Saturday, Oct. 3, The Bounce House, Orlando, Fla., 7:30 ET
Tulsa Golden Hurricane
The Golden Hurricane had an unexpected week off — their game against Arkansas State was postponed because of COVID-19 issues — and will be playing for the first time since a 16-7 loss at Oklahoma State Sept. 19. The Hurricane was within 13-7 late in that game before giving up the ball on downs deep in their own territory, which led to OSU’s clinching field goal.
Zach Smith was 18 of 28 passing for 165 yards and a touchdown. The Hurricane lost linebacker Yohance Burnett, a potential starter, to a preseason knee injury but still limited the Cowboys to 277 yards in total offense. Running backs Sharmari Brooks (2,700 yards, 23 touchdowns) and Corey Taylor II (1,490 yards, 22 touchdowns) entered the season with nearly 4,200 career rushing yards.
The Knights have amassed 100 points and 1,292 yards of total offense in big wins over Georgia Tech and East Carolina, but the numbers that catch coach Josh Heupel’s eye are the 27 penalties for 190 yards assessed against the Knights in their two wins. “The penalties do stand out,” Heupel said. “We’ve got to get them corrected.”
Dillon Gabriel has passed for 825 yards and the Knights have gotten 366 rushing yards from a combination of Greg McRae, Otis Anderson, and Ben Thompson. Marlon Williams has 23 receptions for 290 yards and a pair of touchdowns already. The pass rush needs to be more productive. The Knights have just two sacks in two games.
Tulsa Golden Hurricane at UCF Knights Betting Pick
Smith was 10 of 14 passing for 127 yards in Tulsa’s 34-31 comeback win against UCF last year before leaving with a leg injury. He is in his second season at Tulsa after transferring from Baylor. The Knights enter the game with a 21-game winning streak at the Bounce House, the new name for their Spectrum Stadium home in Orlando.
Tulsa Golden Hurricane at UCF Knights Betting Pick: Knights (-10.5) 52, Golden Hurricane (+10.5) 28
Tulsa Golden Hurricane at UCF Knights Best Bet
The two teams combined for 65 points last year and have the firepower back to match that. The Knights have won 37 of their last 41 games and scored at least 30 points in 39 of their last 40 games. Tulsa has won the last three meetings with UCF and is 3-3 against the Knights in Orlando.
Tulsa Golden Hurricane at UCF Knights Best: OVER 52.5