The Central Florida Knights are in game week preparations for their season opener on Thursday when they host the Florida International Golden Panthers. Kickoff is slated for 6:00 p.m. at Spectrum Stadium.
UCF routed the Panthers in Boca Raton last season, 53-14, but Coach Scott Frost is not looking back as he prepares his team for this year’s game. He realizes opening games can be unpredictable, but he also understands the uncertainties exist for both teams.
“It’s impossible to get too much in when you haven’t had that much time,” Frost said on ucfknights.com. “I’m sure those coaches have their team ready, and we’re doing the best to have ourselves ready.”
A significant number of players should see action on Thursday for several reasons. Frost needs to develop a depth chart at every position and in-game situations are the best way to see who can play. He also strives to find ways for everyone to contribute.
“Every player on this team is valuable,” Frost said. “We try all the time to make every player from the first guy to the last guy on the roster feel like they are wanted and needed. The more those guys can embrace their role, the better team we’ll be.”
Frost must replace several starters on defense this year. Among those is defensive back Shaquill Griffin, who was selected in the third round by the Seattle Seahawks.
Among Frost’s touted recruits is freshman cornerback Antwan Collier out of Miami. He is one to watch on Thursday.
“He’s had a really good camp and is light years of where he was in the spring,” Frost said.
Among the returning players, Frost is impressed with the improvement of senior defensive lineman Seyvon Lowry from Jacksonville.
“He was a backup for us last year, but he’s really played well for us this fall,” said Frost. “Look for him to have an expanded role.”
CBS Sports Network will televise Thursday’s game.