PHILADELPHIA (AP) — Jacob Dingel and Bryon Threats intercepted passes, Noah Potter and Dontay Corleone recovered fumbles and No. 22 Cincinnati beat Temple 23-3 on Saturday to move closer to the American Athletic Conference championship game.
Cincinnati (9-2, 6-1) can guarantee a berth in its fourth straight conference title game with a win in its regular-season finale Friday against Tulane, with whom it is presently tied atop the standings.
The Bearcats could still get into the title game on Dec. 3, depending on how Central Florida — which was upset by Navy on Saturday — fares against South Florida. This is the final year in the AAC for Cincinnati, with the Bearcats moving to the Big 12.
A week after quarterback E.J. Warner — the son of Pro Football Hall of Famer Kurt Warner — set a school record for passing yards with 486 yards and had three TD passes for Temple (3-8, 1-6) in a 43-36 loss at Houston, Cincinnati got the four turnovers and held the rushing attack to 35 yards.
The Bearcats turned those four turnovers into 10 points. It was enough to give the offense enough of a lift to overcome a first-half injury to starting quarterback Ben Bryant. Bryant was replaced by sophomore quarterback Evan Prater, who could not get Cincinnati into the end zone.
Bryant finished 9 for 18 for 130 yards and a 42-yard touchdown pass to Tre Tucker in the first quarter. Ryan Montgomery had a 14-yard touchdown run to begin the second quarter after a fumble by Temple running back Edward Saydee. Montgomery rushed 14 times for 58 yards.
Prater was 12 of 17 for 127 yards.
Warner was 21 for 36 for 167 yards with two interceptions.
Cincinnati: Hosts Tulane on Friday.
Temple: Hosts East Carolina on Saturday.
AP college football: https://apnews.com/hub/college-football and https://twitter.com/AP_Top25. Sign up for the AP’s college football newsletter: https://apnews.com/cfbtop25