Rutgers-Pittsburgh Preview Capsule

The Associated Press Published:

No. 21 Rutgers (9-1, 5-0 Big East) at Pitt (4-6, 1-4), 12 p.m. (ESPN2)

Line: Pitt by 2

Series Record: Pitt leads 21-8.

WHAT'S AT STAKE: The Scarlet Knights can clinch at least a share of the Big East title with a win and can clinch it outright -- and the Bowl Championship Series berth that comes with it -- if No. 19 Louisville loses to Connecticut. The Panthers need to win this week and next week at South Florida to become bowl eligible.

KEY MATCHUP: Rutgers front seven vs. Pittsburgh RBs Ray Graham and Rushel Shell. The Scarlet Knights boast the nation's 14th ranked defense and are 12th in the country against the run, allowing opponents to rush for 108 yards per game. Graham and Shell are one of the league's most potent one-two combinations at running back, but when they can't find room, the Panthers are in trouble. .

PLAYERS TO WATCH

Rutgers: LB Khaseem Greene. The senior linebacker is on the verge of winning his second straight Big East Defensive Player of the Year award. He leads the conference in tackles, solo tackles and forced fumbles and appears to be getting stronger as the season has gone on, spearheading a defense that has been lights out save for a bizarre loss against Kent State last month that derailed the Scarlet Knights' hopes for a perfect season.

Pitt: QB Tino Sunseri. Very few quarterbacks have endured the kind of withering criticism Sunseri has absorbed over the last four years. He's been the touchstone for a program that's had more than its share of turmoil. He's managed to hold onto the job and with two solid games to finish his career could become the second all-time leading passer in school history, ahead of Dan Marino and Tyler Palko. He's in the midst of his finest season and his 159.14 quarterback rating is second in the conference and 12th in the nation.

FACTS & FIGURES: A victory would give the Scarlet Knights 10 wins for just the third time in the program's 143 seasons ... The Scarlet Knights are 5-0 on the road this season, one more win would set a school record for road victories in a season ... Rutgers beat the Panthers 34-10 last season ... This is the final meeting between the two schools for the foreseeable future. Pitt is heading to the ACC next fall and Rutgers announced on Tuesday it is joining the Big Ten in 2014 ... Rutgers' Greene and Pitt's Graham are brothers ... Pitt's seven turnovers are the fewest in the Big East, while Rutgers leads the conference in turnovers forced with 27 ... Sunseri has gone 206 pass attempts without an interception, the second-longest streak in the country ... The Scarlet Knights are fourth in the country in scoring defense, allowing just 12.4 points per game.