The difference between UCF and Miami is the Canes have been there before.
When Miami gets in the red zone the offense knows how to put it in the end zone and they have the players, who have the mental toughness to know what to do in each pressure situation.
Unfortunately, our Knights haven’t figured out what it takes to get it over that hump. Even when it looked like Miami wanted to give us the game, we simply refused to accept their generous gift.
Brett Hodges was 12 for 27 for 163 yards, 1 touchdown and 1 interception. We saw glimpses of backup Rob Calabrese that we all wish to forget. He came in for an injured Hodges, who was constantly getting hit by the Miami defenders.
Brynn Harvey couldn’t get things going as he rushed 12 times for 25 yards.
Both Nick Cattoi and Blake Clingan had a night to forget. Cattoi could not replicate his career day from two weeks ago against Memphis, as he missed badly on a 32-yard field goal and a chance to give the Knights the lead.
Clingan muffed a punt for 9 yards and a chance to give the Knights good field position at the beginning of the second half. That muffed punt lead to a quick touchdown by Miami to put them up 17-0.
The Knights then went on a scoring drive of their own as Brett Hodges connected with Rocky Ross for an 8-yard touchdown pass.
It seemed like this was our night when Miami over snapped the punter to give the Knights the ball at the 2-yard line. Then the Knights proved they are not ready to compete with the big boys of the BCS.
Hodges threw a pick and all Knights fans grabbed their car keys as they looked for the nearest exit.
The lone bright spot was our defensive line. They pressured and sacked Jacory Harris 6 times. Constant pressure kept the Knights in the game but the offense could not capitalize.
Although the defensive line was doing its part on defense, Jacory Harris was constantly picking on Justin Boddie. Harris found Laron Byrd for big plays any time needed as Boddie gave Byrd 5 yards cushions on every play.
If you’re asking the same question I am, then the answer is yes. In Justin Boddie’s nightmares tonight, “The Byrd, the Byrd, the Byrd is the word.”
For Knights fans this is one of those games where all we can say is, “We had them.” In the words of “The Great” Dennis Green, “They were who we thought they were, and we let ’em off the hook!”