2017 Football Preview – AAC Conference – Bearcats
Looking for 2017 Cincinnati Bearcats predictions? The Bearcats had a rough 2016, going 4-8 and 1-7 in conference play. The poor season resulted in Tommy Tubberville getting the ax and longtime Ohio State defensive coach Luke Fickell getting the keys to program.
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- 2017-18 College Football Preview – Cincinnati Bearcats
- Head Coach: Luke Fickell
- 2016 Record: 4-8
- Cincinnati Bearcats Odds to win the 2017 FBS Championship: Off
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Can new head coach take the Bearcats talent to a bowl game?
2017 Cincinnati Bearcats Predictions: Team Strengths
Improved secondary: When you look at the Bearcats their defensive passing numbers should stand out. Last year they gave up just 18 touchdowns though the air and had 17 interceptions. These numbers were up from 2015 (24-9) and the depth of the unit will be key down the stretch.
I don’t see much any issues with them getting better as the new safeties coach was the former defensive coordinator, so the terminology should stay relatively the same.
Catching the ball shouldn’t be an issue: We will address the concerns on offense in a moment, but the receiving corps is deep and very talented.
Third team all-conference wide out Devin Gray should improve on last year’s numbers (58 rec, 860 yds, 5TD). If the Bearcats can get the QB position solidified he might flirt with a double digit touchdown season.
Also look for LSU transfer Avery Johnson to play a big role in the offense firing on all cylinders. If he can make an immediate impact the offense should be able to stay in games.
2017 Cincinnati Bearcats Predictions: Team Weaknesses
How poor will this running game be? The Bearcats running backs didn’t do anything on offense last year. They didn’t have a single player run for over 100 yards all season.
Those numbers are abysmal and there is nowhere to go but up for the unit. Mike Boone is the lead to start and he played in 9 games last season, averaging 6.4 yards per carry.
I don’t expect this offense to be conservative but he should have a handful of 20+ carry games.
The Bearcats have gone to a backup due to injury every year since 2005. That instability lead to a revolving door in 2016. Gunner Kiel, Hayden Moore, and Ross Trail all saw time under center.
This year Moore is clearly in the drivers seat, but I expect Trail and former Ohio St recruit Torrence Gibson to get some playing time as well.
The QB and RB positions will make or break the Bearcats year. If they can solidify those positions this should be a bowl eligible team.
Cincinnati Bearcats Prediction: 5-7
Cincinnati will lose a few close games and will just miss out on being bowl eligible.
The swing games for this season will be SMU, ECU, and Tulane.
If the QB position plays well the offense should average over 3 touchdowns per game.
2017 Cincinnati Bearcats Football Schedule
- 8/31/17 TBD AUPE
- 9/9/17 TBD @UM
- 9/16/17 TBD @MIAO
- 9/23/17 TBD @NAVY
- 9/30/17 TBD MARSH
- 10/07/17 TBD UCF
- 10/21/17 TBD SMU
- 10/28/17 TBD @USF
- 11/4/17 TBD @TUL
- 11/10/17 TBD TEM
- 11/18/17 TBD @ECU
- 11/25/17 TBD CONN
What do you think about our 2017 Cincinnati Bearcats predictions? Please leave us a comment below telling us how you think they’ll do in 2017!
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