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Big East football standings 2012: Cincinnati, Louisville stay unbeaten

There are still three unbeaten teams on top of the Big East after Cincinnati improved its record to 3-0 with a win over formerly ranked Virginia Tech. Big East play essentially gets underway this weekend, as three conference matchups are on the docket.

Jonathan Ernst - Getty Images

Three out of four Big East teams in action earned wins in the last week of league-wide non-conference play, with two teams putting unbeaten records to the test and coming away unscathed.

Cincinnati had the win of the weekend in the Big East, facing off against Virginia Tech. Although the Hokies were supposedly the cream of the ACC crop entering the year, they've dropped a pair of games in as many tries against Big East teams in Pittsburgh and Cincinnati, leaving them 3-2 and well out of any polls.

Louisville also remained among the ranks of the unbeaten, although they almost lost a soggy matchup to an 0-3 Southern Miss team, trailing 17-12 at the half but coming away with the 21-17 victory. UConn bounced back from a loss to Western Michigan by beating their MAC counterpart, Buffalo, 24-17, while South Florida lost its third straight despite putting up a fight on the road against No. 4 Florida State.

That leaves the Big East standings looking like this:

Big East Conference Standings

(updated 9.30.2012 at 2:51 AM CDT)

Conference play begins in earnest this week, with Rutgers - now ranked No. 22 - hosting Connecticut. South Flordia and Temple will square off, as will Syracuse and Pittsburgh, in a pair of battles between teams searching for respectability. Cincinnati is the only team playing out of the conference, as they try to go 4-0 with a home game against Miami (Ohio).

The three undefeated teams will try to put even more of a cushion between themselves and the rest of the conference over the next few weeks, as the battle for a conference title appears to already have only three contenders.