The Bearcats smoked Alabama A&M 52-10 last Saturday. The starters on offense and defense really only played one full quarter, stated Tuberville during the Tuesday press conference. Gunner Kiel looked crisp as expected, and the receiver corps will clearly be a force for any defense this year. We were particularly impressed with the progress made by Johnny Holton and Alex Chisum from last year. Holton caught the first UC TD of the year, and ended the game with 3 catches for 81 yards and a pair of touchdowns.
Hosey Williams got the nod to start at running back. Tubs later stated Williams started because he is the lone senior. We will in fact see a “running back by committee” this year, but if there is a hot-hand reading the defense, Tubs will keep that halfback in the game. Tion Green played his best game at UC, posting 127 yards on 17 carries with a TD.
Right now UC is playing the three-headed monster (Boone, Green, and Williams) at running back out of necessity. The other backs are either redshirted or recovering from injury for a few more weeks. Deionte Buckley is also sitting out the year on the practice squad, and has already earned one Player of the Week Award.
On Tuesday, Tubs mentioned linebacker Clemente Casseus broke team rules and is suspended. Coach has not decided whether he will play against Temple this Saturday night, which is certainly a concern since Casseus is arguably the best backer in the group. Senior captains defensive lineman Silverberry Mouhon and cornerback Adrian Witty will really need to step-up and coach-up the D on the field this week.
Come early, be loud, and wear white this Saturday night when the Cats take on the Temple Owls at 8 pm. UC will be rocking the all-white helmets, jerseys, pants, and cleats in honor of the white out this week.
Temple of course is coming off of quite possibly the biggest win their football team has ever had, beating Penn State 27-10 for the first time in 74 years! The Owls defense racked up a ridiculous 10 sacks, sending PSU’s future NFL star quarterback home in a body bag. Linebacker Tyler Matakevich is the reigning AAC Defensive Player of the Week.
As we mentioned earlier this year in our preseason predictions, Temple is expected to have the best defensive line and linebacker corps. in the American, and will be able to heavily pressure Gunner. Temple returns all 11 starters on defense.
QB P.J. Walker is more experienced, but still a routine game manager, throwing for 143 yards and zero TDs. The Owls rely mainly on their D and running the rock. Running back Jahad Thomas put up 135 yards and 2 TDS against the Penn State D. Overall, Temple had 21 passes and 43 running plays.
We are sticking with our preseason predictions here. Gunner, the receivers, and the stable of backs will just be too much for Temple to keep up. UC wins 31-14. However, Vegas only favors the Cats by 7, and week 1 showed us that stout Temple defense is for real. By no means is this an easy W whatsoever, but if the Cats can put up over 27 points on offense, they will get the W. The winner of Saturday could very well end up the AAC East champion come December.
By Andy Smith
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