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Monday, February 6, 2023

Football

AAC update: Only two undefeated teams remain after Cincinnati falls


Andres Chio/The Cougar

Week eight of the NCAA football season went as planned in much of the American Athletic Conference, but there was one big loss and a near upset.

Cincinnati lost in overtime to Temple, which is now 4-0 in conference after going 1-3 to start the season, and fell out of the Top 25.

Cincinnati’s defense played well as usual, but the offense could not get anything going through the air in Temple’s home stadium.

Temple won the conference in 2016 but had a mixed 2017. Temple now enters the murderers row of the conference schedule with games against No. 10 UCF, Houston and No. 20 South Florida up next in the schedule.

South Florida had a close call against last-place UConn, but it escaped with its record unscathed ahead of the game against Houston on Saturday.

Andres Chio/The Cougar

Most of the other results were by the book as UCF easily defeated ECU, SMU defeated TulaneĀ  and Houston defeated Navy.

SMU’s win did give the team sole possession of first place, but the team has a tough test next week against 6-1 Cincinnati.

Houston and Navy fought toe to toe in the first half, but Houston pulled away after making second half adjustments. It is a common trend for the Cougars, as the team has had to come back after mixed performances in the first half three times this season.

Junior quarterback D’Eriq King had 496 yards against Navy, while senior linebacker Austin Robinson had 21 tackles to win Offensive and Defensive Player of the Week honors, respectively.

Robinson did have to share the honor, though. UCF junior linebacker Nate Evans had 10 tackles of his own and a 94-yard fumble return for a touchdown.

Next week is a quiet one because four teams are on bye weeks, but Navy does have its annual showdown with No. 3 Notre Dame on Saturday night.

The hallowed rivalry is on CBS at 7 p.m. that day, but Houston and South Florida will also face off on national television on ABC at 2:30 p.m.

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