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Today's Factor Five Five Factor Preview dives headfirst into the fine city of Tampa, Florida, where Rutgers travels to play USF and everyone will probably end up with an infected body piercing. The Scarlet Knights are 2-0 after beating Tulane and Howard and yes Tulane Howard would be a good name for a character in your steampunk knockoff of Gone With The Wind. The Bulls are also undefeated after scoring the go-ahead touchdown with 38 seconds left to beat Nevada last weekend. You made it out of Reno alive, Skip Holtz, and that's all that matters, despite what the laws on homicide may say.

Factor Five Five Factor Preview Bisque has five ingredients: Nebulous Statistical Comparisons of Dubious Validity, Mascot, Aura, Names, and Grudges/Scores to Settle/Sheer Cussedness. Be sure to add salt and reruns of JAG to taste.

NEBULOUS STATISTICAL COMPARISONS OF DUBIOUS VALIDITY. Rutgers is sitting at third in the nation with 21 tackles for loss accounted for by the defense. South Florida's offense, on the other hand, ranks 16th through week two in tackles for loss allowed, with 6. I think the outcome here is clear: while Rutgers will be swarming in the USF backfield, incompetence suggesting almost total inattention by the referees will lead to several sacks where the ball is spotted as a four yard gain.

Advantage: USF


MASCOT. Rocky The Bull represents South Florida, and just look at this face. It's a mixture of confusing and competing emotions.


The furrowed brow suggests anger or perhaps defensiveness, but the smile reads as "insane guy who intentionally drinks too much at the airport to get in fights." The nostrils are not flared but merely eroded from years of substance abuse. The left eye reads as intense, perhaps even obsessed. The right eye is glass and the original was lost in a food court incident which cannot be discussed pursuant to the terms of a personal injury settlement.

Rutgers counters with The Scarlet Knight, who appears to be preparing to traumatize these cheerleaders sexually in this photo.


Even in Tampa, uninvited genital exposure is not okay, Rutgers!

Advantage: USF


AURA. I can say with absolute confidence that both Rutgers and South Florida have at least one full-time female student named "Aura." Rutgers Aura is a C student barely on track to get her degree in Political Science. She has been banned from using New Jersey Transit after repeated attempts to sell low-grade marijuana to commuters. (Her mistake? Wearing a custom t-shirt that referred to "The Baking of Pelham 123.") Rutgers Aura dreams of finding love and a mail truck with the keys left in it, and not in that order.

USF Aura, on the other hand, is a dead woman with a fake student record created only for purposes of tax fraud. USF Aura will be the 2017 salutatorian.

Advantage: Rutgers




Jackson Cannon
Edsel Caprice
Quinterrius Eatmonn
Brynjar Gudmundsson
Thor Jozwiak


Andre Civil
Gareef Glashen
Dallas Hendrikson
D.C. Jefferson
J.T. Tartacoff
Jorge Vicioso

This is something of a close battle until you get to BRYNJAR GUDMUNDSSON AND THOR JOZWIAK. Holy shit, USF, did you just steal your roster from the awful action heroes I dreamed up as an eleven year old? BRYNJAR IS ARMED WITH BAZOOKA SLEEVES AND HAS KATANA BOOTS BUT THOR WIELDS THE TRIPLE LASER TRIDENT AND HAS ARMOR MADE OF SOLAR CRYSTAL SPIKES.

(eats eight packets of toaster strudel frosting)

Advantage: USF


GRUDGES/SCORES TO SETTLE/SHEER CUSSEDNESS. Rutgers famously went into Tampa and took down a then-ranked #2 USF in October of 2007. (These were strange times, considering that USF, Boston College, Cal, and even Kansas would at some point be ranked second in the AP Poll.) The Bulls have not done much to avenge that loss in subsequent years, going 1-3 against the Knights from 2008 to the present. One would think that gives them the edge in this category.

But then Tampa had to go and steal Greg Schiano. CAPTAIN FEAR WE WILL NOT PAY YOUR RANSOM YOU GIVE RUTGERS BACK ITS COACH OR THERE WILL BE HELL TO PAY YOU HEAR ME? (He's already dead and you know it, because this is Florida.)

Advantage: Rutgers


SUMMARY: 3-2, ADVANTAGE USF. We predict a narrow win for the Bulls. Rutgers fans in attendance are invited to drown their sorrows at one of the following three best bars in Tampa: Chili's, Mr. Dunderbak's, or the other Chili's. The Spike Factor is 1-0 on the year, and yes, that is much better than Auburn's record, now that you mention it!