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Know Your Foes: UCF’s Opponents After Week Two

In which we see how UCF’s past and future opponents fared: the Hurricane Irma Cancellation Edition. 

NCAA Football: Maryland at Central Florida Reinhold Matay-USA TODAY Sports

Hurricane Irma denied Knights fans what would have been an exciting cross-divisional game against AAC west contender Memphis. And we were likewise denied the opportunity to see divisional foes USF and UConn play. The Georgia Tech game scheduled for Saturday has also been cancelled.

Our former and future opponents, in schedule order:

FIU Panthers (1-1 Overall, 0-0 Conference USA)

Good for the Panthers who, like FAU, managed to be a Florida school to squeeze some football in despite Hurricane Irma. FIU pulled this off by moving their home opener against Alcorn State to Legion Field in Birmingham.

The Panthers won 17-10. So UCF’s week one beatdown wasn’t much of a quality win. In fairness to FIU, this game shouldn’t have been quite so close. FIU dominated the box score. But FIU squandered some scoring opportunities - WR Thomas Owens (he had the 75 yard TD catch against the Knights) fumbled on the Alcorn State 2 yard line and Jose Borreagles missed a field goal.

Memphis Tigers (1-0 Overall, 0-0 AAC)

Wish the timing for this game had worked out; I predicted a good game and a Knights win. In a bizarre sequence of events, the game was moved up to Friday, and then canceled late Thursday night/early Friday morning after the Tigers’ plane had landed in Florida.

Rescheduling would be difficulty and – in my estimate – highly unlikely to occur. The Tigers and the Knights don’t share a bye week. There might be a slim chance on September 30 when Memphis plays at Georgia State and UCF hosts Maine. Probably too many moving parts to make this work.

Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets (1-1 Overall, 0-0 ACC)

Oh, our scheduled home game against GT isn’t happening either.

That certainly seems a valid reason to not host the game at Spectrum Stadium. But UCF has not provided an explanation of why the game could not be moved to another site, or whether that was explored as an option.

We’ll drop Memphis and Georgia Tech off this list next time, because it’s hard to imagine these getting rescheduled.

Maryland Terrapins (2-0 Overall, 0-0 Big Ten)

Cruised past Towson 63-17. The outcome was never in doubt here and the Terps had a number of explosive plays. This is a dangerous team.

Maine Black Bears (1-1 Overall, 0-1 Colonial Athletic Association)

Beat Bryant 60-12. The Black Bears dominated.

Cincinnati Bearcats (1-1 Overall, 0-0 AAC)

Played a better than expected game against #8 Michigan before losing 36-14. It was still an ugly performance by Cincinnati QB Hayden Moore who completed a mere 15-of-40 pass attempts for 132 yards. He also tossed two picks.

That the game was close for so long had more to do with Michigan’s sloppiness than Cincinnati’s successes.

ECU Pirates (0-2 Overall, 0-0 AAC)

The Pirates followed up a loss to an FCS program by failing totally against the West Virginia Mountaineers. This game was 49-3 at the half and ended up 56-20. ECU is likely the worst team in the AAC.

Navy Midshipmen (2-0 Overall, 1-0 AAC)

Edged Tulane 23-21. Navy was sloppy, with quarterback Zach Abey (who shared last week AAC offensive player of the week honors with UCF’s McKenzie Milton) fumbling twice and throwing an interception. Tulane played most of the game with backup quarterback Johnathan Brantley following an injury to starter Jonathan Banks.

SMU Mustangs (2-0 Overall, 0-0 AAC)

Beat the University of North Texas 54-32. But UNT’s passing attack managed to shred the Mustangs. UNT quarterback Mason Fine racked up 424 yards passing and three touchdowns. The SMU pass defense is suspect.

UConn Huskies (1-0 Overall, 0-0 AAC)

Didn’t get to play USF because of travel concerns arising from Irma.

Temple Owls (1-1 Overall, 0-0 AAC)

Could have easily lost against the Villanova Wildcats, but ultimately prevailed 16-13. Frankly, the Owls were bailed out by the Wildcats’ poor execution. This is not a promising Temple team.

USF Bulls (2-0 Overall, 0-0 AAC)

Our companions in Hurricane woe.