UCF finishes off another 10-victory season

by Gary Shelton on December 24, 2019

in general

Thompson looks for a hol e in UCF's victory./© JOE MESTAS

Tuesday, 2 a.m.

In the backyard of their biggest rival, UCF showed USF just how far it has to go to catch up under new coach Jeff Scott.

UCF walloped Marshall, 48-25, in Monday's Gasparilla Bowl.

"It was important to finish the season the right way," said UCF coach Josh Heupel. "We talked a lot about the seniors leaving a legacy.”

In last year's Gasparilla Bowl, Marshall beat USF.

Content beyond this point is for members only.

Already a member? To view the rest of this column, sign in using the handy "Sign In" button located in the upper right corner of the GarySheltonSports.com blog (it's at the far right of the navigation bar under Gary's photo)!

Not a member? It's easy to subscribe so you can view the rest of this column and all other premium content on GarySheltonSports.com.

Marlon Williams scores a touchdown for UCF in his big game./© JOE MESTAS

The Knights got off to a 21-0 first-quarter lead behind two defensive touchdowns. Richie Grant returned an interception 39 yards for a score, and Tre'Mon Morris-Brash returned a fumble 45 yards.

Quarterback Dillon Gabriel threw for 260 yards, including hitting Marlon Williams seven times for 132 yards.

The Knights got 80 yards rushing from Greg McCrae and 74 from Bentavious Thompson.

”Huge change in the way the game is played (because we scored early)," Heupel said. "Early in the football game there was horrendous weather. I thought in all three phases our kids handled it pretty well. The turnovers and the defense were critical, which put a bunch of space between us and them on the scoreboard. I thought in the first half they (our defense) were absolutely suffocating.”

It was the third straight 10-win season for UCF.

Even with 48 points, Heupel wasn't satisfied with his team's offense.

”We weren’t perfect offensively early in the football game. We were just trying to get our feet on the ground and give our defense a lead in part because of the weather. There were some penalties that ended some drives and put us in some adverse situations. I thought we started defensively about as fast as we can and special teams was solid all day long.”

Previous post:

Next post: