UCF Tops Rival Florida Bulls in a Barnburner 58-46
By: Izayah Thorb
TAMPA, FL – In a game where on paper you’d think the Knights would lose, they steamrolled the Florida Bulls.
The Knights finished with 69 less total yards, 10 less first downs, a worse 3rd down efficiency, 12 less total plays, 2 more punts and lost the time of possession battle.
While the Knights got off to a sluggish start finding themselves down 7-0 through the middle of the 1st quarter, it didn’t take long for the Knights to show up and show out as they scored 28 unanswered points.
“Guys were excited – we talked about it earlier in the week this is a trophy game, in-state rival, kind of throw records outside the window, and I thought our guys played hard, didn’t always play smart here tonight, but found a way to be on the right side of the scoreboard”, said Coach Heupel on his team’s final win this season.
The final score doesn’t accurately show how much of a beat down this outing was as the Knights were firmly in control as the Bulls added two scores late in the 4th quarter.
In typical shootout fashion, we had a quarterback duel comparable to that of a fireworks show. Both quarterbacks found their rhythm as the two combined for 740 passing yards and 8 TDs.
Gabriel finished with 336 passing yards with 3 TDs in the air, 1 rushing TD and 1 interception. On the other side, Bulls QB Jordan McCloud ended the game with 404 passing yards and 4 TDs.
UCF’s run game was on full display carving up South Florida’s defense. Greg McCrae and Bentavious Thompson being the steady workhorses combined for 240 yards on the ground and 3 TDs.
“I think some of it’s just execution. We were aggressive in the Cincinnati game too, just didn’t connect on some things we were maybe accustomed to connecting on and they are a good defense, at the same time tonight our kids competed, played extremely hard”, said Coach Heupel on the contrast of his team’s play against Cincinnati.
The date UCF now has circled on their calendar is December 20th as they must patiently wait to find out where they’ll be placed in the post season picture.