It is upon us. The Bearcats have defied the odds this year and are remarkably in position to put control of the Big East back in their hands this week. The game kicks off in 4 hours or less, depending on when you are reading this. By this time the storylines of the week are ingrained, but it never hurts to remember exactly what everyone is thinking before hand so that after the game you know just how far off the mark your favorite punching bag is.
2. Create Havoc With the Front Four: If there is one unit that’s worse than Rutgers’ rush defense it might be their own running attack, which averages only 90 yards per game. Cincinnati is the 2nd best team in the country against the run so it shouldn’t surprise anyone if Rutgers only has 20 – 30 yards on the ground tomorrow. But this has to be accomplished with just the defensive line so the Bearcats can drop 7 or 8 into coverage and give the quarterback, whoever that may be, no one to throw to. It will also help keep the Harrison/Sanu duo in check if the Bearcats can create a pass rush and stop the run with just 3 or 4 players.
Pead has emerged this year as one of the team’s characters, with an engaging personality and an easy manner with the media. Earlier this week he bragged about hosting Legaux on his recruiting two years ago visit and about his ability as a recruiter overall, having successfully landed five of the six recruits he hosted.
I am going to miss Pead, an entertaining tweeter and a human highlight reel. These days thats a very tough combo to beat.
"Munchie was a big find for us," Jones recalled earlier this week. "We basically did a national search of quarterbacks to find the best out there to fit our mold of quarterback to entrust in the future of our program. Obviously we had a lot of catching up to do."
An interesting look at the process that lead Munchie Leguax to Cincinnati
What Will Happen: Cincinnati has a week to get Legaux more comfortable in his new role as the starter behind center. His playbook will be thin, basically requiring him to hand off to Pead, make some plays with his feet and don’t do anything careless. On a day that the defense will rise to the challenge, and pull even more weight, it’ll be enough to earn the Bearcats a critical win on the road. In a battle of two of the country’s most opportunistic squad, Cincinnati will win the turnover battle, and force Dodd to scramble out of the pocket all afternoon. CFN Prediction: Cincinnati 26 … Rutgers 20
For the seventh time in the past 62 games, Cincinnati will field a first-time quarterback. How have they fared? Cincinnati is 6-0 in those games.
Jones says he won’t alter his offense because of the inexperience of Legaux, whose supporting cast is determined to do all they can to help him.
The uncertainty around Munchie could be a positive thing from a game planning perspective. He has 40 first team snaps to his name. That is not enough for Rutgers to get a bead on his skill set or how UC will use him within the offense. Again Munchie has more talent than Zach and his skill set is a perfect fit for the offense. I expect UC to show some things that they haven't shown to this point.
Not only have Dodd and Gary Nova combined to throw 13 interceptions, they are responsible for 19 of the turnovers Rutgers has been guilty of this season. And this is an offense that can’t easily overcome mistakes.