SMU Mustangs vs UCF Knights Preview

The Mustangs run game will be needed on Wednesday night. Photo Courtesy: Dominic Ceraldi

By DaVince “Dino” Wright

Game Info
SMU Mustangs vs UCF Knights
Saturday – October 5 – 6:00 p.m.
FBC Mortgage Stadium – Orlando, FL

Records Before the Game
SMU Mustangs (2-2, 0-0 American)
UCF Knights (3-1, 0-0 American)

This game has been circled on the Mustangs schedule since last season. UCF has been the proverbial thorn in the side of Mustangs players. The game will be a measuring stick for the Mustangs defense. UCF has a good offensive scheme with misdirection and play action run plays that set up the Knights passing game.

Series to Date
Remember how I mentioned the Knights being the proverbial thorn for the Mustangs? It’s because in the previous 10 meetings between the two schools, the Knights have won eight of them. However the Mustangs did win last season’s match up in Dallas (55-28). Mustangs head coach Rhett Lashlee and Knights head coach Gus Malzahn coached together at Arkansas State, Arkansas and Auburn however they’ll be on opposite sidelines this Wednesday night. Lastly, when Malzahn was at Shiloh Christian; Lashlee played for him. So it’ll be a reunion of sorts when the two schools play. 

SMU Mustangs
The Mustangs have a pretty good team this year. The loss at home to TCU was just that… a loss. That doesn’t erase the quality wins for this team this season. The Mustangs are 2-2 and looking to bounce back from last week’s 8-point loss to TCU. The Mustangs offense is averaging 38.5 points a game while the defense is giving up 25.5 on that side of the ball. The key for SMU will be on special teams. Field goals will be key in this one. Keep an eye on kicker Collin Rogers.

UCF Knight
UCF had a nice upset win over Georgia Tech last week. The Knights are led by senior quarterback John Rhys Plumlee. He has 827 passing yards with 5 touchdowns and 3 interceptions. He is a gunslinger that can beat you with his arm and feet. He is leading the team in rushing as well. He has racked up 404 yards on 69 carries and recorded 4 touchdowns on the ground. Keep and eye on junior receiver Javon Baker. He has 257 receiving yards on 18 receptions with 2 touchdowns. He will be the x-factor for the Knights offense.

ESPN has the Knights with a 71.5% chance of winning at home on Wednesday night. I have the Mustangs winning in an upset by 8! The over/under is 63, so take the under!

Final Score
Mustangs – 30
Knights – 22