Hello everyobody from UB Stadium on a spectacular October day for football. Envied all the folks tailgating in the parking lot on my way in. I've already been asked three times since I got here if Bulls can win this one. Sure they can. But I think they'll have to force a couple turnovers to get it done. Bulls have yet to play a complete game in all facets. Sometimes they click for a half offensively, or defensively, or the special teams might come up with some big plays. But all together in one game? Haven't seen it.
Going to watch early to see what kind of attention Ohio pays to UB LB Khalil Mack. UConn and Tennessee were all over him. The good news for Bulls is that other LBs, particularly Fred Branch, have picked up some of the slack. . . . Looking forward too to seeing Ohio QB Tyler Tettleton, who's off to a sizzling start in his sophomore season.
I'm going to get this off my chest ... again. Why are teams not on the field for the national anthem? Do we play it for the benefit of the spectactors? It's become commonplace in college sports, largely because TV dictates EVERYTHING. But you have to wonder when you allow TV to arrange everything to the exclusion of tradition. That's it. I'm done.
PREGAME UPDATE: Defensive end Steven Means is a doubtful starter after undergoing a root canal this morning. Colby Way, who's been playing well, could be in place of Means . . . SS Witney Sherry is out after being "dinged" in practice. . . . Alumns Dom Cook, Davonte Shannon and Naaman Roosevelt expected on sidelines for game.
Means is starting after all. ... Bulls got three-and-out on first possession after long pass for Neutz on first down failed to click. . . . Bobcats three and out as well. Bulls drive start about own 39.
UB 7-0, 8:58: Offense hums on 60-yard drive with Oliver bolting up the middle for the final 12. Ed Young picked up key first down on a reverse on drive and UB ultilized Neutz out of the slot (finally!) for a 16-yard completion.
UB 7, Ohio 7, 7:42: Donte Harden takes kickoff return 67 yards before tripping up at UB 20 and then caps short drive with a 13-yard run off Tettleton option pitch on third-and-3 play.
UB 14, Ohio 7, 2:20: Bulls no-huddle spread has never looked this good. Pretty-as-a-picture drive of 88 yards ends with Oliver plunging in from the 1. Quinn doing great job with play-calling mix. Key gain was Terrell Jackson's 28-yard reception to the 1.
Anderson 9 of 11 for 106. Bulls had ball 10:31 in first quarter. Oliver has 46 yards on 13 carries. Big question now: Can Bulls sustain?
DB Corney Lester just helped off field for Bulls.He also missed time vs. Tennessee. Bobcats punt on fourth-and-1 from UB 36. Paul Hershey shanks punt 11 yards. UB drive start from own 25 with 10:14 left.
UB 21-7, 7:42: Anderson's just picking apart Bobcats secondary. Now he hits Neutz on 36-yard scoring pass to finish off 75-yard drive. Ed Young had at least two catches on march. Bulls will take Neutz in single coverage all day long.
UB 21-14, 5:15: Tettleton gets a great block on the edge from TE Jordan Thompson and sprints 40 yards down right sideline. Drive covers 64 yards in seven plays.
UB 24-14: Oliver's carrer-long 58-yard run takes Bulls to Ohio 2. He shook of arm tackle at line but was otherwise untouched. Stepped out on dive for end zone. And then what do Bulls do on second down? Try another reverse with Young. It lost 4 yards and they settled for 23-yard Fardon FG.
HALFTIME: UB 24, Ohio 17 -- Bobcats get late 27-yard FG from Weller off a drive kept alive by a running-into-punter penalty on Khalil Mack. Looked like Hershey could have won Academy Award on falldown. Big sack by Means on third-down play from UB 5. Oliver at 17 for 115 at half. Anderson 15 of 22 for 196 and a TD.
We're all tied up at 24. Bobcats take opening kick and go 68 yards, mostly with ball-control pass attack. Tettleton connects with Riley Dunlop for 9-yard TD pass.
UB LB Fred Branch taken to locker room. He was injured in scramble after Khalil Mack forced Tettleton fumble. Tettleton scrambed to recover ball. with 9:45 left in quarter.
OHIO 31, UB 24, 7:38: Bobcats spring a double reverse and Lavon Brazill takes it 67 yards untouched down the left sideline. Key block was Tettleton on Mack in backfield.
OHIO 31, UB 31, 7 and change: And then . . . Ed Young sprints 90 yards with WR screen and we're all tied up again. Young having a monster game. It's second-longest pass play for TD in school history.
Lester intercepts Tettleton's red zone pass after Issac Baugh deflection and Bulls dodge bullet. This has to be most riveting UB game since win over Ball State in 2008 MAC title game. ... That was first INT Tettleton has thrown in 178 attempts.
END OF THIRD TIED AT 31. Tettleton giving UB fits with his running. He's at 10 carries for 73 yards.
OHIO 34, UB 31, 14:14: Matt Weller makes 46-yard FG that would have been good from 56.
Anderson has UB's first 300-yard passing game since Jerry Davis vs. Rhode Island last season. Bulls have drive down to Ohio 36.
UB 38, OHIO 34, 5:45 LEFT: Oliver scores his third TD on fourth-and-goal from the 1. Plunge comes at the end of 18-play drive, UB's longest of season. Personal foul by Corey Hastings on Chazz Anderson gave Bulls vital first down on the march.
UB 38, OHIO 37, 3:23: Bobcats wisely take a 33-yard FG by Weller on fourth and 16. Chop block penalty on Ohio killed what was looking like go-ahead drive.
Ohio takes over on own 19 with 2:46 left. . . . Pass takes Bobcats to 34. CB Najja Johnson down for Bulls after incompletion. 2:30 left.
Richie Smith hammers Tettleton for sack on fourth down. Bulls take over on downs with 1:52 left. Ohio out of time outs. Should be formality. ... And it is.
-- Bob DiCesare
taggedCollege football | Mid-American Conference | University at Buffalo