By Bailey Curtiss on Monday, Oct. 18
CINCINNATI – Jerome Ford’s productive performance helped lead the University of Cincinnati Bearcats to victory against the University of Central Florida Knights by a final score of 56-21. Ford rushed for 189 yards on 20 carries in the win and scored four touchdowns in the first half, helping the Bearcats achieve a halftime lead of 35-7.
The rushing offense was supported by Ryan Montgomery, who ran for 95 yards with his longest run of 26. The Bearcats offense totaled 476 yards of offense, with 336 yards coming from the running offense. In total, the rushing game scored six touchdowns, with the longest run of 79 yards coming from Ford.
Desmond Ridder added to his Heisman Trophy resume, passing for 140 yards on 13/23 passes, and throwing a 19-yard touchdown pass to Alec Pierce. Ridder helped the offense score 50 points or more in consecutive games for the first time in program history. The Bearcats only lost one turnover, a fumble by Charles McClelland.
The defensive performance was highlighted by a 74-yard interception return for a touchdown by Coby Bryant, the first of his career. Deshawn Pace also caught an interception, marking his third on the season. The Bearcats had three turnovers in total, including a fumble recovery on a UCF punt return.
The pass rush kept UCF quarterback Mikey Keene in check, holding him to a QBR of 31.6 and only allowing one passing touchdown. While the rushing defense allowed a 51-yard run, they held the Knights to 4.2 yards per rush.
The Bearcats move to 6-0 on the season, extending their home winning streak to 24 in a row. In American Athletic Conference play, the Bearcats have now won 16 of their last 17 meetings. Cincinnati, now ranked #2 in the AP poll, travels to Annapolis to face Navy on Saturday.