UCF, Tulsa punch tickets for CUSA Championship Game
Sunday, November 25th, 2007
Following a wild and wacky season in Conference USA, it was only appropriate that there be suspense on the final weekend of play. However, in the end, UCF and Tulsa took care of business and assured themselves that they’ll meet on Saturday, December 1 st in the league’s title game.
The Knights, who are playing their first season at Brighthouse Networks Stadium—their new on-campus stadium, will host the event in Orlando. It is slated for a noon kickoff and will be televised nationally on ESPN.
This marks the third season that CUSA has had a championship game since it went the divisional format prior to the 2005 campaign. These two programs met in the initial contest in 2005 and the Golden Hurricane came away with a 44-27 win at the Citrus Bowl in Orlando.
UCF (9-3, 7-1) has won six straight since their mid-season loss to rival South Florida and can post the program’s first ten-win season since 1990 with a victory over Tulsa this Saturday. The Knights pulled away from UTEP late to post a 36-20 win and lock up the Eastern Division crown.
Tulsa (9-3, 6-2) is also streaking. The Golden Hurricane has won five consecutive contests since their 44-23 loss to the Knights in Orlando back on October 20 th. Todd Graham’s club survived a shootout against his former team Rice—winning 48-43 in Houston on Saturday.
The game will feature two of the league’s top offense players in Tulsa senior quarterback Paul Smith and UCF junior running back Kevin Smith.
The Golden Hurricane’s Smith, who leads the league’s top offense, has set single-season CUSA records in total yards (4,450), passing yards (4,327), and passing touchdowns (39). He threw for 316 yards and three touchdowns on a career-high 56 attempts in the first match-up against UCF.
The Knights’ Smith has rushed for 2,164 yards and 26 touchdowns (1 st nationally). In the first contest against Tulsa, he ran for 170 yards and four scores.CUSA-Fans.com will provide an in-depth preview of the Conference USA football championship game on Wednesday.