Central Florida Knights
South Florida Bulls
By Jason Green
While the biggest Game in the Sunshine State this Saturday is Florida vs. Florida State there are 2 other bowl-bound teams facing off in UCF and USF. The Knights will not play in the Conference title Game at 4-3 in AAC play, but they can end the regular season with a winning record and improve their bowl positioning with a W. They had their 2-Game win streak snapped in their last Game and they don’t have a high-powered offense, but rank a solid 27th in the nation in opponents’ points allowed.
The Bulls are tied with Temple for first place in the AAC East Division. However, in losing to them this season they need to win this Game and hope a 3-8 East Carolina team pulls of the upset over Temple for them to get in the Conference title Game. The Bulls have won 3 in a row since that loss to Temple and in that span their offense has been on fire.
USF is 5-2 ATS in their last 7 Games facing UCF.
In UCF’s last Game they lost to a good Tulsa team 35-20, but they were at home and failed to cover the spread being the 1-point favorite.
South Florida won their 3rd in a row with a 35-17 road win over SMU, but in giving 12 points as the favorite they did not cover the spread.
In UCF’s loss to Tulsa they failed to run the ball well and their D gave up 474 yards. QB McKenzie Milton did pass for 233 yards with no INT, but he did not have a TD and he completed less than 50% of his passes. He was also the leading rusher for the Knights in the Game, but that is not saying much since he only had 37 yards on the ground and averaged 3.1 yards per carry.
While the Knights do not have have a great offense they will be up against a South Florida defense that does not rank in the top 100 in the nation in run or pass defense.
I mentioned the Bulls and their less than stellar D and that defense gave up 578 yards in the win over SMU, but they did force two turnovers. They gave up a ton of yards in the air, but on offense has a balanced attack with 195 passing yards and 278 rushing yards.
To beat South Florida, UCF pretty much has to try to contain QB Quinton Flowers, who has passed for nearly 2,400 yards with 22 TD and only 6 INT and is also the team’s leading rusher and ran for 142 yards in the win over SMU.
UCF ranks a respectable 37th in the nation in pass defense, but 60th in run defense.
UCF is 4-0 ATS in their last 4 road Games, 4-1 ATS in their last 5 Games overall, and in their last 6 Games the posted total has gone Under every time.
USF is 9-3-1 ATS in their last 13 home Games, 14-6-1 ATS in their last 21 Games overall, and in their last 9 home Games the posted total has gone Over 8 times.
Bettorsworld Pick – Central Florida +10