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INSTANT REAX: UCF Lays an Egg at Cincinnati

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Bearcats ride UCF mistakes to 27-24 victory

Central Florida v Cincinnati Photo by Joe Robbins/Getty Images

Ain’t no sugarcoating it: This sucked.

Turnovers, mistakes and a damn good Cincinnati defensive game plan spelled defeat for the UCF Knights in Nippert Stadium, 27-24. It’s UCF’s first loss in The American since 2016. And it hurts.

Now at 4-2, UCF has likely seen its New Year’s Six Bowl hopes vanish. The Knights are also 0-1 in the conference, with Cincinnati now having a game in hand in the East Division. It’s going to be an uphill climb for the Knights if they want to get to the conference championship game.

[SIGH] Alright, let’s do this.

Highlights

Reaction

Four Downs

  1. The offense was not good. Dillon Gabriel was 25/46 for 297 yards, one TD, three interceptions and a lost fumble. Credit to the Cincinnati defense, which took away the long ball and forced him to throw underneath. But he was confused multiple times tonight, and when he wasn’t it was the pass rush that caused havoc.
  2. The offensive line was offensive. Even with seven blockers (a TE and a back) on certain passing downs, UCF’s offensive line was thoroughly dominated. The Knights gave up three sacks and had just seven total yards in the third quarter, when Cincinnati made their move.
  3. The Defense was REALLY good. And that’s too bad. They kept the Knights in the game the whole night, only giving up one long TD drive. Desmond Ridder spent most of the evening having to improvise, and outside of one long scamper in the third, Michael Warren had a fairly pedestrian evening.
  4. The red zone was the dead zone. On six trips to the red zone, UCF managed just one TD. The Knights tallied three field goals and got picked twice near the goal line.

Stat of the Game

Knights of the Night

Nate Evans

Nate put up a career-best 17 tackles, 11 solo, in one of the best games he’s ever played.

Gabriel Davis

It was a mixed back for Gabe, who caught a career-high 13 balls for 170 yards, but mostly on slants and short routes. Cincinnati’s defense did not allow him to get behind them.

Next Week

Bye week. Thank God.

Then it’s ECU at home on October 19th.