clock menu more-arrow no yes mobile

Filed under:

UCF vs. #3 Cincinnati: Preview, How to Watch, TV, Predictions, and Keys to the Game

The Knights aim for the biggest upset in school history at the Bearcats

Derek Warden

The UCF Knights (3-2) hit the road for a showdown with the reigning AAC champions, the number three ranked Cincinnati Bearcats (5-0).

Let’s get ready:

Game Day Guide

When: 12 p.m. ET

Where: Nippert Stadium

Weather: Sunny, with a high near 62. Northwest wind 11 to 14 mph.

Line: Cincinnati -21.5 (76% of the money), Over/under 56 (OddsShark)

How to Watch


Crew: Bob Wischusen and Dan Orlovsky


All-time: Series tied 3-3.

Last Meeting: 2020 - Cincinnati 36, UCF 33

Keys to the Game

When UCF Has the Ball

UCF is going to need to establish the run in order to open up the pass. If Johnny Richardson can get to the outside, he can cause a lot of damage. Isaiah Bowser is suited up for the Knights and looks to be ready to play. The question is how much will he be used? Cincinnati has Sauce Gardner, who might be the best cornerback in college football, so Mikey Keene will need to be aware of where he is on the field. UCF will have more success utilizing shorter passes than trying to go downfield with the Knights still being without Jaylon Robinson.

UCF’s Key Players to Watch

  • #16 QB Mikey Keene — 43/68 427 yards, 3 touchdowns, 2 interceptions
  • #25 RB Johnny Richardson — 42 attempts, 297 yards, 1 touchdown, 6 receptions 83 yards

Cincinnati’s Key Players to Watch

  • #1 DB Ahmed “Sauce” Gardner — 9 tackles, 2 interceptions, 2 pass deflections
  • #20 LB Deshawn Pace — 40 tackles, 3.5 tackles for loss, 0.5 sacks, 2 interceptions

When Cincinnati Has the Ball

Desmond Ridder is a dual threat quarterback that can easily tuck the ball and run when things don’t work as planned. With that said, he has been focusing on passing this year and will continue to do so. Jerome Ford has done an excellent job at running back, which has allowed Ridder to not have to do as much. When Ridder throws the ball, his accuracy is still a bit of a work in progress, but he has made big strides in 2021. He does not make bad decisions often.

Cincinnati’s Key Players to Watch

  • #9 QB Desmond Ridder — 95/145, 1304 yards, 12 touchdowns, 2 interceptions
  • #24 RB Jerome Ford — 82 attempts, 516 yards, 8 touchdowns, 6 receptions, 26 yards

UCF’s Key Players to Watch

  • #30 LB Bryson Armstrong — 45 tackles, 1.5 tackle for loss, 1 pass deflection
  • #15 LB Tatum Bethune — 32 tackles, 1 interception


Listen to our latest podcast as we preview the game:


Get our takes on today’s game in this week’s Roundtable:

Follow Along!

Follow our Twitter List and interact here:

Black & Gold Banneret has affiliate partnerships. These do not influence editorial content, though Vox Media may earn commissions for products purchased via affiliate links.