Listen man, they weren't an abomination when we scheduled them. They beat Baylor (one of those mobile-quarterback-having, fast as hell Baylors) in the Fiesta Bowl in 2013.
At least we didn't sign up for a home at home like the Terrapins. Seriously, have you seen Maryland's schedule? At FIU, at UCF? You must really enjoy FloriDUH. Honestly, only those of us that have been to the Citrus Bowl can appreciate the disappointment of the surrounding area of America's Worst Bowl Venue. And that area is basically UCF's campus. Sure, they stopped playing in the Citrus Bowl in 2007...but that should tell you just how bad it is. Basically a no name school scoffs at using a bowl venue as a home stadium. That's Orlando...and it's not the Disneyland version you see on TV. You are 10 times more likely to be slipped a Mickey than see Mickey Mouse.
So about the game:
Clearly, there's no quit in the Knights of UCF. Even when their backs were against the wall, down 21-0 after the first quarter, they managed to only be outscored 30-14 the rest of the way.
All my snark aside, I was prepared to provide the Knights with a small compliment along with the check we gave them to show up that will eclipse their gate take at home for 2016. But after Frost, his mother's son, had his chest puffed out after losing by 37? Makes me want to rekindle a hatred for Nebraska that I have ignored for the better part of the last 20 years. I only wish for Frosty to pull off the amazing feat of having the team go over .500 in his tenure like the legend of resume stuffing did before him. Looking forward to watching our old defensive coordinator kick your dick in next week.
OK, architect of the Flea Kicker aside, there were some things to point at on Saturday that weren't so positive. Mind you, only in a world where the Hawaii game existed could this game be looked at as "meh," But the 5-yard wide holes seemed to be missing for Chris Evans to run through, and the defense allowed a few big plays on the ground, skewing the stat line to make it look as if UCF pounded the ball when in fact they inserted a track star as a gimmick. Regardless, this lights a fire in the pants of the "wait until we play somebody good" crowd, and makes it disconcerting to look at the rushing stats on the scoreboard while you are trying to enjoy the game. However, it seems the strategy of UCF was not to take any middle ground. They chose to make Wilton into Tom Brady as opposed to turning Chris Evans into Walter Payton. I'll let Drew Hallett summarize:
So we've got some stuff to work on. Or maybe we don't. I used to use the excuse that we were hiding the playbook early in the season when we'd edge the Northern Inferior University Fighting Idiots by less than 10 points. Turns out most of the time we just sucked. We won by 37 on Saturday. And I'm pretty sure we're hiding the damn playbook.
Mike McCray was defensive player of the week in the Big Ten last week. Wilton Speight is the offensive player of the week in the Big Ten this week. Balance baby, balance. Injuries are healing. Young guys are getting real game time. Depth is building, and our schedule seems to be perfectly arranged so far in order of increasing difficulty. This should ramp us up nicely to beat the team that beat LSU.
In tailgate news, pretty nice turnout for the tailgate considering the weather.
3:30 kick next week folks. You think you're ready but you're not. Pace yourselves.
Welcome back everyone. Great tailgate, great atmosphere, great Michigan victory. Recaps and pictures are available on the game page here, or by following the year by year links at the top of the page.
See you next week as we honor Gar with the first ever Gar-themed tailgate!