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CFB: Week 12 Conference Notes – American Athletic Conference (AAC)

THIS WEEK
THURSDAY, NOVEMBER 17
SMU at Tulane *
Time: 7:30 p.m.
Series: SMU leads, 15-13
Last Meeting: Oct. 21, 2021 (SMU, 55-26)

FRIDAY, NOVEMBER 18
South Florida at Tulsa *
Time: 9 p.m.
Series: South Florida leads, 3-2
Last Meeting: Oct. 16, 2021 (Tulsa, 32-31)

SATURDAY, NOVEMBER 19
Navy at UCF *
Time: 11 a.m.
Series: UCF leads, 2-11
Last Meeting: Oct. 2, 2021 (Navy, 34-30)

Houston at East Carolina *
Time: 2 p.m.
Series: Houston leads, 8-7
Last Meeting: Oct. 23, 2021 (Houston, 31-24)

North Alabama at Memphis
Time: 2 p.m.
Series: First meeting

Cincinnati at Temple *
Time: 4 p.m.
Series: Temple leads, 13-9-1
Last Meeting: Oct. 8, 2021 (Cincinnati, 52-3)

  • American Athletic Conference game
    All times Eastern

WEEKLY HONORS
OFFENSIVE PLAYER OF THE WEEK
John Rhys Plumlee • Sr. • QB • UCF
Plumlee led UCF to a 38-31 win at No. 17 Tulane, handing the Green Wave its first American Athletic Conference loss of the season and moving the Knights into a three-way tie atop the conference standings. Plumlee figured in 308 yards of total offense and three touchdowns as he rushed for a game-high 176 yards and two TDs and completed 17 of 30 passes and another score. Plumlee, who ranks fifth in The American in rushing (66.5 ypg), set UCF’s single-game rushing record for a quarterback.

DEFENSIVE PLAYER OF THE WEEK
Justin Wright • Sr. • LB • Tulsa
Wright had a game-high 13 tackles as Tulsa limited Memphis to two early touchdowns in a 26-10 loss to the Tigers. Wright added a sack, 2.5 tackles for loss, a forced fumble, a pass breakup and a quarterback hurry as the Golden Hurricane kept the Tigers out of the end zone for the final 44:04. Wright ranks sixth in The American in tackles at 8.4 stops per game.

SPECIAL TEAMS PLAYER OF THE WEEK
Chris Howard • Sr. • K • Memphis
Howard accounted for more than half of Memphis’ points as he scored 14 points in a 26-10 win against Tulsa. Howard went 4-for-4 on field goal attempts, connecting from 49, 31, 44 and 32 yards, and made both of his PAT kicks to provide the bulk of the scoring on a day in which the Tigers were limited to two offensive touchdowns. Howard has made 18 of his 20 field goal attempts this season and is The American’s leading scorer at 8.9 points per game.

HONOR ROLL
Tyler Scott • Jr. • WR • Cincinnati
Had seven receptions for 140 yards and a touchdown in a 27-25 win against East Carolina.

Jadon Thompson • Jr. • WR • Cincinnati
Had 157 all-purpose yards, including a 100-yard kickoff return for a touchdown, in a 27-25 win against
East Carolina.

Stacy Sneed • RFr. • RB • Houston
Rushed for 143 yards and two touchdowns on 11 carries in a 43-36 win against Temple.

Camar Wheaton • RFr. • RB • SMU
Rushed for 112 yards and two touchdowns on 14 carries in a 41-23 win at South Florida.

E.J. Warner • Fr. • QB • Temple
Set school records with 42 completions, 59 attempts and 486 passing yards with three TD passes in a
43-36 loss at Houston.

AMERICAN NOTEBOOK

Everyone Wins
Since the start of the 2014 season, all 11 American Athletic Conference teams have been ranked at least once in the Associated Press top 25 poll. The American, the ACC and the Big 12 are the only FBS conferences that have had each member ranked since 2014.

Conference Call
The American will finish the regular season with a combined 9-3 record against non-autonomous FBS conference opponents in 2022.

Rank And File
The American has three AP top-25 teams entering Week 12 (No. 17 UCF, No. 21 Tulane, No. 22 Cincinnati). The only other leagues with at least three ranked teams are the Pac-12 (six), the SEC (five), the Big Ten (three), the Big 12 (three) and the ACC (three).

Big Three
The American has three ranked teams for the 20th time since the conference’s formation in 2013. The last time that The American had at least three ranked teams was in 2019, when the conference had four teams (UCF, Cincinnati, Memphis, Navy) ranked in the final poll.

Play On
The American Athletic Conference will enter Week 12 of the season with six bowl-eligible teams (UCF, Cincinnati, Tulane, East Carolina, SMU, Houston). Memphis needs one win in its final two games to give The American seven bowl-eligible teams among its 11 members.

Giant Killers
UCF scored its eighth win against a top-25 team as a member of the American Athletic Conference with its victory against Tulane. The Knights are 2-0 against top-25 teams this season.

We Must Defend This House
Cincinnati has won 32 consecutive games at Nippert Stadium, trailing only Clemson (39) for the nation’s longest active home field winning streak. UCF has won 34 of its last 37 home games.

Musical Chairs
UCF, Cincinnati and Tulane are tied for first place in the American Athletic Conference standings with two weeks remaining in the regular season. UCF has wins against both Cincinnati and Tulane, while the Bearcats and Green Wave will play Friday, Nov. 25.

Gus’ House
UCF is unbeaten (7-0) in American Athletic Conference home games under Gus Malzahn.

Top Of The Charts
East Carolina QB Holton Ahlers has set The American’s career passing yards and total offense records. Houston QB Clayton Tune holds the conference’s career record for touchdown passes.

Career Passing Yards

  1. 13,131 Holton Ahlers, East Carolina (2018-)
  2. 10,946 Clayton Tune, Houston (2018-)
  3. 10,782 Dane Evans, Tulsa (2014-16)

Career Total Offense

  1. 14,541 Holton Ahlers, East Carolina (2018-)
  2. 12,418 Desmond Ridder, Cincinnati (2018-21)
  3. 12,066 Clayton Tune, Houston (2018-)

Career Touchdown Passes

  1. 95 Clayton Tune, Houston (2018-)
  2. 90 Brady White, Memphis (2018-20)
  3. 89 Holton Ahlers, East Carolina (2018-)

Top Of The Chart
Cincinnati head coach Luke Fickell’s 56 wins are a program record and the most by an American Athletic Conference coach since the league’s formation in 2013.

Three Grand
The American Athletic Conference has three of the six FBS players with at least 1,000 receiving yards this season. SMU WR Rashee Rice leads the nation with 1,167 yards, Tulsa WR Keylon Stokes is fourth with 1,032 yards, while Houston WR Nathaniel Dell is fifth with 1,017 yards.

Multi-Talented
Tulsa WR Keylon Stokes enters Friday’s game against Memphis with 5,270 career all-purpose yards, ranking second on The American’s career chart, and 3,582 receiving yards (fourth).

Career All-Purpose Yards

  1. 5,320 Malcolm Perry, Navy (2016-19)
  2. 5,270 Keylon Stokes, Tulsa (2018-)

Career Receiving Yards

  1. 3,949 James Proche, SMU (2016-19)
  2. 3,675 Zay Jones, East Carolina (2014-16)
  3. 3,590 Anthony Miller, Memphis (2015-17)
  4. 3,582 Keylon Stokes, Tulsa (2018-)

Pencil It In
Memphis QB Seth Henigan has thrown at least one touchdown pass in all 21 games of his collegiate career.

Record Collection
Temple QB E.J. Warner set the Owls’ single-game records for completions (42), attempts (59) and passing yards (486) against Houston last Saturday.

Flip The Field
Cincinnati P Mason Fletcher ranks second nationally in punting average (47.43), while Memphis P Joe Doyle is third (47.35).

Best Behavior
Navy is the least-penalized team in the nation. The Midshipmen average 3.4 penalties and 28.6 yards per game.

Line In The Sand
UCF ranks second nationally in red zone defense. The Knights have limited opponents to 65.9% effectiveness in the red zone.

Negative Outcomes
Cincinnati LB Ivan Pace Jr. is the national leader in tackles for loss at 1.9 per game. Pace has 19.0 tackles for loss in 2022.

Halfway There
Cincinnati LB Ivan Pace Jr. was chosen as an Midseason All-America selection by the Associated Press, Sporting News and The Athletic. SMU WR Rashee Rice was a second-team Midseason All-America choice of The Athletic.

Draft Cards
The American matched its best showing in the NFL Draft with 19 players selected in 2022. Two American players — Cincinnati CB Ahmad Gardner at No. 4 and Tulsa OT Tyler Smith at No. 24 — were chosen in the first round, while The American had 10 players taken in the first two days of the draft, surpassing the league’s previous high of six players.

Mark Your Calendars
Cincinnati’s selection to the CFP Semifinal in the 2021 season marked the seventh time in the nine-year history of The American that the league has had a team in a Bowl Championship Series or CFP New Year’s Six bowl.

The American in CFP/New Year’s Six Bowls
2013 UCF 52, Baylor 42 (Fiesta Bowl)
2015 Houston 38, Florida State 24 (Peach Bowl)
2017 UCF 34, Auburn 27 (Peach Bowl)
2018 LSU 40, UCF 32 (Fiesta Bowl)
2019 Penn State 53, Memphis 39 (Cotton Bowl)
2020 Georgia 24, Cincinnati 21 (Peach Bowl)
2021 Alabama 27, Cincinnati 6 (CFP Semifinal/Cotton Bowl)

TALKING POINTS
UCF
8-2, 5-1 American
@UCF_Football
Last: Won at Tulane, 38-31
Next: Nov. 19 vs. Navy (ESPN2)
American Ranks
Total Offense……………………………497.7 ……………………1st
Total Defense…………………………363.6 …………………..4th
Scoring Offense ……………………….35.9 …………………..3rd
Scoring Defense ………………………20.0 …………………. 2nd
• QB John Rhys Plumlee rushed for 176 yards — a school record for a quarterback — with two touchdowns and had 132 yards and a TD pass in the win against No. 17 Tulane.
• UCF improved to 39-5 all-time as a nationally ranked team and 13-1 when the Knights are ranked in the College Football Playoff top 25.
• The Knights defeated Tulane without three key defensive starters who were sidelined with injuries: S Divaad Wilson, S Quadric Bullard and LB Jeremiah Jean-Baptiste.
• UCF ranks second nationally in red zone defense (65.9%).
• UCF would host the American Athletic Conference Championship Game with wins in the Knights’ final two games.

CINCINNATI
8-2, 5-1 American
@BearcatsFB
Last: Defeated East Carolina, 27-25
Next: Nov. 19 at Temple (ESPNU)
American Ranks
Total Offense………………………….398.8 ………………….. 7th
Total Defense………………………….335.7 …………………. 2nd
Scoring Offense ……………………….32.6 …………………..6th
Scoring Defense ……………………….21.4 …………………..3rd
• WR Tyler Scott had seven receptions for 140 yards and a touchdown to lead Cincinnati’s offense against East Carolina.
• The Bearcats have won 32 consecutive games at Nippert Stadium, trailing only Clemson (39) for the nation’s longest home winning streak.
• WR Jadon Thompson became the 15th American Athletic Conference player to register a 100-yard kickoff return for a touchdown.
• Cincinnati ranks second nationally in net punting (46.5 yards per punt).
• Cincinnati is tied with UCF and Tulane for first place in the American Athletic Conference standings. The Bearcats have played in the
last three American championship games.

EAST CAROLINA
6-4, 3-3 American
@ECUPiratesFB
Last: Lost at Cincinnati, 27-25
Next: Nov. 19 vs. Houston (ESPN+)
American Ranks
Total Offense………………………….465.9 …………………..3rd
Total Defense…………………………382.9 …………………..6th
Scoring Offense ………………………..31.8 ………………….. 7th
Scoring Defense ………………………23.6 …………………..4th
• RB Keaton Mitchell rushed for 112 yards and a touchdown on 16 carries against Cincinnati, but the Pirates fell on the road.
• QB Holton Ahlers passed for 280 yards and two TDs against the Bearcats. Ahlers completed 26 of 46 passes against Cincinnati and set East
Carolina’s career completions record (1,061).
• WR C.J. Johnson had seven receptions for 123 yards and a TD against Cincinnati.
• Mitchell registered his fourth consecutive 100-yard game before leaving with an injury in the second half.
• The Pirates opened the scoring against Cincinnati with a safety in the first quarter. It was ECU’s first safety since Sept. 5, 2009.

HOUSTON
6-4, 4-2 American
@UHCougarFB
Last: Defeated Temple, 43-36
Next: Nov. 19 at East Carolina (ESPN+)
American Ranks
Total Offense…………………………..454.2 …………………..4th
Total Defense………………………….441.4 …………………..9th
Scoring Offense ………………………..37.4 …………………. 2nd
Scoring Defense ………………………36.2 …………………10th
• QB Clayton Tune threw three touchdown passes, including a 44-yard strike to WR Matthew Golden with 40 seconds left in the win against Temple.
• Tune extended his American Athletic Conference career record for touchdown passes (95).
• RB Stacy Sneed had 143 yards and two touchdowns on 11 carries against the Owls.
• WR Nathaniel Dell had 12 receptions for 98 yards and a touchdown against the Owls, giving him 25 receptions and three TD catches in the
Cougars’ last two games.
• Dell surpassed 1,000 receiving yards for the season (1,017) becoming only the third Houston player with at least two 1,000-yard seasons.

MEMPHIS
5-5, 3-4 American
@TigersAthletics
Last: Defeated Tulsa, 26-10
Next: Nov. 19 vs. North Alabama (ESPN+)
American Ranks
Total Offense……………………………411.6 …………………..6th
Total Defense………………………….391.5 ………………….. 7th
Scoring Offense ………………………..33.1 …………………..4th
Scoring Defense ……………………… 29.4 ………………….. 7th
• QB Seth Henigan passed for 262 yards and a touchdown and K Chris Howard made four field goals to lead Memphis to the win against Tulsa.
• The Tigers snapped a four-game slide with the win against Tulsa.
• Memphis limited the Golden Hurricane to 207 yards and 12 first downs while holding Tulsa to 3-for-15 on third down.
• Henigan has thrown at least one touchdown pass in all 21 games of his collegiate career.
• The Tigers host North Alabama Saturday in a bid to gain bowl eligibility.

NAVY
3-7, 3-5 American
@NavyAthletics
Last: Lost to Notre Dame, 35-32
Next: Nov. 19 at UCF (ESPN2)
American Ranks
Total Offense………………………….339.0 ………………….11th
Total Defense………………………….360.1 …………………..3rd
Scoring Offense ………………………. 22.9 …………………10th
Scoring Defense ……………………… 25.8 …………………..5th
• Navy outscored No. 20 Notre Dame 19-0 in the second half, but the Midshipmen were unable to overcome an early deficit.
• FB Daba Fofana rushed for 133 yards and a touchdown on 15 carries against the Fighting Irish. Fofana led an offense that rushed for 255 yards.
• QB Xavier Arline passed for 57 yards and a touchdown, while QB Maasai Maynor had 51 passing yards with a TD against the Irish.
• LB Colin Ramos had seven tackles with 1.5 sacks and 2.0 tackles for loss against Notre Dame.
• Navy had an 18-15 advantage in first downs and a 363-335 edge in total offense against Notre Dame.

SOUTH FLORIDA
1-9, 0-6 American
@USFFootball
Last: Lost to SMU, 41-23
Next: Nov. 18 at Tulsa (ESPN2)
American Ranks
Total Offense…………………………..375.3 …………………..9th
Total Defense………………………….507.9 ………………….11th
Scoring Offense ………………………..25.5 …………………..9th
Scoring Defense ………………………40.0 ………………….11th
• RB Brian Battie rushed for 145 yards on 26 carries, but the Bulls were unable to keep pace with SMU in the second half.
• The game against SMU was the first for Daniel Da Prato as the Bulls’ interim head coach.
• QB Katravis Marsh passed for 178 yards and a touchdown against SMU before leaving the game due to injury.
• LB Dwayne Boyles had a team-high nine tackles against SMU and stands three tackles shy of 300 stops for his career.
• The Bulls take an eight-game losing streak into Friday’s game at Tulsa.

SMU
6-4, 4-2 American
@SMU_Football
Last: Won at South Florida, 41-23
Next: Nov. 17 at Tulane (ESPN)
American Ranks
Total Offense………………………….486.4 …………………. 2nd
Total Defense…………………………446.0 …………………10th
Scoring Offense ……………………….40.3 ……………………1st
Scoring Defense ………………………32.6 …………………..9th
• RB Camar Wheaton, a transfer from Alabama, had career highs with 14 carries, 113 rushing yards and two touchdown runs in the win at South Florida.
• RB Tyler Lavine gave the Mustangs two 100- yard rushers against South Florida with 112 yards on 17 carries.
• WR Jordan Kerley had seven receptions for 156 yards and a touchdown against the Bulls. WR Rashee Rice had six catches for 99 yards and a TD.
• SMU outscored South Florida 24-6 in the second half to pull away from what had been a 17-17 game at halftime.
• SMU sits a game behind the three American Athletic Conference leaders with two games remaining.

TEMPLE
3-7, 1-5 American
@Temple_FB
Last: Lost at Houston, 43-36
Next: Nov. 19 vs. Cincinnati (ESPNU)
American Ranks
Total Offense…………………………. 342.9 …………………10th
Total Defense…………………………..377.2 …………………..5th
Scoring Offense ………………………..21.4 ………………….11th
Scoring Defense ……………………….27.9 …………………..6th
• QB E.J. Warner set school records with 42 completions, 59 attempts and 486 passing yards to go with three touchdown passes in the loss at Houston.
• Warner has passed for 830 yards and five touchdowns in Temple’s last two games.
• WR Jose Barbon had eight receptions for 128 yards for his fifth 100-yard game of the season.
• TE David Martin-Robinson had 10 receptions for 114 yards and a touchdown, giving the Owls two 100-yard receivers against Houston.
• Temple has scored on 16 of its last 18 drives that did not end a half.

TULANE
8-2, 5-1 American
@GreenWaveFB
Last: Lost to UCF, 38-31
Next: Nov. 17 vs. SMU (ESPN)
American Ranks
Total Offense…………………………..415.9 …………………..5th
Total Defense………………………….323.4 ……………………1st
Scoring Offense ………………………..32.7 …………………..5th
Scoring Defense ……………………….19.0 ……………………1st
• QB Michael Pratt passed for 236 yards and three touchdowns and added a rushing TD in the loss to No. 22 UCF.
• The Green Wave saw a five-game winning streak end with the loss to UCF. It was Tulane’s longest winning streak since 1998.
• RB Tyjae Spears rushed for 130 yards on only eight carries against UCF. Spears turned in his fourth consecutive game with at least 100 rushing yards.
• LB Dorian Williams had 13 tackles with a forced fumble and two pass breakups against the Knights.
• The Green Wave enters Week 12 in a three-way tie with UCF and Cincinnati in the American Athletic Conference standings. Tulane faces Cincinnati Nov. 25 to close the regular season.

TULSA
3-7, 1-5 American
@TulsaFootball
Last: Lost at Memphis, 26-10
Next: Nov. 18 vs. South Florida (ESPN2)
American Ranks
Total Offense………………………….393.8 …………………..8th
Total Defense…………………………396.6 …………………..8th
Scoring Offense ………………………. 28.2 …………………..8th
Scoring Defense ……………………… 32.5 …………………..8th
• Tulsa was limited to 31 rushing yards and 207 total yards in the loss at Memphis.
• WR Keylon Stokes had six receptions for 68 yards and a touchdown against Memphis, extending his program record to 3,582 receiving yards, good for fourth on the American Athletic Conference career chart.
• LB Justin Wright had 13 tackles with 2.5 tackles for loss, a sack, a forced fumble, a pass breakup and a quarterback hurry against the
Tigers.
• QB Braylon Braxton went 12-for-24 for 128 yards and a touchdown off the bench against Memphis.
• Tulsa has dropped six of its last seven games after a 2-1 start to the season.

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