99 for 99: Instant Classic of the Year

http://buffalobulls.com/sports/fball/2012-13/photos/0008/index#

Webster's defines hope as: "To Cherish a desire with anticipation"

Red from "The Shawshank Redemption" defined hope as: "A dangerous thing", while Andy thought hope was: "a good thing, maybe the best of things, and no good thing ever dies"

The Urban Dictionary says hope is: "Mankind's greatest weakness and greatest strength."

And a random Google search brought me this quote who's author I could not find:

"Hope is that little voice you hear whisper "Maybe" when it seems the entire world is shouting "No!"

After 2012, UB nation is frozen in a state of hope, and it is the best and worst possible situation we could ever be in.

The personification of UB's hope is Joe Licata. The QB went 3-1 in his first four career starts, the best record for a UB QB in his first four starts since UB entered FBS football. We HOPE he will progress and develop into the QB that takes us back to the promised land.

That HOPE can also be dangerous, what if he regresses, what if 2012 was a mirage based on weak opponents, maybe opposing defenses will learn how to beat Licata with more film on him. Can UB fans absorb another crushing blow to their undying hope?

What if Colin Michael or Tony Daniel or Alex Zordich play amazing under center this spring? If Licata is not the starter in Columbus, UB nation will be in shambles, the controversy between the hope generated by Licata and the more tangible in-practice performance would be intense.

Did the HOPE that came with the Licata era rub off on the Quinn Era? Is he really the man we need wearing the headset, or is he just coasting in the wake of the hometown hero?

And the final problem with HOPE, timing. Is next year our last chance? Last year with Neutz, last year with Mack,last year with BO, is it our last real chance to compete? Can Licata be the man to lead us as a Sophomore?

Plenty of questions remain but I agree with Andy Dufresne. Even during UB's darkest hour, at 1-7, with 6 wins in 32 tries over 2.6 years, on our #4 Running Back, with only one reliable receiver, with a young secondary and questionable special teams, we found hope. Despite all the questions, the ones I asked and all the others I did not, the hope is what will keep us going until August 31, 2013.

For that reason, the story of the year was the beginning of the Joe Licata era and the crazy win over the Miami Redhawks.

Licata_medium

(Click to View Bigger)

Licata is the 9th QB to start 4 games at UB in the FBS era. When you compare the first 4 games of these QBs:

Licata had the best winning percentage, the only UB QB in the FBS era to win more than 1 of his first 4 career starts. Licata won 3.

Licata also captained the team to the most points, 92 points over 4 games, edging out Tony Paoli's 88 points in his first 4 starts in 2006. In comparison, Drew Willy only managed 50 points in his first 4 starts and Alex Zordich was dead last, UB scored 29 in his first 4 starts.

Licata is tied for 2nd with Randall Secky, throwing only 2 interceptions in their first 4 games (P.J. Pisorik threw only 1)

Licata is far away from Zach Maynard's .646 completion rate, but is #4 completing .556, behind Willy (.593) and Anderson (.586).

Licata is #3 in yards thrown with 806, behind Maynard's 1024 and Davis' 882. Davis had the help of a FCS game to pad his yardage.

With 5 TD passes, Licata again tied Secky for 3rd, behind Davis' 8 and Maynard's 7.

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