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14 Key Plays from Cincinnati’s Week 3 Win

Bearcats dominate in second half to beat Miami for the 14th straight season.

NCAA Football: Miami (Ohio) at Cincinnati Aaron Doster-USA TODAY Sports

It seemed appropriate, since this was Cincinnati’s 14th consecutive win over Miami, that we list out the 14 key plays that helped the Bearcats secure a 35-13 victory over the RedHawks.

Check out our instant reaction recap for more thoughts on Saturday’s week 3 victory.

Note: plays not listed in order of importance or any kind and penalties are not included - only positive plays, specific to the Bearcats own performance

1. Michael Warren’s 73 yard touchdown run. At the end of the third quarter was the final points of the game, putting Cincinnati up for good 35-13. The 73 yards was the second longest run of Warren’s career and capped off a three touchdown game, the third of his career. He now has 24 career rushing TDs, which is 7th on Cincinnati’s all-time records list.

2. Touchdown Josiah Deguara on 4th down. On the Bearcats first possession of the second half, the offense marched down the field during an 11 play, 78 yard drive capped off by Ridder hitting his tight end in stride on a beautiful pass on 4th and 5 for a 27 yard TD.

3. 51 yard touchdown to Thomas Geddis. Five minutes later, still in the third quarter, Ridder threw a 51 yard touchdown pass to senior WR Thomas Geddis. That touchdown put UC up 28-10, all but sealing the deal.

4. Jacob Dingle’’s open field tackle. Following Cincinnati’s first touchdown of the game, freshman safety Dingle made a beautiful open field tackle on Miami return man Maurice Thomas, at Miami’s own 14 yard line. The drive would later end in a fumble.

5. Rashad Medaris converts 4th down. On their final possession of the half, Cincinnati was marching down the field looking to put points on the board. On 4th and 6, from the Miami 40, Ridder hit senior WR Medaris for an 11 yard strike for a first down. Cincinnati scored 6 plays later.

6. Michael Warren’s go ahead touchdown. Warren’s second of three rushing TDs came at the end of the first half, from the wildcat formation, from one yard out. His touchdown put Cincinnati up 14-10, their first lead of the game. A lead that, obviously, was never relinquished after that.

7. Tre Tucker’s first career carry. This play didn’t seem all that significant at the time, but as soon as it happened, I was sure to note it. Tre Tucker, a true freshman with blazing speed, took the ball out of the backfield on the first play of the Bearcats third possession. He gained 9 yards and ultimately the Bearcats scored their first TD on that drive. Not saying Tucker is the catalyst for that drive, but prior to that point Cincinnati gained -9 yards on their first two possessions and showed zero signs of life or creativity on offense. I’d say using an 18 year old “athlete” position player in the backfield is somewhat creative.

8. Bryan Wright forced fumble. On the possession immediately following Cincinnati’s first touchdown, Miami was able to march down the field. After starting at their own 14 (courtesy of the aforementioned Jacob Dingle tackle), they got the ball down to the Cincinnati 18. Entering the game, Miami was 9-9 on scoring opportunities in the red zone (7 TDs) and made it 10-10 early in the game. On a 1st and 5 following a UC penalty, LB Bryan Wright looked like he got shot out of a cannon, flying right through the middle of Miami’s OL, sacking QB Brett Gabbert and knocking out the ball in the process. It was recovered by Myjai Sanders and was Miami’s first missed redzone opportunity of 2019.

9. James Smith pins Miami. We haven’t really seen the best of punter James Smith in 2019, but he had his best punt of the season at the start of the 4th quarter. From the Miami 35 yard line, Smith had a 33 yard punt, pinning Miami at their own 2 yard line. RedHawks would proceed to gain just 2 yards on their ensuing possession and be forced to punt.

10. Michael Pitts’ key sack. DL Michael Pitts had 2 sacks, but the big one came in the second quarter with Cincinnati down 10-7. Miami crossed into Cincinnati’s side of the field and on 3rd and 8, Pitts was able to bring pressure and sack Gabbert, forcing a punt.

11. Michael Pitts’ second sack. Still down 10-7, Pitts sacked Gabbert again on third down, on the next possession, forcing a three and out.

12. Michael Warren’s first TD. Well, we talked about the second and third so let’s talk about the first! Warren capped off an impressive 12 play drive with an 8 yard touchdown run, on a 3rd and 5.

13. Darrick Forrest pass deflection. Forrest was a monster, flying all over the field. He had one pass deflection and it came on Miami’s first possession in the second half on a 3rd and 8. Down 21-10, Miami was forced to punt.

14. Jayshon Jackson’s third down. The sophomore WR caught 3 passes and converted two first downs in the process. On their third possession of the first half, Tavion Thomas had a couple of nice runs to start and on 3rd and 3, Ridder was able to hit Jackson for a 5 yard gain. The next play, Ridder threw the previously noted 51 yard TD to Geddis. That TD would not have been possible without Jackson’s conversion.

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