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Photo by: Isaac Babcock - UCF tight end Adam Nissley romps into the end zone after catching a short pass  from quarterback Jeff Godfrey. The Knights' offense sparkled in the 41-14 win.
Winter Park / Maitland Observer Wednesday, Oct. 27, 2010 8 years ago

Knights dismantle Owls

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UCF wins easily
by: Isaac Babcock Managing Editor

Before the University of Central Florida’s most prolific quarterback of all time stepped onto the field at halftime, the current crop of Knights were already working to upstage him. What former Knights’ passer Daunte Culpepper would watch from the sidelines Saturday was a four-quarter dismantling of Rice, ending at 41-14.

With the school’s most recognizable football icon looking on, the Knights showed that the passing game isn’t dead at UCF, as freshman Jeff Godfrey connected on a 59-yard pass with receiver Kamar Aiken on the first offensive play of the game.

“It meant a lot for him to be here,” Godfrey said of Culpepper’s appearance. “He told me to go out, have fun and play some football.”

The Knights jumped ahead in the game immediately, posting two touchdowns within the first eight minutes. From there they cruised, giving playing time to some new faces, and still managing to score five unanswered touchdowns before the Owls finally broke a shutout with five minutes left in the third quarter.

The numbers may have been the most lopsided the Knights have produced all season, picking up 391 total yards to Rice’s 229, including those 269 yards in the air — the best passing performance by the Knights since Nov. 1, 2009, when senior Brett Hodges connected for 342 yards to beat Marshall by a 21-20 margin.

The Knights’ prolific passing came courtesy of a one-two punch from freshman quarterback Jeff Godfrey, who threw for 178 yards, and recently promoted backup L.D. Crow, who connected for 91 yards.

Crow’s performance was particularly eye-opening for the Knights. After fumbling his first snap, he completed 5-of-6 passes, including a 40-yard touchdown bomb to Ricky Kay in what would be the Knights’ longest drive of the game. After starting off at the UCF two-yard line, Crow led the Knights 98 yards in just more than 5 minutes on the field.

With the win well in hand by the third quarter, the Knights began platooning nearly their entire sideline. By game’s end, 26 defensive players would have at least one tackle to their credit. Defensive end Darius Nall had a hand in six tackles, sending the Owls back 18 yards. Defensive lineman Troy Davis participated in three tackles, also reversing the Owls 18 yards.

In the end, the Knights would combine for six touchdowns, with short rush specialist Ronnie Weaver running into the end zone three times in the game.

Head Coach George O’Leary said he was proud of the team, but that it needed to play more consistently to beat stronger teams.

“We played well in spurts,” O’Leary said. “But we turned the ball over a couple times in the second half.”

Now the Knights (5-2, 3-0) are looking at perhaps their toughest conference foe of the season in East Carolina (5-2, 4-0), which arrives in town for a 3:30 p.m. kickoff Saturday.

The Pirates have shown themselves adept at winning close games, winning two of their conference games by two points or less. More telling is their 33-27 overtime win against N.C. State, a team which defeated the Knights at home 28-21 earlier in the season.

Before the University of Central Florida’s most prolific quarterback of all time stepped onto the field at halftime, the current crop of Knights were already working to upstage him. What former Knights’ passer Daunte Culpepper would watch from the sidelines Saturday was a four-quarter dismantling of Rice, ending at 41-14.

With the school’s most recognizable football icon looking on, the Knights showed that the passing game isn’t dead at UCF, as freshman Jeff Godfrey connected on a 59-yard pass with receiver Kamar Aiken on the first offensive play of the game.

“It meant a lot for him to be here,” Godfrey said of Culpepper’s appearance. “He told me to go out, have fun and play some football.”

The Knights jumped ahead in the game immediately, posting two touchdowns within the first eight minutes. From there they cruised, giving playing time to some new faces, and still managing to score five unanswered touchdowns before the Owls finally broke a shutout with five minutes left in the third quarter.

The numbers may have been the most lopsided the Knights have produced all season, picking up 391 total yards to Rice’s 229, including those 269 yards in the air — the best passing performance by the Knights since Nov. 1, 2009, when senior Brett Hodges connected for 342 yards to beat Marshall by a 21-20 margin.

The Knights’ prolific passing came courtesy of a one-two punch from freshman quarterback Jeff Godfrey, who threw for 178 yards, and recently promoted backup L.D. Crow, who connected for 91 yards.

Crow’s performance was particularly eye-opening for the Knights. After fumbling his first snap, he completed 5-of-6 passes, including a 40-yard touchdown bomb to Ricky Kay in what would be the Knights’ longest drive of the game. After starting off at the UCF two-yard line, Crow led the Knights 98 yards in just more than 5 minutes on the field.

With the win well in hand by the third quarter, the Knights began platooning nearly their entire sideline. By game’s end, 26 defensive players would have at least one tackle to their credit. Defensive end Darius Nall had a hand in six tackles, sending the Owls back 18 yards. Defensive lineman Troy Davis participated in three tackles, also reversing the Owls 18 yards.

In the end, the Knights would combine for six touchdowns, with short rush specialist Ronnie Weaver running into the end zone three times in the game.

Head Coach George O’Leary said he was proud of the team, but that it needed to play more consistently to beat stronger teams.

“We played well in spurts,” O’Leary said. “But we turned the ball over a couple times in the second half.”

Now the Knights (5-2, 3-0) are looking at perhaps their toughest conference foe of the season in East Carolina (5-2, 4-0), which arrives in town for a 3:30 p.m. kickoff Saturday.

The Pirates have shown themselves adept at winning close games, winning two of their conference games by two points or less. More telling is their 33-27 overtime win against N.C. State, a team which defeated the Knights at home 28-21 earlier in the season.

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