For the first time since 2012, the Cincinnati Bearcats have started a season 3-0. That’s all thanks to the 63-7 beatdown they put on the Alabama A&M Bulldogs during their home opener at Nippert Stadium Saturday night.
In a game that was over before the first quarter even came to a close, the Bearcats led 42-0 at halftime and finished with 741 total yards. Desmond Ridder started at quarterback again and completed 9-of-10 pass attempts for 199 yards and three touchdowns. Hayden Moore (6-of-7, 58 yards), Ben Bryant (6-of-8, 75 yards) and Jake Sopko (0-of-1) each got a chance to run the offense.
The Bearcat receivers finally came out to play as well. After subdued work the first two weeks, guys like Kahlil Lewis (four receptions, 92 yards, TD), Thomas Geddis (one, 29 yards, TD), Rashad Medaris (two receptions, 38 yards) and Jayshon Jackson (six receptions, 80 yards) all got involved, with Thomas Geddis also making an impressive catch for a touchdown on the opening drive.
It wasn’t just the passing game that dominated either. UC ran for 409 yards, with freshmen Tavion Thomas (18 rushes, 141 yards, two TDs) and Charles McClelland (16 rushes, 121 yards, TD) both getting plenty of reps and lots of yards as the game got out of hand. Michael Warren came in as the starter and rushed for 78 yards and a touchdown on only six carries.
Obviously a 56-point margin of victory means the defense was on point as well. In addition to the offense’s dominance, UC allowed only 182 total yards.
The Bearcats aren’t going to have games this easy very often, including next week when they face the Ohio Bobcats in their last game before conference play begins.