The #21 UCF Knights open their season against the unranked Connecticut Huskies. Both teams are in the AAC East. The Knights are considered to be the best team in the division as well as the best in the league. The Huskies are rated sixth, or last, in the AAC East. Central Florida brings an explosive offense to the field, while the offers a decent offense that accompanied by a porous defense. Our 2018 UCF plays Connecticut college football pick has the Knights at -23.5 and the over/under at 68.0 points.
UCF Offense vs Huskies D
Last season, the fast-paced Knight offense scored 48.2 PPG (1st AAC, 1st Nationally). Six vets return to this dynamic offense, including QB McKenzie Milton (67.1 COMP%, 37 TDs, 9 INTs). Milton is a solid playmaker, and he can score through the air and on the ground. A major plus for this team is the O-line, which is tough and resilient. Naturally, that will aid the running and passing games. In addition, the wideouts and running backs are ready to go.
In 2017, the Huskies allowed an average of 37.9 PPG (11th AAC, 122nd Nationally). They were 130th in passing yards allowed. Connecticut does return their two starting corners from last season, sophomore Tyler Coyle (67 TKLs, 5 PBU, 2 INTs) and junior Marshe’ Terry (60 TKLs, 3 PBU, 1 INT). However, there’s not much else to recommend on this side of the ball. The linebacking unit and defensive line are both comprised of new starters with little experience.
Connecticut Offense vs Knights Defense
Last season, Connecticut was 11th in the AAC and 103rd in the nation in scoring, as they averaged 23.6 PPG. Senior David Pindell (52.8 COMP%, 4 TDs, 6 INTs) gets the start after tossing 159 passes last season. He did run for three touchdowns, averaging 4.0 YPA while accumulating 289 rushing yards. WR Hergy Mayala (43 REC, 14.3 YPC, 7 TDs) returns as the top receiver and four more players come back with 30 or more catches each. Sophomore running backs Kevin Mensah (561 YDs, 4.5 YPA, 4 TDs) and Nate Hopkins (343 YDs, 3.7 YPA, 7 TDs) are the two best weapons on this offense. The O-line is problematic.
The Knights had a tough defense last year. They held opponents to 25.3 PPG (3rd AAC, 52nd Nationally). The weakest unit on this side of the ball is the line, but they are in no way weak. They’ve got some quality players. The top units are the LBs and secondary. Safeties Kyle Gibson and Tre Neal are premium defenders and fine pick-off artists. ILB Pat Jasinski led the team last season with 107 tackles and 7.5 TFL. He’s the anchor of this D.
Our 2018 UCF Plays Connecticut College Football Pick
Our 2018 UCF plays Connecticut college football pick like UCF a lot. We can see them scoring a good 60 points tonight. We’re taking the Knights at -23.5. The over/under should go over, as we do think that the Huskies will score a few points. We think 10 to 15 wouldn’t be a stretch.