2. Oh yeah, that Jahad Thomas character ain’t too shabby, either. Not only did he run for a career-best 193 yards on 26 carries a week after carrying the Owls’ offense against Penn State, but he ripped off an electrifying 100-yard kickoff return to start the second half and then, after Cincy responded with an 88-yard TD reception, delivered an upper cut to the Bearcats’ collective chins with a 56-yard scoring jaunt to give Temple a 24-12 advantage less than two minutes into the third quarter. All told, he had 342 total yards vs. Cincy.
3. The vaunted pass rush that likely erased Penn State QB Christian Hackenberg’s status as 2016 No. 1 overall NFL draft pick turned to vapor against the much better OL Cincy ran out there Saturday night. After rolling up an American Athletic Conference-record 10 sacks last week, the Owls mustered just 1 against the Bearcats … and it was hardly a statement-making effort at that with Nate D. Smith getting the 2-yard tackle for loss.
4. Can we please, once and for all, destroy the lifetime dispensation of the prevent defense by any football coach at any level? The Owls were cruising along 34-12 early in the fourth quarter and shifted into that silliness the remainder of the game, and the results were what you’d expect: damn-near fatal. Cincy QB Gunner Kiel went from obvious goat to near-hero with a 188-yard, 2-TD passing fourth quarter once the Owls went limp on D.
5. That Cincy team is good. Damn good. The Owls were fortunate to get out of Nippert Stadium with the victory and the edge in the AAC East Division standings, after getting almost doubled up in yardage (557-296). Turnovers – the ’Cats had 5, the Owls 1 – saved them … and penalties (12 for 112 yards) almost killed them. Thomas even fumbled to open the door for Cincy down the stretch, and set the stage for Matakevich’s clinching heroics.
- Jack Kerwin | email@example.com