QB Rob Calabrese early strong start leads Central Florida in a 38-7 win against South Dakota

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 in a 38-7 over South Dakota on Saturday.

Calabrese, who held off true freshman Jeff Godfrey in a preseason quarterback competition, completed all nine of his passes for 140 yards and a score in a flawless first half.

Calabrese 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.

Calabrese threw incomplete on his first attempt of the second half. The junior, who was a part-time starter each of the past two seasons, completed 12 of 15 passes for the game. He also flattened South Dakota cornerback Aaron Swift on a third quarter scramble.

UCF did mostly as it pleased offensively, grinding out 472 total yards and 27 first downs.