NCAA Football – Week 14
The Cincinnati Bearcats and UConn Huskies will finish out their regular season with a meeting in Connecticut this Saturday afternoon. UConn has had a disappointing season, but they are coming off a big upset win over Louisville. Cincinnati has had a good year, but they were upset 10-3 at home by Rutgers two weeks ago. That loss ruined their chances of winning the conference title. Let’s take a look at this Big East matchup.
Cincinnati had Munchie Legeaux under center for most of the year, but the move was made to put Brendon Kay at quarterback a few weeks ago. Legeaux is the more dynamic player, but he also was turning the ball over too often. Kay played well against Temple and USF, but he struggled mightily against Rutgers. Cincinnati relies heavily on its running game. George Winn averages 5.5 yards per carry, and he has over 1,100 yards rushing this year. Five players have at least 23 catches for the Bearcats. The offense has been inconsistent this year, but they averaging 30.7 points per game.
Cincinnati’s defense has been the strength of this team all year. This is a unit that has given up some yards, but they do a great job keeping their opponents out of the end zone. Cincinnati does a good job getting after the quarterback, and they have done a good job forcing turnovers. Opponents are scoring just 17.4 points per game against the Bearcats this year.
UConn hasn’t been able to get much done offensively all season. The Huskies are 120th (out of 124 teams) in the nation in points per game at 17.8 per contest. Quarterback Chandler Whitmer is listed as questionable for this game due to a concussion. If he can’t start, it will be Johnny McEntee under center for the Huskies. The Huskies passing game has been inconsistent this year, but it has been the running game that has completely let them down. Lyle McCombs is a pretty talented back, but the line hasn’t been able to get him any room to run this year. Running game for 92.6 yards per game like UConn has this year puts a ton of pressure on the passing game.
The Huskies defense has kept them in almost every game this year. UConn’s defense is ranked in the top ten in the nation in most of the major categories. In five of their last six games, UConn has given up 20 points or less. Louisville was only able to reach 20 points last week because the game went into triple overtime. The strength of this defense is the front seven. Opponents are rushing for only 100 yards per game against this group. The Huskies are tenth in the nation in total defense.
UConn is 32-15-1 ATS in their last 48 home games. I think the Huskies defense will make this game very close. I like the home underdog with the points in this one.
Cincinnati 17 UConn 16