Tale of the Tape: West Virginia-Louisville

Nehlan or Schlellenberger? Huff or Jackson? It's time to compare and contrast two of the less-likely powerhouses in recent college football history, writes Pat Forde.

Updated: November 2, 2006, 10:58 AM ET
By Pat Forde | ESPN.com

West Virginia and Louisville meet Thursday in what might be the biggest game in Big East history, but you know that already. ESPN.com has provided the crucial public service of pushing past the hype to compare and contrast two of the least-likely powerhouses in recent college football history:

Tale of the Tape: West Virginia-Louisville
  West Virginia Louisville
Record 7-0 7-0
BCS Rank 3rd 5th
Points per game 40.9 38.7
Points allowed 12.7 12.6
Yards per game 459 496
Yards per play 7.3 7.4
Sacks 3rd nationally in fewest sacks allowed Leads the nation
Turnover margin 16th nationally 89th nationally
Big East leader in 5 statistical categories 4 statistical categories
Streak 14 straight wins anywhere 15 straight home wins
Kentuckians on roster 1 30
West Virginians on roster 19 0
Floridians on roster 19 24
All-Time record 630-433-5 421-404-7
Fan vice Burning couches Bourbon and gambling
Signature style Pittsnogle's tattoos Pitino's suits
Military rank Major. As in Harris. Colonel. As in Sanders.
Gold medalist Fairmont, W.Va., native Mary Lou Retton Louisville native Muhammad Ali
Program patriarch Don Nehlen Howard Schnellenberger
Former coach who won a title elsewhere Bobby Bowden (at Florida State) Howard Schnellenberger (at Miami)
January bowl games Seven Two
High point Right here, right now Right here, right now
Previous high point 1988 unbeaten regular season 1991 Fiesta Bowl rout of Alabama
Low point Four straight losing seasons in the '70s between Bowden and Nehlen Considered dropping the sport in the early '80s
Neighboring rival Pittsburgh, 75 miles north Kentucky, 75 miles east
1950s athletic icon Jerry West Johnny U
Bad-ass linebacker Sam Huff Tom Jackson
Mouthy cornerback Pacman Jones Frank Minniefield
Heartbreaker vs. the other Blew 20-point lead in 2005 regional final Blew 17-point lead in Morgantown last year
Local hero who starred elsewhere Randy Moss Paul Hornung
Festive drink Moonshine Mint juleps
Don't call 'em Hillbillies Little Brother to Kentucky's Big Brother

Pat Forde is a senior writer for ESPN.com. He can be reached at ESPN4D@aol.com.