Start Time: Saturday, October 21 at 3:30 p.m. ET.
TV: CBS Sports Network
Radio: FM 96.9/AM 740 The Game
Live stats: ucfknights.co/FBLiveStats17
Location: Navy Marine Corps Memorial Stadium, Annapolis, MD
The Series: This will be the first meeting in history between UCF and Navy.
Betting Line: The line opened at UCF -6.5 and has now moved to UCF -8.
The UCF (5-0) vs Navy (5-1) matchup this Saturday will feature two offenses that are no strangers to the end zone. The highest scoring offense in the nation will square off against the most prolific rushing offense in the nation in what might be the best American Conference game so far this season. The Knights are coming off a 63-21 victory against East Carolina and Navy is looking to move on from a tough 30-27 loss to now #25 Memphis. Memphis replaced Navy at #25 in the AP Poll after handing them their first loss.
Navy’s run-heavy triple-option offense is averaging 479 yards per game and 35.5 points per game through the first half of the season. Despite finding success on the offensive side of the ball, their defense has struggled at times allowing 32 points to 2-6 Cincinnati and 45 points to 2-4 Air Force. Turnovers have also been an issue for the Midshipmen as they’ve coughed up the ball 11 times this season, with 5 of those coming last week against Memphis.
This will be the first time UCF will face off against a triple-option offense in the Coach Frost era. The Knights have done a good job against the run this season, allowing only 110.2 rushing yards per game and only 4 scores on the ground. The UCF front seven will be in for their biggest test of the season and will have to fix some mistakes that allowed a few big runs last week from East Carolina.
UCF may have an advantage in game-planning considering Scott Frost ran the triple-option during his time as quarterback for the Nebraska Cornhuskers. Frost was able to find success with the scheme, ultimately leading Nebraska to a share of the 1997 National Championship.
Despite being Navy’s homecoming game, UCF is currently favorited by 8 points. ESPN’s Football Power Index gives the Knights a 74% chance to win. The Knights look to improve to 6-0 on the road this Saturday in this clash of two of the American’s best. Tune in to CBSSN at 3:30 to catch the action.
SCORE PREDICTION: 44-27, UCF