AAC Football

AAC Aftermath 2017: Season Finale Edition

The regular season drew to a close this past week for college football. But while headlines were a glow around Pitt beating Miami or Auburn toppling another No.1 in Alabama, it was the 2017 edition of the War on I-4 featuring No.23 (AP) USF facing No.12 (AP) UCF that turned the most heads. A contest I declared in the previous Aftermath as the “Game of the Week” in the American Athletic Conference (AAC).

It up being the dubbed “Game of the Year” by many.

The 49-42 shootout ended when the Knights’ Mike Hughes took a kickoff to the house immediately following the Bulls two-point conversion that tied the score at 42. The epic victory sets the Black-and-Gold to win the East Division and host the No.16 (AP) Memphis Tigers for the AAC Championship.

The Tigers already had the West locked up two weeks ago. That being said, they dominated East Carolina even with nothing to play for.   A 70-13 plank-walking of the Pirates certainly added a punctuation mark to that fact.  That aside, give credit to the West division as a whole.  There are four schools of the seven AAC bowl-eligible programs that reign from the West Division.

For the final 2017 AAC  Player of the Week honors, I’m not exactly sure how you don’t give it to UCF cornerback Mike Hughes.  In addition to his contribution on defense with an interception at the end of the first half, Hughes recorded 153 all-purpose yards on returns that featured the 93-yard streak to the endzone that not only sealed the victory over USF, but completed an undefeated regular season for the Knights as well as a berth into the AAC Championship.

The Defensive Player of the Week honor goes to defensive tackle Ed Oliver of the Houston Cougars.  Oliver posted a career-high of 14 tackles.  That’s a number that a linebacker would covet.  The big man in the middle’s presence certainly blockaded the Navy’s triple-option offense, holding the Midshipmen to a season-low 291 yards on offense.  Credit to the Cougs for finishing strong in their 21-14 win in an exhilarating undercard to the War on I-4.

Lastly, the two field generals who commanded their squads in the War on I-4 shared the award for Offensive Player of the Week.  USF’s Quinton Flowers may have had fewer points on the board at the end of the game, but he recorded 605 all-purpose with five total TDs on the night.  UCF’s Mckenzie Milton made his presence known as well, accounting for five total trips for six while also contributing 429 all-purpose yards.

The AAC Championship Game is set to start at Noon EST on Dec.2 where UCF will host Memphis at Spectrum Stadium.

 

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  1. Pingback: The CFP Demands Knights Have An Out Of Conference Experience - NGSC Sports

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