Dr. Blackwell's BLOG

Tuesday, October 30, 2018

UCF Knights Ranked #12 in CFP, Ready for Temple After Bye

Filed under: UCF Sports — Dr. Christopher Blackwell @ 22:55

The UCF Knights (7-0; 4-0 AAC) took a week off after their 37-10 drubbing of East Carolina (2-5; 0-4 AAC) on October 20th to get some much needed rest and relaxation. Darriel Mack Jr. stepped in for Heisman Trophy hopeful McKenzie Milton and rushed for 120 yards and a touchdown, and UCF forced five turnovers in beating ECU 37-10 for its 20th straight victory. Nate Evans returned a fumble 94 yards for a momentum-changing touchdown with 10:07 left, Greg McCrae added a 74-yard TD run and the Knights turned all those takeaways into 24 points.

UCF — which was outgained 496-427 — went up 20-3 by scoring on four consecutive possessions in the second quarter, then made it a full-fledged rout with those late big plays. Receiver Quadry Jones threw a 42-yard touchdown pass to Adrian Killins on a trick play, and Matthew Wright kicked three field goals for the Knights. With Milton sitting this one out while in full uniform from the sideline, Mack was 12 of 20 for 69 yards but was more dangerous with his legs, rushing 7 yards for an early touchdown.

Freshman Holton Ahlers was 29 of 53 for 406 yards with a 29-yard touchdown pass to Trevon Brown, and added 69 yards rushing in his first start. But his fumble while attempting a jump pass inside the 5-yard line was returned by Evans for the game-sealing score. The Pirates have lost three straight and four of five. Jake Verity put ECU up 3-0 midway through the first with a 34-yard field goal. ECU was on the verge of making this a one-score game with 10 minutes left before Evans’ fumble return.

UCF also learned Tuesday they are ranked #12 in the first set of rankings released by the College Football Playoff Committee as they make final preparations for their big Thursday night home game against the Temple Owls (5-3; 4-0 AAC). Kickoff for that matchup is set for 7:30pm; and the game will be nationally-televised on ESPN. Watch highlights from UCF’s 37-10 victory over ECU, courtesy of the American Athletic Conference Digital Network below:

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