The sim Bulls' pass defense has been extremely flimsy all year, and now they're going up against the sim Bearcats, who can throw the ball on anyone. Yeah, this isn't going to end well.
FINAL SCORE: CINCINNATI 34, USF 17
The game was actually low-scoring and close for awhile. It was 3-3 midway through the second quarter when Zach Collaros got rolling, completing a pass to Ben Guidugli for 22 yards, another to D.J. Woods for 23, and finally one to Armon Binns for a 25-yard touchdown to give the Bearcats a 10-3 lead. The Bulls responded, but made a very questionable decision late in the half, foregoing a 4th and 1 at the Cincinnati 36 with about a minute to go before halftime. Eric Schwartz (who won the kicking battle in the game) ended up missing a 53-yard field goal and the half ended 10-3.
The two teams traded scores on their opening possessions of the third quarter. (USF went for it on a 4th and 9 from the Bearcats 40, and B.J. Daniels hit Sterling Griffin for 35 yards. Remember, everyone on both teams is healthy in all these simulations because I FUBARed the sim dynasty.) Then the Bulls took advantage of a Keith McCaskill fumble recovery deep in Cincinnati territory. Mo Plancher ran for a 9-yard touchdown to tie the game at 17.
But USF wouldn't score again. Jake Rogers kicked a field goal on the Bearcats' ensuing possession to give them the lead back, 20-17. Then Isaiah Pead ran for a back-breaking 46-yard touchdown early in the fourth quarter, forcing the Bulls into comeback mode. USF drove to the Cincinnati 24, but Daniels was intercepted by Pat Lambert and the Bearcats drove down for the clinching score from Pead, helped along by a 38-yard pass from Collaros to Vidal Hazelton (again, everyone's healthy).
On the day, Collaros completed 31 of 50 passes for 396 yards and three touchdowns. Binns, Hazelton, and Woods all went over 75 yards receiving, and Guidugli had another 59. Isaiah Pead also ran 107 yards on only 15 carries. Overall, Cincinnati gained 541 yards, the second week in a row the sim Bulls have given up 500+. But unlike last week, the damage was done in the flow of the game, and not in garbage time.
Daniels struggled, completing just 18-for-45 with two interceptions. He was also sacked four times. Mo Plancher was once again a workhorse, getting a ridiculous 35 carries and gaining 143 yards with two TDs.
The sim Bulls drop to 4-3 on the season, and 1-2 in conference play. They now get a Saturday off before Rutgers pays a Wednesday night visit.