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Memphis vs. Central Florida football: Time, TV, game preview, live score

UCF defense is tied for 12th in the nation in scoring defense

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(Getty Images)


ORLANDO – A pair of top-rated quarterbacks will lead their respective undefeated teams Saturday when Central Florida hosts Memphis in the American Athletic Conference opener for both teams, a game that was rescheduled after the Sept. 9 meeting was postponed because of Hurricane Irma.

UCF sophomore Milton McKenzie leads the conference in total offense at 318 yards per game while Memphis senior Riley Ferguson ranks third in passing, averaging 261 yards.

McKenzie enters the weekend ranked third in the nation at 10.55 yards per pass attempt while posting a 183.7 passer rating, sixth in FBS. The sophomore from Mililani, Hawaii, has completed 67 percent of his passes in the first two games with five touchdowns and one interception.

Ferguson, a second year starter as well, has guided a Tigers’ offense that has scored at least 37 points in each of the first three games this season. For that trend to continue, he’ll have to solve a UCF defense that is tied for 12th in the nation in scoring defense (13.5) and has allowed only four third-down conversions in 25 tries this season.

TV: 7 p.m. ET, ESPN2. LINE: UCF -4

Live score updates below:

 

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UCF (2-0):

The Knights’ running attack took a big hit during last week’s victory at Maryland when starting tailback Jawon Hamilton was lost for this season after undergoing surgery on his leg Monday. That leaves UCF leaning on junior Taj McGowan, who recorded his first career multi-touchdown game last time out, and Adrian Killins as the tandem vying for playing time moving forward. Killins, a sophomore, scored four times as a freshman last season, including an 87-yard run at Michigan to tie the record for longest run from scrimmage in school history.

MEMPHIS (3-0):

The Tigers' defense lost three starters in the season-opening victory against Louisiana-Monroe - linebacker Jackson Dillon, nose tackle Jared Gentry and linebacker Darian Porter – while starting cornerback Tim Gordon was lost to injury during practice. The latest to suffer a significant setback is senior safety Shaun Rupert, who was injured in last weekend’s victory against Southern Illinois and left the stadium on crutches. “This has just been crazy bad luck, in a sense," Memphis coach Mike Norvell told The Commercial Appeal. "The issues that we’ve had have nothing to do with training; we haven’t had many muscle injuries. It’s just truly freak injuries.’’

EXTRA POINTS

1. Central Florida leads the series 9-1, winning nine straight meetings from 2005-2013 after losing the first encounter in 1990.

2. Memphis WR Tony Pollard has returned two kickoff returns for TDs this season, giving him four in his career.

3. Tigers WR Phil Mayhue has caught a pass in 31 consecutive games, the second-longest streak in school history.