Ball State 20 - Buffalo 3: How much further can UB Fall?


Final - 11.12.2010 1 2 3 4 Total
Ball St. Cardinals 0 10 10 0 20
Buffalo Bulls 3 0 0 0 3

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This is the Buffalo Play Card when Zordich goes down

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Buffalo lost the last excuse for their woeful season. Up to this point many, including this author, have pointed at UB's strength of schedule as a mitigating factor in what is one of the worst seasons of the modern era. Tonight UB faced just the second FCS team on their schedule who will miss out on a bowl game. The last time they were in that situation they put up monster numbers against Bowling Green.

This time, however, UB's performance was even worse then against teams like Miami (6 Wins), NIU (10 Wins), and Ohio (8 Wins). This time UB let a Ball State team that LOST TO EMU and NEEDED OVERTIME TO BEAT AKRON come into Amherst and treat us like a prep squad.

Even now it's easy to hunt for excuses, and its something that a lot of fans will be doing this weekend but at the end of the day UB just got demolished. Yes UB lost their QB who was doing an OK job moving he offense but even in that situation you should be able to manage just 89 yards of offense in three quarters.

One could also point to the fact that UB only let BSU score 13 offensive points but that would ignore that the cards were not trying to score in the second half, they were trying to eat clock. The Cards at up 15 minuets of clock on just two drives that produced only Three points.

There was also a good stretch of time where UB's defense was committing bonehead penalties which kept those long drives alive and shifted the field position.

The game opened, like most UB games this year with a decent defensive stand followed by a Buffalo Turnover. This evening Buffalo survived the exchange and managed to escape the first quarter with a three point lead. The Bulls and Cards looked poised to deliver a competitive game until Alex Zordich went down.

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Zordich had been running all over the Cards but the Freshman QB was taking way too many hits in the process. He was leading the team in rushing but was just two out of six passing with an interception. His passing numbers were not helped by his receivers who dropped passes.

Within a couple of plays it was very apparent how ineffective Davis was going to be and that's when coach Quinn dusted off Alex Dennison who managed a negative run. It was at this point that UB's only path to victory may have been a solid defensive performance.

Until Sean Baker stripped Jerry Davis on the first drive of the second half and ran in for a touchdown. At that point UB would need some offense, unfortunately nobody would step up to deliver. UB's running backs ran for less than two yards per carry and Davis threw two picks.

Buffalo's longest drive of the second half was 48 yards when Ball State went into the prevent late in the fourth Quarter. Aside from that drive UB managed drives of 14, 7, 5, 2, 0, -12 yards.

UB has to regroup for their final home game of the year against Eastern Michigan next Saturday. The Bulls are in a position to finish last in the conference should they lose to the Eagles and then Akron in the series finally.

Grades:

Quarterback: F

Jerry Davis will be getting his membership card from the Audubon after all the ducks he put up. When he was not missing wide open receivers he was throwing to the inside of covered receivers. This performance should now, and forever more, end the questioning of the move to Alzex Zordich. If Zordich is not ready to go next week I think you go with Warden.

I Think Davis pulled a Ryan Leaf this season. He has the tools, he has the talent, but the circumstances as they existed this season and the alignment of the planets ruined him as a QB. Maybe he'll come out on fire next spring but I doubt it.

Running Backs: F

When Zordich went down the guys who needed to step up where the running backs. What the backs did was average less than 2.5 yards per carry.

Receivers: F

Yes a lot of the passes that Davis was serving up were so far off target it was a minor miracle that they got a hand on it but the group did manage quite a few drops.

Offensive Line: F

This is a ball state team that was giving up 185 yards per game. UB managed just 140 and most of that was off of Quarterback scrambles, not designed runs.

We all knew this was going to be a hard year. UB is down to seven serviceable linemen and none fo them were recruited or trained for the spread before the spring. Still until this line opens up some holes this offense is going nowhere.

Defensive Line: C

Wenning had time and Williams had space. The line managed to slow plays down but for the most part they were a non factor.

Linbackers: C

Nothing earth shattering from this unit but they did what they had to do tonight. Had there been any help from the offense their work might have been sufficent. But in a game where UB needed big plays from the unit they came up a little thin.

Defensive Backs: C-

Too many wide open guy's dragging across behind the play.

Special Teams: A

Long FG's, good punts, and solid coverage. Throw in a block and this may be the best special teams performance going back to 2008.

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