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SMU (3-4) at Cincinnati (6-2)



The Sports Network

DATE & TIME: Saturday, November 9, 12 p.m. (et)

FACTS & STATS: Site: Nippert Stadium (35,097) -- Cincinnati, Ohio. Television: ESPN Regional, ESPN3.com. Home Record: SMU 2-2, Cincinnati 4-0. Away Record: SMU 1-2, Cincinnati 2-2. Neutral Record: SMU 0-0, Cincinnati 0-0. Conference Record: SMU 2-1, Cincinnati 3-1. Series Record: First-ever meeting.

GAME NOTES: The Cincinnati Bearcats will try for their fourth straight victory on Saturday when they host the SMU Mustangs in an American Athletic Conference contest at Nippert Stadium.

The Bearcats are not the only ones trying to keep a winning streak going. By topping Temple, 59-49, in its last outing, SMU has earned back-to-back victories for the first time this season. The two wins pushed the Mustangs to a 3-4 overall mark and a 2-1 record in conference play. In the win over Temple the Mustangs smashed a number of school records, including total offense (728 yards), passing yards (538) and first downs (34).

Even though no school records fell for Cincinnati last time out, the Bearcats were still triumphant. In a Wednesday night matchup with Memphis, the Bearcats posted a 34-21 victory, marking a third straight win for Tommy Tuberville's squad. The Bearcats have scored at least 34 points in all three of those wins, while holding all foes to 21 or fewer points. At 6-2 overall, Cincinnati has earned itself bowl eligibility for the third straight year. The team's 3-1 mark in league play also has it tied for third in the AAC standings with No. 20 Louisville.

This is not only the first matchup for the Bearcats against the Mustangs as league foes but the first between the two teams ever.

The performance the Mustangs put forth against Temple really showed how powerful they can be on offense, as they are currently second in the conference in total offense (489 ypg). Like any June Jones squad the onus has been on the pass, as the Mustangs lead the league in passing.

Against Temple, Garrett Gilbert was virtually unstoppable. The Mustangs' signal caller has been piling up the yards all season but his effort against the Owls was on another level, as he threw for 538 yards and four touchdowns while also rushing for 97 yards and two more scores. Those six total touchdowns are tied for the second most by a player in SMU history. On the year, Gilbert has thrown for 2,634 yards and 14 scores on 65.1 percent passing.

With Gilbert slinging the ball all over the field there had to be someone to pull in the passes and Keenan Holman was the prime target, as he had 10 receptions for 209 yards and three touchdowns against the Owls. Holman (42 receptions, 655 yards, six TDs) is part of a nice quartet of receivers for the Mustangs. Leading the way is Jeremy Johnson (64 receptions, 752 yards, four TDs), while Darius Joseph (64 receptions, 561 yards, three TDs) and Der'rikk Thompson (19 receptions, 239 yards, TD) are also capable of big games.

Gilbert is the leading rusher for the Mustangs, who don't put as much stock in yards on the ground. Traylon Shead (197 yards, three TDS) and Prescott Line (152 yards, two TDs) each rushed for a score in the win over Temple, but have largely been only occasional contributors.

Where SMU really needs work is on the defensive side of the ball. Though they were able to take down Temple thanks to the incredible offensive performance, the Mustangs still ended up allowing 593 yards to the Owls, who are one of the teams near the bottom of the AAC in total offense. Overall, SMU is second to last in the conference in total defense (448.9 ypg), although it is one of four teams in the conference with at least 20 sacks.

The Bearcats are one of the better offensive squads in the conference. Cincinnati is fourth in the league in total yards (463.3 ypg), while scoring a healthy 34 points per game.

Brendon Kay has looked his best over the last two weeks as he followed up a four-touchdown performance against Connecticut with his first 300-yard passing game of the season against Memphis. Kay has now thrown for 1,709 yards and 14 scores, completing an impressive 72.4 percent of his passes.

Kay has really developed a strong connection with Shaq Washington and Anthony McClung. Washington pulled in 11 passes for 96 yards against Memphis and McClung had nine catches for 98 yards and a score. McClung (37 receptions, 462 yards, five TDs) has had a touchdown reception in each of the last three games, while Washington (49 receptions, 432 yards) has had at least 50 yards in four of the last five.

Much like SMU the Bearcats are not a team that believes in running the ball as much as throwing it. That doesn't mean they don't have the ability in the backfield to pick up yards. Ralph David Abernathy (387 yards, three TDs), Hosey Williams (362 yards, four TDs) and Tion Green (278 yards, six TDs) are all capable backs that are averaging better than four yards per carry.

Even though they may not be the best defensive unit in the league the Bearcats have certainly been a team that has put forth strong showings on that side of the ball. Cincinnati is limiting foes to just 18 points per game, while ranking second in the conference behind Louisville in total yards allowed (280 pg). Linebackers Greg Blair (51 tackles, 5.5 TFL) and Nick Temple (41 tackles, 8.0 TFL, 4.0 sacks) are the anchors of the defense, while Silverberry Mouhon (5.5 sacks) is a skilled pass rusher.

Against Temple SMU looked lethal offensively. Against Cincinnati the Mustangs will not be so fortunate. The Bearcats will be able to move the ball at will against SMU, while stifling the Mustang offense.

Sports Network Predicted Outcome: Cincinnati 40, SMU 20

11/06 10:48:25 ET

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Scoreboard
Local
Final
NCCU 21
NCA 14
 
Final
DAVID 72
UNC 90
Final
ECU 34
TULA 6
 
1st
COL 0
CAR 0
 
9:30pm Tonight
DUKE
STAN
4th
ORL 81
MIA 91
 
4th
IND 79
PHO 98
 
3rd
NYK 62
PHI 44
 
3rd
CLE 65
TOR 70
 
Half
HOU 60
DAL 51
 
Half
MIN 52
SAC 48
 
2nd
SAN 36
BRK 20
 
2nd
MIL 37
WAS 23
 
1st
UTA 1
NOP 2
 
Final
UGA 55
CHSO 9
Final
UF 52
EKU 3
Final
OSU 42
IND 27
Final
OKLA 44
KU 7
 
Final
UAB 18
MARS 23
Final
NEB 24
MINN 28
 
Final
PURD 14
NW 38
 
Final
ILL 16
PSU 14
Final
MSU 45
RUTG 3
Final
UCF 53
SMU 7
 
Final
SCAR 37
SALABAMA 12
Final
WKENT 45
TXSANANTO 7
 
Final
WAKE 6
VT 3
 
Final
ODU 30
LATU 27
 
Final
ARST 52
WASU 31
 
Final
CMICH 20
WMICH 32
 
Final
COLST 58
NMU 20
Final
LALAF 16
APPST 35
Final
BST 45
EMICH 30
Final
HOU 38
TULSA 28
Final
UTAH 10
ARZ 42
 
Final
FSU 20
BC 17
 
Final
UNT 17
FIU 14
 
Final
CLEM 28
GASTATE 0
 
Final
ND 28
LOU 31
 
Final
MICH 16
MD 23
 
Final
ARK 30
MISS 0
 
Final
PITT 30
SYR 7
 
Final
ISU 31
TTU 34
 
Final
ECU 34
TULA 6
 
Final
IOWA 24
WISC 26
 
Final
MEM 31
SFLA 20
 
Final
CAL 17
STAN 38
 
Final
NMST 17
LAMON 30
 
Final
ALA 48
WCAR 14
 
Final
OREG 44
COL 10
 
3rd
MTST 21
FATL 27
 
3rd
UVA 13
MIAMI 7
 
3rd
AUB 17
SAMF 7
 
Half
TENN 13
MIZZ 13
 
Half
BAY 28
OKST 14
 
Half
MSST 37
VANDY 0
 
2nd
UCONN 0
CIN 14
 
2nd
UCLA 14
USC 14
 
10:15pm Tonight
WYO
BSU
10:30pm Tonight
NEV
FRES
10:30pm Tonight
WASH
ORST
11:00pm Tonight
HAW
UNLV
Final
PRIN 68
INCWORD 79
 
Final
UMASS 68
ND 81
Final
GEOR 80
RMU 66
 
Final
LAS 59
PETE 50
Final
VT 63
APP 65
 
Final
IUPUI 71
BST 69
 
Final
WMICH 91
DRAK 75
 
Final
RICH 80
HIGH 56
 
Final
MSST 71
UTST 63
Final
CAMP 48
COL 54
 
Final
DAVID 72
UNC 90
Final
NIOWA 66
UNF 49
 
Final
CSNO 79
SAMF 72
 
Final
YALE 61
MLOWELL 63
 
Final
NEV 50
CLEM 59
Final
PROV 80
FSU 54
 
Final
MARQ 89
NEOM 97
Final
DET 66
SALA 53
 
Final
TXSA 80
TXST 67
 
Final
CHIST 75
TRINCHRIS 52
 
Final
UMO 63
LIB 52
 
Final
BONA 59
CAN 53
 
Final
SAV 87
CLST 83
 
Final
NW 68
ELON 67
 
Final
RFLSH 57
MDES 53
 
Final
CARK 68
SEMIZ 74
 
Final
AFA 90
WSCO 60
 
Final
YOUNG 82
LONG 72
 
Final
MTST 66
SOUTH 48
 
Final
ARKLR 73
UMKC 68
 
Final
ABCHRIST 81
DUQ 102
 
Final
WEBER 58
LSU 72
 
Final
BUT 80
GHND 39
 
Final
CSFU 70
SJST 66
 
Final
WOFF 72
SD 68
 
Final
NORST 76
TXSOU 66
 
Final
COOK 42
TOWS 63
 
Final
SILL 46
YALE 53
 
Final
KNST 83
ALCOR 80
 
Final
MAN 78
BING 63
 
Final
JVST 88
MILES 71
 
Final
CSOU 79
WRST 86
 
Final
CITA 81
BOBJONES 50
 
Final
INDST 78
BRO 66
 
Final
WYO 56
COL 33
 
Final
GSOUT 97
FCCOL 41
 
Final
CCAR 76
PIED 33
 
Final
LATU 63
AMER 44
 
2nd
MAR 62
ARMY 74
 
2nd
TENT 68
CHAT 67
 
Final
EKENT 115
CLERMONT 50
 
Final
SMU 77
EWASH 68
 
2nd
NIAG 60
HART 64
 
Final
PENN 77
LAF 83
 
Final
UCSB 91
MASTERS 45
 
Final
BUCK 69
MNTER 73
 
Final
VMI 93
UNCW 110
 
1st OT
RIU 53
NEB 53
 
Final
NKENTUCKY 98
OHMWSTRN 48
 
1st OT
GTDNS 66
QUIN 69
 
Final
EMICH 70
UNCG 62
 
Final
ETST 98
UNCA 87
 
2nd
TEMPL 50
UNLV 57
 
Final
STJOE 68
VERM 60
 
Final
MON 65
CCST 50
 
2nd
KSU 76
ILLCH 53
 
2nd
FAIR 60
SHSU 72
 
2nd
LIP 61
TRANSYLVAN 49
 
2nd
FUR 55
UCD 57
 
2nd
WKENT 49
BEL 35
 
Half
NDST 35
HAMP 42
 
2nd
IND 52
LAM 42
 
2nd
TTU 42
MIZST 38
 
2nd
HOU 46
MRGST 32
 
2nd
NAVY 29
NE 45
 
2nd
ALAAM 51
OAKW 28
 
2nd
WILL 21
SELA 25
 
Half
TULA 44
SONO 21
 
2nd
TXPA 43
A 38
 
2nd
RICE 32
WMARY 42
 
1st
TXARL 36
HOUB 16
 
1st
MINN 26
UMBC 25
 
1st
UTEP 0
NMST 6
 
1st
GONZ 10
STTHOM 7
 
1st
SUTAH 1
WLVRN 4
 
9:30pm Tonight
PBY
MORE
9:30pm Tonight
DUKE
STAN
10:00pm Tonight
WISC
BSU
10:00pm Tonight
PORT
SIUE
Final
OTT 2
STL 3
3rd
WAS 1
BUF 1
 
3rd
PHI 4
CLB 2
 
3rd
TOR 1
DET 1
 
3rd
TAM 2
MIN 1
 
3rd
BOS 0
MON 2
 
3rd
NYI 2
PIT 1
 
2nd
NAS 0
FLA 0
 
1st Intermission
DAL 3
LOS 0
 
1st
COL 0
CAR 0
 
10:00pm Tonight
EDM
CHI
10:00pm Tonight
CAL
NJD
10:30pm Tonight
SJS
ARI
Final
NCCU 21
NCA 14