I feel like we've done a great job covering most of the angles for Cincinnati's game tomorrow night with the South Florida Bulls. I talked to the (student) voice of the Bulls and one of my USF (twitter) friends Senator Giggity. We've got most of the meat off of the USF bone. So let's just get to the preview for the first AAC game in Cincinnati history.
Game Time: 7 pm
Internet: WatchESPN, ESPN3, whatever
Line: Cincinnati -11.5
History: Cincinnati 7-3
In Tampa: Cincinnati 3-2
Winning Streak: 2
Last Meeting: Cincinnati 27-10 November 23, 2012
Helmet Alert: White
Coach: Tommy Tuberville 3-1 (133-78)
Quarterback: Tommy Tuberville pretty much told us that Brendon Kay was the man from here on out and the juggling of quarterbacks has stopped. Kay is 46-68, 576 yards, 4 TDs and 2 INTs for the season. He's both looked amazing and looked awful the past couple of games. Not exactly the consistency you would want from the senior, but he is, was, battling injury. Kay was 17-27, 178, 1 TD last year against the Bulls. He ran for a TD. He's not really run much this year, 44 yards and a score. Most of it came last week.
Running Back: We have a two headed monster at the running back position. Ralph David Abernathy IV has 60 carries, Hosey Williams 51. Williams has 308 yards, RDA 271. Williams has 4 TDs, Abernathy 2. If UC is running the ball, one of them is doing it. Abernathy looked pretty good last week with 90 yards. Williams popped in a score to go along with 78 yards. They are turning into a great combo with Abernathy a little more involved in the passing game with 6 catches for 50 yards.
Receivers: After his huge 11 catch effort two weeks ago, Shaq Washington is the leading receiver with 19 catches. He is second in yards with 162. The leader in yards is Max Morrison with 208. Morrison also leads the receivers in TDs with 2. Chris Moore and Anthony McClung are both averaging 14.4 yards a catch with 1 TD. Moore has 11-158, McClung 10-144. Those four are the only receivers with over 100 yards. Blake Annen has 92 and a score. Mekale McKay has 1 TD and 37 yards on 3 grabs, but seems to have as many drops. And as many times getting laid out by the QBs. Shakim Alonzo has the other receiving touchdown.
Offensive Line: The group of Lefeld-Bujnoch-Bond-Cureton-Ehinger rolls on another week. UC averages 222.8 yards rushing per game. They average 5.1 yards a carry. UC averages 8.2 yards a pass attempt. That adds up to 6.4 yards a play. UC has been whistled for 29 penalties this season, a little more than what we saw under Jones. People have run on USF. I expect UC to do the same.
Defensive Line: Adam Dempsey is the line leader in tackles off of his career high effort last week. He has 10 tackles and 1.5 tackles for loss. Jordan Stepp has 10 tackles, 2.5 for loss and 2 sacks. Mitch Meador has 1.5 tackles for loss and a sack. Silverberry Mouhon has a team high 3.5 sacks as the rush end. Brad Harrah has 2.5 tackles for loss. Marques Aiken and Terrell Hartsfield have both played well despite the stats.
Linebackers: The leading tackler for the Bearcats is Greg Blair with 25. He's the only Cat with over 20. He's got 1.5 tackles for loss, 2 passes broken up and 2 QB hurries. Kind of a quiet start of the year for Blair. Nick Temple has 18 tackles. He leads the team with 6 tackles for loss. He has 2 sacks and an INT. Temple has been the play maker. Jeff Luc has been very solid with 16 tackles of his own. 2.5 of them are for loss, which ties him for 3rd on the team. He's got credit for half a sack. Clemente Casseus has 13 tackles.
Secondary: Arryn Chenault is tied for second on the team with 18 tackles. He got his first INT of the season last week. He has 1 tackle for loss. He's tied for the team lead in passes broken up. Zach Edwards has 12 tackles and 1 INT. Andre Jones has 12 tackles. Adrian Witty has 11 tackles and 1 INT. Deven Drane had his first INT a week ago.
Kicker: The Golden Toe Tony Miliano had a rough go of things last week. He missed from 38 and 36, his first two misses of the season. He is 2-4 on field goals and 19-19 on extra points. All of Miliano's kicks have been from 30-39. His long is 37.
Long Snapper: Kirk Willis
Punter: John Lloyd also punts. He hit a 50 yarder last week. He's averaging 40.4 yards a punt. The stats say he's hit one 50+, but his long in the notes is 45. That's not right. More game note wrongs. In fact, I think all of this could be wrong besides the long last week and the fact Lloyd punts.
Kick Return: Cincinnati has returned only 8 kicks. RDA IV has taken 5 of them for an average of 21.8 yards. Not a lot in the return game.
Punt Return: Shaq Washington is averaging 9.1 yards on 7 punt returns. He has a long of 25. He's the clear choice at returner due to performance and McClung's injury. He's good so I'll take it.
Coach: Willie Taggart 0-4 (16-25)
Quarterback: The Bulls went to Steven Bench last week and he's the starter this week. He is 21-51 for 317 yards, 2 TDs and 2 INTs. None of the Bulls QBs have a completion percentage above 45%. They have 5 INTs against 4 TDs as a team. This is a young, inexperienced position and they are paying the hard way.
Running Back: The bright spot offensively has been Marcus Shaw. The senior has 525 yards and 2 TDs on the year. He's had three 100 yard games, including one last week against Miami. He's the second leading receiver with 5 catches for 47 yards. He's the main weapon offensively. Don't want this guy to beat you.
Receivers: The Bulls have a main target and that's about it. Andre Davis has 14 catches for 191 yards. The rest of the team has 33 for 403. Davis has a receiving touchdown. Stephen Bravo-Brown is second in yards with 87 and has a score. He has the longest reception of the year at 59 yards. The other TDs have gone to Ryan Eppes and Derrick Hopkins.
Offensive Line: The Bulls aren't very good offensive. They are averaging 4.4 yards a play and 270 yards a game. They get 3.8 a rush and 5 yards a pass attempt. They have 10 turnovers. They are 10-54 on 3rd down and 3-11 on 4th. The line has given up 13 sacks. It's been a mountain of bad times.
Defensive Line: The man to watch on the line is Tevin Mims. He's been responsible for 19 tackles at end. The senior has played every game the past couple of year. We saw the line look shaky at times last week, this is a good player. Elkino Watson has 11 tackles, 2 for loss. Luke Sager has 3 tackles for loss to lead the Bulls. Those are the men in the middle. Ryne Giddins has 2 of the 3 USF sacks.
Linebackers: The star of the defense is DeDe Lattimore. He has 40 tackles. 1 of them is for a loss. He has 1 INT and has forced a pair of fumbles. When there is a play made, he will be in on it. You can bet on that tomorrow night. Reshard Cliett is second on the team with 21 stops. He has 2 tackles for loss and has broken up a pair of passes. Nigel Harris has 19 tackles, 1 for loss and has forced a fumble.
Secondary: The leading tackler in the secondary is Mark Joyce. He's made 20 tackles, 1 of which went for a loss. The safety has broken up a pass. Johnny Ward is not listed on the two deep, but has played every game. He's made 14 tackles and picked off a pass. Nate Godwin has 13 tackles, as does Brandon Salinas at corner. The other corner is Kenneth Durden, who has 11 tackles.
Kicker: The Bulls kicker is Marvin Kloss. Like a Kloss. He's 3-4 with a long of 50. His miss was a long one too, somewhere from 40-49. He's hit all 7 extra points.
Long Snapper: David Burdetsky
Holder: Mattias Ciabatti
Punter: Mattias Ciabatti is also the punter. Both teams have punters that hold. He's averaging 39.5 yards a punt with a career long of 53.
Kick Return: Derrick Hopkins takes the kicks an average of 21.3 yards. His long is 38.
Punt Return: The returner Kenneth Durden has only returned 6 punts. He has an 8.2 yard average and a long of 29.
Josh Appel said it earlier, but opponents have scored 6 defensive touchdowns against the Bulls. That's very many.
Tommy Tuberville mentioned there would be changes for the team. None of them show up on the depth chart. He's either playing that one close to the vest or he was saying words.
The USF defensive coordinator is Chuck Bresnahan. He was the defensive coordinator for the Bengals a few years back.
The Bulls stink out loud. UC stunk out loud in their last game. This is almost a repeat of the circumstances we faced against Miami. This is a team that sucks. We know they suck. UC should beat them like a drum. Everyone else has. This is another one where reality not meeting the expectations of a dominant performance would put a sour taste on win number 4.
To that point, I think the Cats show up much better than they did against Miami. It seemed like they thought they could show up and win. They could, albeit in ugly fashion. USF has talent. They have a star running back. They have a QB that we don't know a lot about. This is a place UC has lost. It could be dangerous if they sleep walk. I don't think they will.
Cincinnati 34 USF 9