first 31 points.

West Virginia (9-2, 4-2) still has a shot at the conference crown, but it would have to beat Rutgers, have Louisville lose to UConn and finish ahead of the Scarlet Knights and Cardinals in the final BCS standings Sunday.

However, the Mountaineers have won 11 straight meetings with the Scarlet Knights overall and are 14-0 all-time against Rutgers in Morgantown.

The Mountaineers are coming off a stunning 24-19 home loss to South Florida in which sensational sophomores Steve Slaton and Pat White were held to a combined 60 rushing yards. The duo gained 435 yards on the ground one week earlier in West Virginia's "Backyard Brawl" win over Pittsburgh.

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