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Cincinnati Bearcats Opponent Preview: East Carolina

COLLEGE FOOTBALL: NOV 21 East Carolina at Temple Photo by Andy Lewis/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

The Cincinnati Bearcats conclude their 2021 regular season with a trip to beautiful Greenville, North Carolina.

Cincinnati’s matchup with East Carolina, a club that has been in 3 or 4 winsville for sometime, is no joke.

The ECU Pirates will be the surprise team in the AAC this year.

At the skill positions, there is arguably not a better team in the conference.

When he has time, junior quarterback Holton Ahlers is an excellent passer, a sturdy in the saddle gunslinger in the mold of Drew Bledsoe.

Pocket rocket Tyler Snead is one of the AAC’s best receivers. This Julian Edelman type could well be a 100-catch man in 2021.

Squat halfback Rahjai Harris can make things happen when he has room and there are a lot worse offensive lines in the AAC.

This club averaged just over 30 points per game last season and there’s no telling how many they can post this season.

Problem is that the Pirates didn’t show much inclination to stop anyone on defense last year, giving up nearly 35 per game. A year’s further seasoning should aid a unit that returns 9 starters.

There are a couple of legitimate standouts on ECU’s defense. DB Jireh Wilson is a Charles Bronson-style badass on defense, a veritable linebacker in a safety’s body. On the defensive line, Rick D’Abreu looked like a war daddy in the making last season.

Time will tell how this unit gels and how it will shape the success of this club in 2021.