THIS is the Brendon Kay that the Cincinnati fans want to see. One week after struggling through the air against Rutgers, Kay got back to the basics against USF. The senior completed 17 of 27 passes for 178 yards and one touchdown. While the numbers weren't earth-shattering, he played turnover free football and managed the game like a veteran quarterback is supposed to. Kay's game isn't overly flashy, but he possesses solid arm strength and accuracy when given time to throw. With two games remaining in the season, including the bowl game, Kay has a chance to build on this performance and end the season with three straight wins.
BearcatInsider grade: B+
George Winn is a beast. If Winn isn't a first team all Big-East running back, there is something wrong with the voting process. The senior halfback finished his senior night game with 119 yards on 21 carries and two touchdowns. Those numbers put him well over 1,000 yards and 10 touchdowns for the season. However, Winn's contributions go far beyond statistics. He has stepped up into the hole created by Isiah Pead's graduation and performed better than anyone could have asked. Replacing an NFL draft pick like Pead is not small task, and Winn has taken that responsibility head on. When I spoke to George in the preseason, he talked about his improved fitness and the responsibility he had as a number one back. It's been a pleasure to see his words translate into on-field results. Not to be forgotten, Ralph Abernathy IV had a solid game as well, finishing with 18 yards on six carries. While not getting the amount of touches he desired, this was Winn's night. Abernathy will have his time, we can be sure of that.
BearcatInsider grade: A
Wide Receivers/Tight Ends
This was a senior themed night for the wide receivers. Led by Travis Kelce, Kenbrell Thompkins and Damon Julian, this group of Bearcats combined for 13 catches, 137 yards on a touchdown. Kelce had the lone receiving touchdown of the group, and let the trio in receptions and receiving yards at seven and 58 respectively. The Cincinnati wide receivers have been pretty consistent performers all season. Aside from the breakout performance of Thompkins in the Virginia Tech game, this group has put together nearly identical numbers every game since then. While no receiver has stood out as the go-to guy this season, Kelce has really come on the past few games, becoming Brendon Kay's favorite target and most consistent performer. Going forward, I expect to see much of the same from this group.
BearcatInsider grade: B