Heading into week three of college football the University of Central Florida sports a very disappointing 0-2 record. Stumbling against a historically weak Florida International team 15-14, then crushed against a surprisingly lackluster Stanford team 31-7, is not the start UCF was looking for. The previous three UCF seasons have been stellar including multiple bowl appearances, a huge BCS bowl win and even a top 10 ranking in the national sports polls. This year was the audition to the power conferences after being thrust into the national spotlight, but UCF has not shown up.
It began with a blocked field goal attempt. Florida International players rushed the field in celebration as the Knights walked off the field stunned. Maybe this was just a fluke? A slow start to the season or a case of not taking their opponent serious enough. In reality this was just the beginning of UCF’s already problematic season. UCF’s starting quarterback would be injured during the opening minutes of their match-up against Stanford University, forcing head coach George O’Leary to experiment with who could fill his place. Redshirt Freshman Tyler Harris seemed to fit the bill completing 7 of 15 passes for 96 yards and a touchdown, but his debut came far too late in the fourth quarter. By the time Harris was chosen to take the field Stanford had already rolled through UCF’s defense to a 31-0 lead.
UCF had its eyes on joining a power conference at the conclusion of this season. This was supposed to be the big year. They would dominate a fairly easy schedule, perhaps only losing to one of the two power conference teams they play and then find themselves in the mix of joining the Big 12 conference. Yet for now UCF desperately needs to pick up the pieces and put on a huge performance vs Furman on September 19th.