What We Learned Against USF

InsideKnights.com editor-in-chief Charlie Bernstein looks back to the keys to the game for UCF and what actually happened.

Five most important things for UCF:

1. Get started early. After the Knights fell down 7-0 early, Joe Burnett returned the ensuing kickoff 91 yards for a touchdown. The Knights were able to keep their home crowd in the game and were deadlocked at 10 at the half.

2. Contain Matt Grothe. The Bulls star quarterback was fantastic on this day, as he threw for 346 yards and ran for 54. Grothe accounted for three touchdowns through the air, and picked up several first downs with his legs.

3. Shut out George Selvie. Knights left tackle Patrick Brown did a fantastic job on the All-American defensive end, as he held him to just five tackles and no sacks.

4. Make it a sloppy, ugly game. The Knights weren't able to accomplish this as Matt Grothe aired it out, and the UCF running game was all but non-existent. The Knights finished with just 76 yards rushing on just 28 carries.

5. Relish the opportunity. Although the Knights came out on the short end of the stick, they played with much heart, as they didn't give up despite being down two touchdowns.


What to look for:

1. Look for an energized Bright House Networks Stadium crowd. The UCF fans showed up and were rockin' the house as they set a new Bright House Stadium attendance record as 46,805 got their money's worth.

2. Look for 4+ turnovers. There wasn't as many turnovers as we thought, as Matt Grothe accounted for the only two miscues of the game. If you factor in the 148 penalty yards for UCF, there was plenty of mistakes.

3. Look for special teams to make a big difference. Special teams single-handedly kept the Knights in the game, as Joe Burnett was a difference maker, averaging 35 yards per kickoff return and better than 23 yards per punt return.

4. Look for some trick plays by the Knights. Coach O'Leary kept it close to the vest and the Knights didn't try any trickery.

5. Look for the winning team to have a 2:1 run to pass ratio. The Bulls were actually pretty balanced, as they ran the ball 44 times and threw it just 41.


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