Make us your home page
Instagram

Get the quickest, smartest news, analysis and photos from the Bucs game emailed to you shortly after the final whistle.

(View our Privacy Policy)

No. 8 Cincinnati pulls off another smooth QB switch after Tony Pike is hurt vs. No. 21 USF

TAMPA — If there's a team used to recovering from losing a quarterback, it's Cincinnati.

Thursday's example was sophomore backup Zach Collaros, who stepped in for injured starter Tony Pike and helped lead the No. 8 Bearcats to a 34-17 victory over USF.

Last season Pike stepped in when the Bearcats' Dustin Grutza went down with an injury, and he led them to the Big East championship and an Orange Bowl appearance.

Thursday, Pike left the game in the third quarter after a plate in his left wrist slid out of place, said Cincinnati coach Brian Kelly. Collaros stepped in and made big plays

"Zach Collaros came in and did what we asked him to do except for one time when he tried to do a little too much," Kelly said. "He's a gamer. … And we did what we had to do."

Collaros helped manage the offense in Pike's absence, Kelly said, adding a big run and two rushing touchdowns and throwing only one interception.

Collaros, who had only one rushing attempt this season entering the game, finished with 132 yards rushing in a quarter and a half, including a 75-yard touchdown run that gave the Bearcats a 31-17 lead early in the fourth quarter.

"We got the play in, and the offensive line opened a big hole and (running back) Jake Ramsey crushed the linebacker," Collaros said. "I rode him and split two and tried not to get caught."

Collaros, who also had 72 yards passing, said he was recruited to Cincinnati by now-USF defensive coordinator Joe Tresey, who spent the past two seasons with the Bearcats, and he is used to seeing his defenses.

"I said hello to him before the game," Collaros said. "We're from the same neck of the woods (in Ohio). … I was on the scout team for two years, so I went against him a lot."

The only mistake Collaros made was late in the third quarter, when he was hit by USF defensive end Jason Pierre-Paul during a throw, which landed in the hands of safety Nate Allen. The interception set up a 1-yard quarterback sneak by B.J. Daniels to cut Cincinnati's lead to 24-17.

Kelly said Collaros was prepared to step in to help the Bearcats to a big win, which ties them atop the Big East standings with Pittsburgh: "Zach gets work during the week, and we had enough in there for him to be successful against a very good defense."

No. 8 Cincinnati pulls off another smooth QB switch after Tony Pike is hurt vs. No. 21 USF 10/16/09 [Last modified: Friday, October 16, 2009 12:40am]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times

    

Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

Loading...
  1. Tampa lawyer Fred Ridley to be new chairman of Augusta National, Masters' home (w/ video)

    Golf

    AUGUSTA, Ga. — Fred Ridley first came to Augusta National to compete in the 1976 Masters as the U.S. Amateur champion, and he played the opening round in the traditional pairing with the defending champion, Jack Nicklaus.

  2. Rays send down Chase Whitley, Andrew Kittredge; add Chih-Wei Hu, acitvate Alex Cobb

    Blogs

    After having to cover more than five innings following a short start by Austin Pruitt, the Rays shuffled their bullpen following Wednesday's game, sending down RHPs Chase Whitley and Andrew Kittredge,

    The Kittredge move was expected, as he was summoned to add depth to the pen Wednesday in advance of RHP Alex …

  3. MLB commissioner Rob Manfred moves closer to wanting a decision on Rays stadium

    The Heater

    ST. PETERSBURG — Major League Baseball commissioner Rob Manfred called Wednesday for urgency from Tampa Bay area government leaders to prioritize and move quicker on plans for a new Rays stadium.

    MLB Commissioner Rob Manfred talks with reporters at Tropicana Field in St. Petersburg, Fla. on Wednesday, Aug. 23, 2017.
  4. Marc Topkin's takeaways from Wednesday's Rays-Blue Jays game

    The Heater

    The Austin Pruitt experiment might be over, or at least put on pause. After allowing six runs over seven innings to Seattle on Friday, the rookie didn't get through the fourth Wednesday, giving up five runs on four homers. His ERA for past six starts: 5.29.

  5. Six home runs doom Rays in loss to Blue Jays (w/video)

    The Heater

    ST. PETERSBURG — A curve that didn't bounce was the difference Wednesday as the Rays lost 7-6 to the Blue Jays in front of 8,264, the smallest Tropicana field crowd since Sept. 5, 2006.

    Tampa Bay Rays shortstop Adeiny Hechavarria (11) greets center fielder Kevin Kiermaier (39) at the plate after his two run home run in the third inning of the game between the Toronto Blue Jays and the Tampa Bay Rays at Tropicana Field in St. Petersburg, Fla. on Wednesday, Aug. 23, 2017.