Malzahn said Keene’s confidence never wavered despite losing the quarterback battle to Plumlee in the offseason. He continued to practice as if he were going to be the starting quarterback each week.
“For him to step up in that moment and seize the moment on that last drive, that dude’s a winner with a capital ‘W,’” Malzahn said. “We’re walking in at halftime he said ‘Coach, I got your back,’ that’s just who the guy is.”
Keene was 7-3 as a starter last season, but lost to Cincinnati, 56-21. … UCF’s last win over a ranked opponent was in 2018, a 38-13 win over No. 19 Cincinnati.
Cincinnati: Outside of Montgomery’s touchdown run, the Bearcats couldn’t get anything established on the ground.
“Sometimes things aren’t going well and you have to find other ways to get it done,” Fickell said. “They forced us to throw the ball more, but that’s not how we want to play.”
UCF: Keene’s experience from starting 10 games last year as a true freshman proved to be invaluable. He walked into a tough situation, but one he was familiar with. Keene put together his best drive of the day when the Knights needed it most and kept UCF in contention for the conference championship.
Cincinnati: Hosts Navy next Saturday.
UCF: At Memphis next Saturday.
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