No. 8 UCF looks to remain unbeaten against South Florida
No. 8 Central Florida (10-0, 7-0 American, No. 9 CFP) at South Florida (7-4, 3-4), Friday, 4:15 p.m. EST (ESPN).
Line: UCF by 14.
Series record: South Florida leads 6-3.
WHAT’S AT STAKE?
UCF aims for its second straight undefeated regular season and to extend the nation’s longest winning streak to 24 games. The Knights climbed three positions in this week’s AP Top 25 and are No. 9 in the latest College Football Playoff rankings, the highest spot ever for a Group of Five team. A win over the archrival Bulls, who’ve lost four straight, will send UCF into the American Athletic Conference title game with a shot at New Year’s Six bowl berth and keep the Knights in the CFP conversation.
QB McKenzie Milton and UCF’s potent offense against a South Florida defense that struggled during the Bulls’ longest skid since 2013. The Knights are sixth in the nation in both total offense (528.9 yards per game) and scoring (43.6). South Florida has yielded 57, 41, 35 and 27 point during its losing streak.
PLAYERS TO WATCH
UCF: Milton has thrown for 2,577 yards and 24 touchdowns. RB Greg McCrae has averaged 8.6 yards per carry on his way to 714 yards and five rushing TDs, and Milton’s targets include receivers Gabriel Davis, Tre Nixon and Dredrick Snelson, who collectively have 111 receptions for 1,600 yards and 14 TDs.
South Florida: QB Blake Barnett has completed 62 percent of his passes for 2,498 yards, 11 TDs and 11 interceptions. RB Jordan Cronkrite went over 1,000 yards rushing for the season’s during last week’s loss at Temple and has nine TDs.
FACTS & FIGURES
UCF will play the winner of Friday’s game between Houston and Memphis in the AAC championship game on Dec. 1. … Last year’s matchup between the Knights and Bulls went down to the wire, with UCF winning 49-42. … South Florida’s last victory over a ranked team was vs. Navy in 2016. The Bulls haven’t beaten a top-10 opponent since taking down No. 5 West Virginia is 2007.