ORLANDO — Rob Calabrese strengthened his hold on Central Florida's starting quarterback job, completing his first nine passes and throwing for 176 yards and a touchdown Saturday in a 38-7 victory over South Dakota.
Calabrese, who held off true freshman Jeff Godfrey in a preseason competition, completed all nine of his passes for 140 yards and a score in a flawless first half.
The junior led drives of 75, 84 and 80 yards in the first half to help UCF to a 24-7 lead at halftime in the season opener for both teams.
UCF did mostly as it pleased offensively, grinding out 472 total yards and 27 first downs.
The Knights drove into South Dakota territory on each of their first eight drives and didn't punt for the first time until late in the third quarter.
Godfrey, the all-time leading passer in Miami-Dade County history, entered early in the second quarter to a loud ovation at Bright House Networks Stadium. The Miami native threw for 11 yards on his first college pass and later had a third-down conversion wiped out by a motion penalty. He re-entered in the fourth quarter and hit Quincy McDuffie from 6 yards for his first touchdown pass.
B-CU 70, EDWARD WATERS 10: Matt Johnson passed for two touchdowns and ran for another to lead host Bethune-Cookman over its NAIA opponent.
In their first game under coach Brian Jenkins, the Wildcats, of Division I-AA, gained 635 yards. Johnson carried four times for a career-best 122 yards and passed for 159 (9-for-11).
Jackie Wilson's 14-yard run gave Bethune-Cookman a 35-0 lead 8:05 before halftime. Edward Waters, a historically black college in Jacksonville, scored on Jacquez Stephenson's 24-yard touchdown from Brandon Turman on the final play of the first half.
JACKSONVILLE 35, OLD DOMINION 25: Josh McGregor threw for three touchdowns and Rudell Small added two on the ground for the visiting Dolphins. Small ran for a game-high 118 yards and McGregor completed 24 of 34 passes for 311 yards.