Originally posted on Bearcats Blog  |  Last updated 9/24/13
One really has to rack their brain in coming up with great things that happened this past weekend, when Cincinnati shut out Miami in the ugliest game of the past few years. It was the first scoreless game through 3 quarters since 2007. That was also a game featuring Miami. This game was ugly from the start and ugly in a way where it made you question just how good this team is going to be. Both road performances have been awful. UC has still been outscored on the road this season, something no one thought would happen with this game on the slate. If any game the rest of the way was going to be a flat out suck fest, at least it was this one, where Cincinnati was never threatened by Miami. The defense was superb. They locked down Miami to 87 yards and 4 first downs. The Redhawks had 11 plays go for losses. The defense was simply awesome. When they needed a big play late in the game, Deven Drane made it. Miami had no chance to score unless the UC offense gave them points. They kept the Miami offense off of the field, which allowed the UC offense to finally move against a tired Miami defense. The Redhawks held the ball 8 minutes and 20 seconds the entire second half. Completely dominant effort. The offense really, really tried to help Miami stay in the game. They were sloppy all day long. They turned the ball over multiple times. They couldn't convert in the red zone. It was sloppy, sloppy football. It was so bad that people were calling for a QB change. This coming a week after people were saying Kay should have been starting all season. People don't know what they want sometimes. Let's focus on the defense. After not being able to get after the QB all year, they picked up 5 sacks against Miami. Jordan Stepp had 2. Silverberry Mouhon had 1.5. Mitch Meador got himself 1. Jeff Luc teamed up with Mouhon for half a sack. Austen Boucher went back to pass 21 times, he was sacked nearly 24% of the time. The sacks don't include other tackles for loss. Adam Dempsey had 1.5 TFL, Leviticus Payne, pardon, LEVITICUS PAYNE had 1 and Terrell Hartsfield, Mitch Meador and Nick Temple all got credit for half a tackle for loss. Arryn Chenault had a pretty big game. He had an INT. He broke up another pass and he laid the hammer down on a couple of Miami receivers. Chenault has looked really good this season. Deven Drane hasn't had the same chance to look good due to injuries and not having the ball thrown his way, but Miami threw at him Saturday to no success. Drane broke up a pass. Later in the game he had a 38 yard INT return to set up the final Bearcat touchdown. Big game from Drane. Let's give some credit to the Miami defense. They played their asses off. The defense was shredded against Kentucky and Marshall, but they gave UC fits. Kent Kern had 15 tackles, 1.5 for loss. Josh Dooley had 11 tackles. Dayonne Nunley looked like a pro. He had 10 tackles, an INT and he broke up 3 passes. He was all over the field. Unfortunately for him and fortunately for us, he was called for a huge pass interference. Miami had 8 tackles for loss and forced 3 turnovers. Cincinnati had 8 plays for loss and had 3 turnovers. I really don't know what was up with Brendon Kay. He was 23-37 for 171 yards and 2 INTs. That was probably the worst performance of his career. It was the fewest yards he's thrown as a starter. it was the second lowest completion percentage. It was pretty much just like the Rutgers game last year. It was not a banner day for Kay. He did run for 30 yards and a TD. That was a plus. The offensive line was eventually able to wear down Miami to help UC for for 198 yards. But they were abused frequently. It seemed all the Miami pressure came up the middle. Deyshawn Bond showed off some of the inexperience. UC averaged 3.8 yards a rush and 4.1 yards a play. That's pretty bad. They didn't look ready for what Miami threw at them. Which is kind of on the coaching staff as well. This was the 3rd time in 4 games that Cincinnati opened poorly. 3 times they have not scored in the first quarter. They didn't look prepared or up for the Miami game at all. That's something you can get away with in other sports. This season is only 12 games. Falling into the trap is commonplace. UC almost bit it hard Saturday. I also don't really understand the decision to not put in Bennie Coney. Tuberville has been very quick to pull the trigger before and didn't for whatever reason. I know that sounded very hypocritical considering I've said all along to pick a QB. But he's rotated all season and this seemed like a good time for a kick in the ass. I guess Coney is not ready. And Tuberville lied to us in the press conference last week. The bastard. While we are talking about coaching, I really, really, really want to ask Eddie Gran about the runs up the middle. They only work when the back is able to bounce it outside. Most of the time they seem to go right into the teeth of the defense and are a sure 3 yards and that's it. It's fine if you have Jerome Bettis. RDA and Hosey have wheels and it doesn't feel like they are being used the right way. Ralph David Abernathy IV and Hosey Williams ran very well. They combined for 168 yards. For the second game in a row, Williams scored while Abernathy did not. The carries went 24-20 in favor of RDA. That's a nice balance. RDA added 16 yards receiving for 106 total yards. They ran hard. They didn't run far, both were under 4 yards a carry, but they ran hard. Shaq Washington had 11 catches for 68 yards. He put up the first double digit catch game for a Bearcats receiver since 2010. He found his spot in the Miami defense and was there all day. He's playing pretty well this season. Washington also looked good on punt returns. Sure, they were all called back because of penalties, but he looked solid. DJ Dowdy made his first career catch on Saturday. Congrats, DJ. There were a couple of drops by the receivers. Some were because Kay was laying guys out, like Mekale McKay. They certainly didn't help things out though. The field goal unit was not great. I love Tony Miliano, but I think everyone on earth knew he would miss the 38 yard field goal when UC didn't go for it on 4th and 1 from the Miami 21. That broke his string of 7 straight makes. On his second attempt, Miliano was blocked. Bad times. John Lloyd booted a 50 yard punt. That was pretty good. Zac Murphy might be punting in the NFL next year. This was a great game for his resume. He punted 8 times for a 52.4 yard average. He did hit 3 touchbacks, but that doesn't matter because of his mega punt. Miami was at their 12. He smacked an 84 yard punt to the UC 4. Keep in mind he kicked it from the 2. It was unreal. UC has had some really awful luck with punts going back to the Belk Bowl. This is a good picture of the cheerleaders. Wait a second. Look at this guy. This is either a bad angle of his head or we now know the reason that guy is a male cheerleader. Winning ugly can feel like losing, but I'm pretty sure none of us will remember this game in a month. So that's the best positive of all. Photos via Go Bearcats/USA Today
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