2017 Prespring Rankings: No. 94 Cincinnati Bearcats
The 2017 prespring college football rankings, taking the first look at the Cincinnati Bearcats
No. 94: Cincinnati Bearcats
Cincinnati Bearcats Prespring Status
Starting out 2-0 with a win at Purdue, and with a 3-1 start, all looked right with the world. But the Bearcats lost seven of their last eight games with the offense going in the tank. How bad did things get? There was a run of five games in six when the O scored 13 points or fewer, and with four of those games scoring single-digit points.
But now there’s a new change and a new push with former Ohio State head man Luke Fickell taking over, and showing right away what he could do on the recruiting trail with a solid local haul. This spring, he has to gear up the offense again, has to work his magic on defense, and do it while replacing a whole slew of starters. Good luck.
Cincinnati Bearcats Biggest Issue
Most of the linebackers need to be replaced. The offensive line loses a few key parts, leading rusher Tion Green is gone, and big-hitting safety Zach Edwards is done. But the linebackers are gone, starting with leading tackler Eric Wilson, and without Antonio Kinard and Mike Tyson. Fickell should be able to find playmakers among the new main me. Jaylyin Minor is a good one, and Kevin Mouhon is a strong end who could work as a tweener, but the run D will miss the veterans.
Cincinnati Bearcats Biggest Positive
The passing game should be great. Devin Gray and Kahlil Lewis were two of the main men, and there’s good promise among the young guys who waited their turn in the spotlight. Gunner Kiel might be gone, but Hayden Moore is back after looking strong when he got his chances. He’ll have to battle a bit with Ohio State transfer Torrance Gibson, but it doesn’t matter who’s under center, the passing attack should be solid again.
Really, Why Are The Cincinnati Bearcats Ranked Here?
Fickell was the right coaching get for the program, but it might take a little bit to get back into the conference title hunt. However, if the offense can do anything other than just throw for some yards, and if the defense can improve a bit, being two games better and getting to a bowl isn’t that big a push. However, there are enough losses and enough concerns to boost the Bearcats much higher going into spring.