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Buffalo State football live blog

Buffalo State and The College of New Jersey will kicking off in about 20 minute at Coyer Field. The Bengals, at 1-5, are looking for their first home win of the season while TCNJ is 2-4 and coming off a 30-6 win at Morrisville.

While the Lions have won the last three meetings between the two schools, the Bengals have played better as of late. They set numerous school records two weeks ago in a 71-3 win at Western Connecticut State and played well in a 35-20 loss at Montclair State -- the undefeated leader of the New Jersey Athletic Conference.

Check back for updates throughout the game.

Pregame: Today marks the beginning of inauguration week at Buffalo State as the eighth president of the college, Dr. Aaron Podolefsky, will be officially installed this week. To celebrate, admission to today's game is free.

First quarter

9:56 TCNJ drove 63 yards but a stance by the Bengals defense inside the 10 held the Lions to a field goal. Tyler Olsson hit a 22-yarder for a 3-0 lead. Buffalo State's run defense needs to get bette quickly -- Joe Flaco ran for 55 yards in that opening drive.

6:40 The Lions turned an interception into points when James Donoghue hit a wide open William Friedrich for a 49-yard TD pass play. With the extra point, TCNJ jumps out to a 10-0 lead.

4:35 And the Bengals strike back. With a short field thanks to a penalty on the kickoff, Buffalo State drove 50 yards, capping the drive with a 10-yard TD pass from Ryan Lehotsky to Rob Smith. Key play in the drive: a 24-yard pass play between Lehotsky and Jarrett Smith to put the Bengals on the 10. A successful two-point conversion makes the score 10-8.

End of the first quarter: TCNJ leads, 10-8. Buffalo State is driving and will start the second with a first down on the Lions' 25-yard line. The Bengals passing game is starting to connect.

Second quarter

13:14 A 2-yard touchdown run by Greg Spears and a point-after kick by Nick Debbins gives the Bengals a 15-10 lead. Lehotsky has 89 yards passing already, completing 8 of his 11 passes while Spears has 33 yards on the ground.

4:34 TCNJ drove down the field with ease -- until they got to the red zone. Buffalo State again held the Lions to a field goal with Olsson hitting a 26-yarder to cut the Bengals lead to 15-13.

3:38 A miscue on the kickoff by the Bengals gave them the ball at the TCNJ 2-yard line. With three downs of no gain, Buffalo State had to punt giving the Lions the ball on the Bengals 25-yard line.

0:31 And the original fielding error comes back to haunt the Bengals. Quarterback James Donoghue rushed 10 yards for a TD. The point after gives the Lions a 20-15 lead. 

Halftime TCNJ leads, 20-15. Enter the red zone, come away with points. The Lions are 3-for-3 in the red zone while the Bengals are 2-2. TCNJ has a huge advantage in time of possession -- 19:38 to 10:22 -- keeping the Buffalo State defense on the field.

To get the win, Buffalo State needs to limit mental mistakes which have given the Lions short fields to work with.

Third quarter

11:20 Cue the rain at Coyer Field. Bengals driving. This may affect their passing game.

4:58 Another miscue on a kick and more points for TCNJ. The Lions were punting and Jarrett Smith was back deep to receive. He muffled the catch and the ball rolled backward into the endzone. Patrick Chirchirillo recovered the ball in the endzone for a TD. With the extra point, TCNJ extends its lead to 27-15.

Fourth quarter

14:52 An interception of Lehotsky by Gregory Burns on the first play of the quarter gives TCNJ the ball on Buffalo State's 18-yard line.

13:48 Three plays laster the Lions score on a 5-yard run by Falco. The lead grows to 34-15.

13:37 This time, the big play off the kick off went to Buffalo State. Mike Doherty returned the kickoff 85-yards for a TD. The point after kick was good and the Bengals stay in the game, trailing 34-22.

10:24 TCNJ responds. A 44-yard run by Falco and the PAT makes it 41-22.

9:20 Things continue to go south for the Bengals -- another interception thrown by Lehotsky.

1:16 Falco fumbles on 3rd-and-goal, but recovers his own drop in the end zone. Another score for the Lions, up 48-22. And so continues the dismal fourth quarter for the Bengals.

0:14 Bengals add a final score for good measure -- a run by Spears. The PAT is good for a 48-29 score.

Final: TCNJ 48, Buffalo State 29

It was another case of Buffalo State beating itself. The Bengals had too many miscues, particularly on kickoffs, which gave The College of New Jersey plenty of opportunities. Credit the Lions for taking advantage of them. The Bengals did good things but again lacked consistency and focus.

Buffalo State falls to 1-6 while TCNJ improves to 3-4.

See Sunday's edition of The Buffalo News for more details.

--- Amy Moritz

Bulls to start Zordich vs. Temple

UB coach Jeff Quinn announced Friday evening that his starter at quarterback for Saturday’s game against Temple will be true freshman Alex Zordich.

After sophomore Jerry Davis struggled last week at Northern Illinois, Quinn decided to allow Davis and Zordich compete for the position this week in practice with both receiving equal reps.

A 6-foot-3, 219-pounder from Youngstown, Ohio, Zordich entered last Saturday’s game against Northern Illinois on UB’s final drive from its own 29 with 4:27 remaining. He moved the team to the Northern Illinois 17 before time expired and completed 2 of 3 passes for 19 yards, including deep out pass of 12 yards to Fred Lee. He also displayed the ability to pull the ball and run while finishing with 23 yards with a long of eight.

Zordich’s Cardinal Mooney High School team finished a perfect 15-0 last season and captured the Ohio Division III state championship.

---Rodney McKissic

(www.twitter.com/rodneyjmckissic)

Schmidt: July recruiting proposal 'atrocious'

---St. Bonaventure coach Mark Schmidt is among the scores of college basketball coaches who don't like the proposal to do away with July recruiting and discussed it during the A-10 Media Day. The A-10 commissioner and SEC commissioner both talked about it as well.

---Duke (surprise!) is the preseason No. 1. Syracuse is No. 13.

---Rodney McKissic

(www.twitter.com/rodneyjmckissic)

Offense needs a fixin'

RHODE+ISLAND+UB
---Inconsistency, turnovers, and poor special teams play have tested Jeff Quinn, pictured above, halfway through his first season as a head coach. The only constants in the Bulls' 2-4 start has been arguably the best defense in school history and Quinn's unabashed optimism.

---Quinn calls Temple one of the best teams the Bulls will face this season.

---While UB is tinkering with the idea of playing with two QBs Ohio has already found some success using the system.

---Here's a good college football midseason report by the Denver Post.

---Cam Newton says he's still learning the Auburn offense, which sounds like bad news for the Tigers' remaining SEC opponents. New and other QBs are running all over college football.

---Nearly a week after Eric LeGrand sustained a devastating spinal injury in a game, the Rutgers junior remains awake and on a ventilator, however he has not shown any movement. Twenty-five years after his injury, Marc Buoniconti is the face of hope for a cure to paralysis.

---Brian Kelly's wife wages a campaign of her own.

---The depth of the fall at BYU has been shocking. It’s not that the Cougars are 2-5 and in danger of missing postseason play that is most startling, but a non-winning record to this point is almost inevitable.

---Rodney McKissic

(www.twitter.com/rodneyjmckissic)

End of the July recruiting period?

---The July recruiting period is in jeopardy and coaches are up in arms. If this passes, it will do a disservice not only to coaches but recruits all over the country. The top 100 players in the country will always get noticed, but what about players who aren't heavily recruited like former Niagara guard Tyrone Lewis or former Canisius guard Frank Turner? Where can they find exposure?

---UConn's Jim Calhoun insists that he is running a clean program, that he does not cheat.

---Rodney McKissic

(www.twitter.com/rodneyjmckissic)

Competition heats up at UB

Davis

 ---Sophomore Jerry Davis, who is fighting for his job, welcomes the competition at quarterback.

---Stan Parrish's seat at Ball State must be hot because they're already naming potential replacements.

---Everyone is buying into Jerry Kill's coaching methods at Northern Illinois.

---Kent State stiff arms Purdue in favor of playing Alabama.

---Antsy fans of Kansas football already dreaming of a coaching change won’t like the reality of Turner Gill’s contract. It’s as one-sided in Gill’s favor as the recent outcomes have been for KU’s opponents. Meanwhile, Gill remains relaxed about his program.

---Gene Chizik didn't know what he had in Cam Newton in spring practice and even for the first month of fall work. But how could he? The Auburn quarterback was new, and his teammates weren't allowed to tackle him. LSU's Les Miles' defense is the best in the SEC and No. 3 in the nation, but he isn't sure he knows how his team can stop Newton.

---Rutgers continues to work through a difficult week of practice, doing so with no update on the condition of defensive tackle Eric LeGrand, who remains paralyzed from the neck down. Jay Paterno writes LeGrand needs 'positive belief' to fight back as Adam Taliaferro did.

---Former Georgia great Herschel Walker expressed concern about the number of Georgia football players arrested this year, saying coach Mark Richt has “got to take control” of the issue and the players “have to take responsibility.”

---Rodney McKissic

(www.twitter.com/rodneyjmckissic)

Bonnies picked 13th in A-10

The Atlantic 10 just released its preseason poll and St. Bonaventure was picked to finish 13th, one slot better than Fordham. Junior Andrew Nicholson is a first-team all-league selection and part of the five-man all-defensive team:

1. Temple
2. Xavier
3. Richmond
4. Dayton
5. Rhode Island
6. Saint Louis
7. Charlotte
8. Duquesne
9. La Salle
10. George Washington
11. UMass
12. Saint Joseph’s
13. St. Bonaventure
14. Fordham

First Team

Lavoy Allen, Temple
Kevin Anderson, Richmond
Andrew Nicholson, St. Bonaventure
Damian Saunders, Duquesne
Chris Wright, Dayton

Second Team

Juan Fernandez, Temple
Chris Gaston, Fordham
Tu Holloway, Xavier
Delroy James, Rhode Island
Shamari Spears, Charlotte

Third Team

Chris Braswell, Charlotte
Cody Ellis, Saint Louis
Chris Johnson, Dayton
Lasan Kromah, George Washington
Aaric Murray, La Salle

All-Defensive Team

Lavoy Allen, Temple
Kevin Anderson, Richmond
Dante Jackson, Xavier
Andrew Nicholson, St. Bonaventure
Damian Saunders, Duquesne

All-Rookie Team

C.J. Aiken, Saint Joseph’s
Langston Galloway, Saint Joseph’s
Jordan Latham, Xavier
Rob Loe, Saint Louis
Juwan Staten, Dayton

---Rodney McKissic

(www.twitter.com/rodneyjmckissic)

More and more questions at UB

1+bu+Buffalo+WTH+ra4
---Questions about who starts Saturday for UB don't end at quarterback.

---Temple's Al Golden said that QBs Chester Stewart and Mike Gerardi will compete in practice this week to decide who starts for the Owls at UB.

---The Owls are 8.5-point favorites against the Bulls.

---Here's this week's team report on Temple.

---Eastern Michigan coach Ron English talks about his win last Saturday over Ball State, how he celebrated, and what he thinks of the program moving forward.

---Mike Herndon writes how it's easy to sit here now with Auburn unbeaten and say AD Jay Jacobs made the right move two years ago in bringing Gene Chizik. But to fully understand just how right the move has turned out to be, one needs only to catch up with the coach he passed over in favor of Chizik: Turner Gill.

---Auburn's Cam Newton is now the Heisman Trophy frontrunner.

---Rodney McKissic

(www.twitter.com/rodneyjmckissic)

QB not the only position in question

UB just released its two deep for the Temple game and Bulls coach Jeff Quinn is not only sorting out who starts at QB between sophomore Jerry Davis and true freshman Alex Zordich, two other positions are in the air.

With senior Brandon Thermilius out with a knee injury, Quinn will start either redshirt freshman Branden Oliver, sophomore Jeffvon Gill or senior Ike Nduka at tailback. Oliver has started the first six games this season. At cornerback, senior Sherrod Lott or redshirt freshman Carlos Lammons will start. Lott has started four games while Lammons has started two.

---Rodney McKissic

(www.twitter.com/rodneyjmckissic)

Cool dunks from UB


---I always knew Mitchell Watt had good footwork, but this is ridiculous. Titus Robinson's dunk is sick, too. Thanks to Paul Hutchings for sending the clip.

---Rodney McKissic

(www.twitter.com/rodneyjmckissic)

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About Campus Watch

Bob Dicesare

Bob DiCesare

Western New York native Bob DiCesare covers UB football, Big 4 basketball and writes an occasional column. He still holds a grudge against Chris Ford who, he's convinced, cost St. Bonaventure the 1970 NCAA basketball championship.

@TBNDicesare | bdicesare@buffnews.com


Amy Moritz

Amy Moritz

Amy Moritz, a native of Lockport, has covered colleges for The Buffalo News since 1999. She has a bachelor’s degree in journalism/mass communication from St. Bonaventure University and a master’s degree in humanities from the University at Buffalo. An endurance athlete, she has completed several triathlons, half marathons and marathons.

@amymoritz | amoritz@buffnews.com

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