2. Lack of Pressure on Plumlee
The hole in UCF’s offense in the last two seasons has unquestionably been the up-and-down passing game. As consistent as Plumlee is as a runner, he’s not always reliable as a thrower. The good thing for UCF? Oklahoma State doesn’t have the most dominant pass rush.
The Cowboys rank just 60th in the nation in sacks, averaging just 2.2 per game over nine contests. It’s not a poor unit, but it’s not elite.
On paper, UCF’s pass protection doesn’t look elite either, having given up 17 sacks in 2023, but most of those didn’t happen to Plumlee. Timmy McClain, with his propensity to hold onto the ball for too long, was sacked ten times in just four games.
Plumlee, the much more experienced quarterback, has proven much better at taking what the defense gives him. He’s still made his fair share of mistakes, but with the aforementioned advantage on the ground, he shouldn’t be forced into too many high-pressure throwing situations.
This game specifically is about the matchups, and the UCF offense matches up well against the Oklahoma State defense. When that is the case, and Plumlee is on, big things happen.