The Final: South Florida 58, UMass 42
The Goat: Run Defense AGAIN (8.9 Yards/ Rush)
The Stat: 365 Rushing Yards Allowed
The Streak: L2
The Record: 2-5
The 12-Game Pace: 3-9
Groundhog Day. After strong first-half performance from UMass, Cronkrite (302 Yards, 3 TD) runs loose as Minutemen defense implodes yet again
Offense: B+ First Half, C- Second Half
Andrew Ford led the Minuteman offense as the game’s initial starting quarterback, completing 19 of 27 passes, while registering 199 yards, two touchdown passes, and one interception. Ross Comis, later entered the game for Ford, by throwing two touchdown passes and registering 172 passing yards. Former JUCO Quarterback, and Texas Native, Michael Curtis shined in his limited role, completing both of his passing attempts, and registering both a passing and rushing touchdown.
What would this Minuteman offense look like without the work of Senior, Andy Isabella? It was another huge night for the Mayfield, Ohio native, who continued his strong play against Ohio University by recording a career-high in receptions. Isabella’s receptions combined for 191 yards, scoring 1 touchdown on the afternoon.
After only rushing for 85 yards the entire game, the Minuteman rush-attack was once-again lackluster, and way under-par. Backup quarterback, Ross Comis led the offense with 50 yards rushing. It was another quiet night for RB Jordan Fredericks, who has been inconsistent the last couple of weeks.
Defense: B+ First Half, D- Second Half
On the opposing side of the ball, the defensive line had a strong first half. After allowing South Florida to score on the first play of the game, who registered a 72-yard passing completion, we rebounded swiftly. Graduate Linebacker, Bryton Barr intercepted a throw down the middle of the field from Blake Barnett, and returned the interception for 53 yards to the USF 13 yard line.
The Minuteman defense had great difficulty preventing the South Florida rush-heavy offense, reminiscent of their performance against Georgia Southern and Ohio University, for the majority of the second half of the game. Jordan Cronkrite recorded 302 rushing yards and three touchdowns for USF, setting collegiate football records.
To highlight the few and far between gameday positives on defense, Senior Linebacker, Jarell Addell complimented the defensive effort, tallying key stops and recording 12 tackles. Graduate Linebacker, Bryton Barr added another strong game to his season by recording a sack, and an interception, helping to compliment his 8 tackles.
Special Teams: B- First Half, D- Second Half
Special Teams was not overly effective Saturday afternoon. Cooper Garcia accurately completed all 6 of his attempted extra points, but failed to attempt an in-game field goal. The punting duties were split by George Georgopoulos and Travis Reynolds. The man of all trades, Andy Isabella, returned in-game punts. The trio of Marquis Young, Samuel Emilus, and Bilal Ally split kickoff return duties for the Minuteman. Young did not appear comfortable in this role this week, fumbling the ball on two kickoff returns.
Mark Whipple and the Minuteman will have their bye-week this upcoming Saturday. This could not have come at a better time for UMass, who is looking to improve upon all structural elements of their game. UMass will return home to McGuirk Alumni Stadium on Saturday, October 20th for what appears to be a very winnable game against Coastal Carolina. Pack McGuirk! Game-time is 3:30! Game can be seen on Eleven Sports.