Week 2 of the college football season has quickly arrived upon us. Every state school is in action with one in-state battle.
The USF Bulls travel to Atlanta to take on Georgia Tech Saturday afternoon. The Bulls are coming off an embarrassing performance against Wisconsin. After putting up 0 points last week, a lot of pressure will be on the offense. Coach Charlie Strong needs a win today to put out some of the flames that are on the hot seat of his. Tech ran all over the Bulls last season, and even with the new coaching staff in place, will they do it again.
Florida State takes on ULM in a definite must win in Tallahassee. Coach Willie Taggart is coming off another rough loss this time bowing a lead to Boise State. The offense looked much improved, but a lack of energy and good football in the second half was the Noles demise. Last week the Noles got gashed on the ground and ULM running back Josh Johnson is coming off a 173-yard game in week one. In the end, the Noles should take care of business as a -22.5 point favorite.
The Miami Hurricanes travel to Chapel Hill for the first true road game of the season Saturday night. Freshman QB Jarren Williams will get another tough test, but two weeks removed from the Florida loss expect to see a QB that learned from those sacks. The Heels are entering Mack Browns first season back in the program and are coming off a come from behind victory last week VS. South Carolina. With both teams starting freshman QBs defense will play a critical role in this game which happens to be a specialty of Many Diaz.
The Florida Gators will host UT-Martin one of two lower-division games on the schedule. The Gators are 2 weeks removed from the win over the Canes and will look to see a different offense. Coach Dan Mullen and the rest of the staff will want to see an improved Felipe Franks with fewer mistakes. As 45-point favorites at home in the Swamp, expect to see back up QB Emory Jones get action, as well as, the rest of the backups.
FIU will host Western Kentucky in the home opener and first C-USA game for the Panthers. After falling opening night to Tulane, expect James Morgan and company to take care of business tonight. WKU is coming off a week one loss to Central Arkansas.
The UCF Knights will travel south to take on in-state opponent FAU. Last week the Knights rolled over FAMU with no hiccup. The Owls are coming off a loss to Ohio State in Columbus. The Knights used both QBs last week and are expected to do it again tonight. FAU’s defense played a much better second half last week after giving up 28 in the first quarter, as the Owls held the Buckeyes to just 17 the rest of the way.
The game is expected to be the second-ever sell-out at FAU Stadium and will be a wild in state atmosphere against the #18 Knights.
Excitement is certainly in the air the question is: can the Owls pull off one of, if not the, biggest upset in school history?
USF and UCF got American Conference 2020 schedules Tuesday
On Tuesday afternoon the American Athletic Conference made official is 2020 football dates for opponents for its conference members. And, that means UCF and USF got to look for the first time at their full conference slates and when they are playing whom.
First for the Knights, they learned that they will open year three of coach Josh Heupel’s conference play on Thursday night September 24th at East Carolina. It is one of three stand-alone weeknight(day) games UCF has on their schedule.
The next one will be Friday night October 16th, as UCF travels to play the Memphis Tigers. That’s a team that the Knights defeated for two Conference Championship Game victories in 2017 and 18.
— American Football (@American_FB) February 18, 2020
UCF will also play a traditional “War on I-4” game with the rival Bulls on the Friday after Thanksgiving November 27th. This will be the fourth straight year of playing on “Black Friday.”
As for the Knights other part of the league schedule, they will have their AAC home opener with Tulsa on Saturday October 3rd and then, finish the slate with two huge home matchups with Temple Saturday November 14th followed by Cincinnati at Spectrum Stadium the following week.
For the Bulls, who welcome first year coach Jeff Scott in 2020, they will only have two standalone appearances in conference play. Those will be a Friday night home game October 23rd with Tulsa and then, the previously mentioned final rivalry game with UCF on Friday November 27th.
The Bulls first conference game of the season will be at Cincinnati on October 3rd, while the home opener is East Carolina the following week at Raymond James Stadium.
USF has a tough road slate beginning at Temple on October 17th and then, after the Friday night home game with Tulsa, playing at Memphis November 7th and at Houston November 14th.
The conference is playing 2020 with only 11 members, as UConn has departed and gone back to the Big East. This will also be the first time that the AAC doesn’t play a two six team division format and will instead take the top two ranked teams in conference play for it’s December Championship Game.
Speedy former UCF RB Killins looks to impress at Shrine Bowl
One-player eager to start showcasing himself Saturday afternoon in the pre-draft process in St Petersburg is former UCF speedster RB, Adrian Killins.
Killins ,who just finished four years of highlight runs and touchdowns for the the Knights will participate in the East-West Shrine Bowl.
— East-West Shrine Bowl (@ShrineBowl) December 2, 2019
Killins is generously listed at 5’9 and 165 lb. and came UCF without much fanfare from Daytona Mainland High School. However, he had been an explosive player on the football gridiron, and he was also a former two time 3A State 200m track champion before coming to Orlando.
Once at UCF in 2016, Killins immediately showed off his explosiveness and moniker of “fastest player in college football” with a 100-yard kickoff return at ECU and an 87 yard touchdown run at “the Big House” in Ann Arbor against Michigan.
His best season was his sophomore year, when he was named First Team All American Athletic Conference RB, as he rushed for 790 yards and 10 touchdowns to lead UCF. He showed versatility and caught another additional 25 passes for 169 yards.
He also set a UCF record for longest play from scrimmage that still stands, in the UCF regular season win over Memphis, as he took a handoff and the looked like a missle racing down the sideline:
Longest run in @UCF_Football history ✔️
Longest run in @American_FB history ✔️
2nd-longest in NCAA this year ✔️
— UCF Football (@UCF_Football) October 1, 2017
Killins helped the Knights experience their greatest season ever at 13 – 0 with not only a thrilling double-overtime conference title game rematch win over the Tigers, but a New Year’s Day upset of SEC Powerhouse Auburn in the Peach Bowl for the perfect season.
His next two years under Josh Heupel and his new coaching staff were not as spectacular. But, he still he would make the occasional explosive run and finished his career with over 1,700 yards rushing and 25 touchdowns.
He did leave a final impression with his 115 yards and 1 TD in the regular season finale with USF.
Now, he knows that with his smaller size, even with blazing speed, he will be challenged to stick on an NFL roster, and another way might be as a kick returner. Killins left UCF with a career 21.8 avg on 47 returns as a Knight.
He will likely need to show that part of his game to help him get a realistic shot at the next level. And, we wait to see if there will be explosive plays from him Saturday.