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Scott Frost says UCF QB McKenzie Milton will ‘put on a show’ against Auburn

Scott Frost says UCF QB McKenzie Milton will ‘put on a show’ against Auburn

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ATLANTA — Scott Frost said Sunday he regards Central Florida quarterback McKenzie Milton like a son. Milton operated Frost’s spread no-huddle offense as if it ran in his veins, accounting for 42 total touchdowns and 4,292 total yards during the Knights’ 12-0 regular season.

The sophomore and UCF face their toughest test in Monday’s Peach Bowl. Auburn’s defense holds opponents to 17.3 points per game and finished with 36 sacks.

“He’ll put on a show,” Frost said. “He’s going to make some plays. We’ve got to protect him. We’ve got to run the ball a little bit to make sure they can’t tee off on us in the passing game.”

Frost called the 5-foot-11, 178-pound Milton a “special player” who took heat his freshman year as he was learning the offense.

“In one year, he turned into one of the better quarterbacks in college football,” Frost said.

Auburn coach Gus Malzahn praised his quarterback Jarrett Stidham, the former five-star recruit who transferred from Baylor after the school’s sexual-assault scandal.

“He really won his teammates’ respect early,” Malzahn said of Stidham, who threw for 2,827 yards and 17 touchdowns. “I think that’s really critical for a successful quarterback. ... You saw him getting better and better throughout the year. He was an experienced guy when he first got here and was really playing his best ball toward the end of the year, when we played some of the best opponents.”

Bits and pieces

» Auburn cornerback Carlton Davis, a second-team All-American, has an illness and will not play.

» According to 247Sports, Cedar Hill (Texas) Trinity running back Maurice Washington will visit Nebraska on Jan. 12. Washington is a consensus high-three-star prospect who is playing in the Under Armour All-America game.

» Bowl games aren’t about narratives, Frost said. They’re about matchups. And motivation.

“Bowl games are more about matchups than about anything — depends on what kind of matchup you get — and probably just as much about who’s motivated to be there and who’s not,” Frost said.

» Auburn’s front four will be the best — by some margin — UCF has faced this season. And the Knights will be moving left guard Jake Brown to left tackle, the spot vacated after senior Aaron Evans was injured — the 37-game starter just had surgery.

“I think the guys are excited for that, but they need to be physical,” Frost said. “A couple of them are going to have to grow up fast and play well in roles that they haven’t really spent a lot of time in. So let’s rock. Here we go.”


Omaha World-Herald: Local Sports

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