After an unwelcomed 13-day layoff, the #16 UCF Knights returned to the field to welcome Lane Kiffin and the Florida Atlantic Owls to town Friday night. Perhaps more importantly, they also welcomed what should be a large national television audience, and along with that, a tremendous opportunity to prove their worth among the nation’s elite […]
After an unwelcomed 13-day layoff, the #16 UCF Knights returned to the field to welcome Lane Kiffin and the Florida Atlantic Owls to town Friday night. Perhaps more importantly, they also welcomed what should be a large national television audience, and along with that, a tremendous opportunity to prove their worth among the nation’s elite teams.
The Knights entered the game attempting to extend the nation’s longest active winning streak to 16 games. A run in which no opponent has proven worthy over the previous fifteen games. Friday, Kiffin’s Owls proved no different.
The energy inside Spectrum Stadium was electric from the start, and when senior middle linebacker, Pat Jasinski, intercepted FAU quarterback Chris Robison on the Owls first possession, the Knights capitalized on a 40-yard, one minute, fifteen second drive to take a 7-0 lead. The 14-point favorites took a 14-0 lead just over four minutes later, when a 12-yard pass from McKenzie Milton found junior wide receiver, Dredrick Snelson.
FAU junior running back and Deerfield Beach native, Devin Singletary, was the lone bright spot for the Owls, rushing for a game-high 131 yards on 25 carries. His two consecutive first half touchdowns were followed by a 32-yard field goal with 1:34 remaining in the first half, capping off a 17-point Owls run which saw UCF on the wrong side of the scoreboard for the first time since the 3rd quarter of the Peach Bowl against Auburn last season.
One minute, three seconds and 78 yards later, the lead was UCF’s again. This time, for good.
Led by the magic of McKenzie Milton’s feet, the Knights used three third quarter touchdowns to overwhelm the Owls. The Heisman candidate finished the game with 387 all-purpose yards and accounted for six touchdowns, which included a few of those pivotal Heismann-esque moments. His three rushing touchdowns marked the first time in his career he’s finished with multiple rushing touchdowns in a single game.
Devin Singletary added a third touchdown to his night in the fourth quarter, bringing his career total to 54, and good enough for second on the NCAA career rushing touchdowns list for players who played in the state of Florida. Singletary trails only Tim Tebow, who finished his career at the University of Florida with 57.
UCF’s defense capitalized on a quite a few FAU turnovers. None bigger than Shawn Burgess-Becker’s 40-yard return for a score off of Robison’s third interception of the night.
Up next for UCF is a visit from the Atlantic Coast Conference’s Pitt Panthers (2-1) next Saturday at Spectrum Stadium. The game will once again also be available nationwide, airing on ESPN2 at 3:30PM ET.