Something has to give on Tuesday night when the Akron Zips battle the Buffalo Bulls at UB Stadium. After a 4-2 start the Zips have lost three straight, including a 27-10 defeat at the hands of East Division leading Bowling Green. The Bulls, meanwhile, have lost four straight and are 0-2 under interim head coach Alex Wood.
LAST TIME OUT:
November 4th losing at home to Bowling Green 27-10. It was a battle of field goals in the first half. That changed in favor of the visiting Falcons in the third quarter. First, they recovered a UA fumble in the end zone for a touchdown. Then they added a second touchdown by converting a Zips interception into points, giving them the lead for good.
Statistically, UA outgained BGSU 398-389, However, Akron committed five turnovers (three interceptions and two fumbles) that were turned into 24 BGSU points.
Junior QB Kyle Pohl completed 31 of 62 passes (both career highs) for 304 yards, along with three interceptions. Senior RB Jawon Chisholm had 65 yards on just 10 carries including a 15-yard touchdown run early in the fourth quarter. Senior L.T had nine receptions for 80 yards.
Defensively, senior LB Jatavis Brown had a career high 16 total tackles (nine solo) with two forced fumbles.
ON THE YEAR:
As a team UA is averaging 384.4 yards per game on offense while scoring 21.4 pts per game. Defensively the Zips allow 21 points per game (best in the MAC) and 363.6 total yards per game (second in the MAC).
Individually, on the offense Kyle Pohl is completing 55.1 percent of his passes (150 of 272) for 1,593 yards with seven touchdowns and six interceptions (three coming in the loss to the Falcons). Junior RB Conor Hundley leads the ground game with 455 yards on 81 carries with three touchdowns.
Junior WR Zach D’Orazio leads the receivers with 45 catches for 486 yards and a touchdown (at least four Zips have 20 or more receptions while eight have at least 10 or more)…The defense is led by Jatavis Brown the senior has 78 total tackles (52 solo) he had a career 16 stops against BGSU. Brown leads in tackles for losses with 10 while tied with Nordly Capi for the lead in sacks with four. On special teams, junior P Zach Paul is averaging 44 yards per kick (second in the MAC), while fellow junior PK Robert Stein is averaging 58.7 yards per kickoff with eight touchbacks. He is a perfect 18-for-18 on PATs while going 8 of 10 on field goals, incurring his first two misses of the season against BGSU
UA is 4-5, having lost three straight after a 4-2 start, and is 1-3 on the road).They opened the 2014 season with a 41-0 shutout of Howard at home then came consecutive losses at Penn State and at home to nationally ranked Marshall. The win at Pittsburgh on September 27th started this three game winning streak which included a win over Eastern Michigan, their first win in a MAC opener since 2007. They followed that up with a win over Miami and then the three game losing streak…UA will finish the season pretty much at home. Next Tuesday, they play their final home game against Massachusetts and then end the regular season at nearby Kent State…The Zips need two wins to become Bowl eligible
NOTES & QUOTES:
Several Zips are moving up the all-time charts..Senior RB Jawon Chisholm rushed for 65 yards and a touchdown against Bowling Green, moving him into second place on the all-time rushing list with 3,101 yards…Senior WR Keith Sconiers moved into eighth place on the all-time reception list with 109 with three catches against BGSU…Kyle Pohl is in fourth place on the all-time yardage list with 4,393 after registering 304 yards against the Falcons -- his third 300 yard passing game this season…Senior LB Jatavis Brown had a career high 16 total tackles against BGSU -- his third game of 2004 with 10 or more tackles…Brown’s two forced fumbles gives him the team lead with three
The game is the 14th lifetime meeting between the two schools with UA holding a 9-4 advantage. The Bulls have won three of the last four encounters, including their last in 2011 51-10…It’s the eighth game played in Western New York with the Zips holding a 4-3 edge, In the game back in 2011, UB had a 30-3 halftime lead, which grew to 44-3 after three quarters. They ran the ball for 331 yards and had 497 yards in total offense compared to just 239 for the Zips whose lone touchdown came early in the fourth quarter on a 64-yard pass from Patrick Nicely to Marquelo Suel…Hours after the game, head coach Rob Ianello was relieved of his duties and later replaced by Terry Bowden
BUFFALO BULLS (3-6, 1-4 MAC EAST)
LAST TIME OUT:
November 4th losing at Ohio 37-14, absorbing their fourth consecutive loss as they fell behind 27-0 in the third quarter before getting on the scoreboard on a 12 yard pass from Joe Licata to Ron Washington. UB’s other score came on a 75-yard fumble return by sophomore CB Boise Ross. It was not a good night offensively for the Bulls as they were only able to gain a total of 134 total yards. Licata only managed to complete 9 of 20 passes for 74 yards with the touchdown to Willoughby (who led the UB receiving corps with three for 37 yards), along with an interception. Junior RB Anthone Taylor rushed for only 37 yards on 17 carries. Defensively, senior LB Lee Skinner had 13 total tackles (five solo)
ON THE YEAR:
As a team, UB is averaging 28.8 points and 415.4 yards per game. Defensively, the Bulls are allowing 33.6 points and 424 yards per game.
Individually junior RB Anthone Taylor has rushed for 988 yards on 214 attempts with nine touchdowns. Fellow junior QB Joe Licata has completed 63.3% of his passes (188 of 297) for 2,199 yards with 21 touchdowns and 10 interceptions…Ron Willoughby leads the receivers with 39 catches for 586 yards…Buffalo has two players with 30 or more receptions, six with 20 or more and eight with 10 or more.
Defensively, senior LB Lee Skinner had 81 total tackles (27 solo). Senior SS Adam Redden leads with five sacks and 13 tackles for losses…On special teams, junior Tyler Grassman is averaging 40.4 yards per punt while senior PK Patrick Clarke is 6x13 on field goals and 29x30 on PAT
Buffalo is 3-6 (1-4 in MAC play and 3-2 at home). It opened the season with a win over FCS member Duquesne 38-28 before two straight losses at Army and to nationally ranked Baylor at home before a national television audience.
The Bulls opened MAC play with a home win over Miami, followed by a victory against another FCS team in Norfolk State.
UB then lost a one-point affair at Bowling Green, 36-35. When the Bulls squandered a a 27-9 lead at Eastern Michigan losing to the Eagles 37-27, head coach Jeff Quinn was fired and replaced by offensive coordinator Alex Wood. The change of leadership has not registered in the win column as the Bulls have lost to Central Michigan and Ohio…UB ends the season with a home game against Kent State before heading to Gillette Stadium in Foxboro to battle Massachusetts
NOTES & QUOTES:
Interim head coach Alex Wood is a native of Massillon, Ohio and went to Washington High School. He was previously a head coach at James Madison, leading the Dukes to a 23-22 mark and a berth in the Division I-AA Playoffs…. He has MAC experience at Kent State in 1979 and 1980 under Ron Blackledge and at Miami in 2010. Add to that NFL experience with the Minnesota Vikings and the Arizona Cardinals.
QB Joe Licata is the only quarterback in the MAC to have thrown at least one touchdown pass in every game so far this season…Licata has tied the school record for career touchdown passes with 52, sharing the mark right now with Drew Willy…RB Anthone Taylor is 12 yards away from the 1,000 yard mark, making him the third UB rusher to reach that mark since the school joined the Football Bowl Subdivision (the others are James Starks-Green Bay Packers) and Branden Oliver (San Diego Chargers)