After this week's unwatchable Super Bowl, and the announcement of a second FCS game for UB Football in 2014, I started thinking about "good" games and "bad" games. So I came up with a list of the most watchable and least watchable games of the Quinn era...
#5 Least Watchable
2013 Buffalo 42, EMU 14
Why it was bad: Like Super Bowl XLVIII, No Drama. Outside of a brief glimmer of hope late in the 2nd Quarter, EMU showed no sign of life. Also like Super Bowl XLVIII, the hope was squashed by a kickoff return. After 3 Quarters, the 42-7 score left us just hoping the final 15 minutes would run quickly.
#5 Most Watchable
2012 Buffalo 17, EMU 21
Why it was great: The game was close at all times. UB answered each EMU score keeping the tension high for the 4th Quarter where a missed EMU field goal set up UB for a game winning drive, and while the good guys couldn't convert, it made for good football drama.
I hate paycheck games, the games where someone pays UB money in exchange for UB sending their football team to an assured defeat. My problem with the games is winning earns money. No team would give you more than what they are making for a game. If UB would get 2 million dollars to play at Alabama, you know Alabama is making more than 2 million dollars that day. Paycheck games are not a hack in the system, it's not a way to pull even with the power players of the game. They are the most short-sighted thing in college football...
#4 Least Watchable
2012 Buffalo 3, NIU 45
Why it was bad: Jordan Lynch bulldozed the UB defense while the offense did nothing and the special teams blew chances to keep it close.
#4 Most Watchable
2012 Buffalo 27, Miami 24
Why it was great: This game had it all, a defensive showcase turned into a wild west shootout. The "Daniel-Dennison" Botched FG Miracle gave Buffalo the lead, but a Miami miracle conversion on 4th and 20 tied the game late. It took a 3rd miracle, a 47-yard kickoff return by Devin Campbell and a 4th Miracle, a 47-yard field goal by Patrick Clarke as time expired to give UB the win.
The real money comes from playing good games against even competition and establishing meaningful games. USC can charge double for a game against mediocre Notre Dame and UCLA squads, because the meaning of the games are greater than the action on the field...
#3 Least Watchable
2011 Buffalo 51, Akron 10
Why it was bad: The '11 Bulls may not have won a lot, but when they did, they made it boring. The game started with a kickoff return to the 1 and a BO score on the first play from scrimmage. From there, UB took a 30-3 halftime lead and a 44-3 lead into the 4th quarter.
#3 Most Watchable
2012 Buffalo 20, Toledo 25
Why it was great: Great players made great plays, Lester and Molls each scoring defensively, then Campbell collecting a 42-yard TD in what would end up being Alex Zordich's last big moment as UB Starting QB. A 7-point UB lead turned into an 11-point deficit behind Terrance Owens and David Fluellen in the 3rd Quarter and finally, the tension stayed high as the Licata led Bulls scored early in the fourth giving UB a chance to win the game.
Who would I have scheduled? I feel a few schools mean something to UB fans: In-State Opponents (Stony Brook & Syracuse), Rivals (Temple), Familiar Faces (Liberty, Nevada).
#2 Least Watchable
2010 Buffalo 0, Temple 42
Why it was bad: It was homecoming. I was there. It was unwatchable. Temple jumped to a 21-0 lead in the first and continued the onslaught behind Rod Streater. I left at halftime and I'm sure many of you did as well.
#2 Most Watchable
2012 Buffalo 31, Ohio 38
Why it was great: A game of runs is always exciting. UB's 14 points to open the game were answered by 24 Ohio points, only for UB to counter with another 10 to tie the game. Ohio would score two and before UB could rally back for two of their own, time ran out.
That said, I'm ok with two FCS teams. In 2007 UB played two top 16 teams and lost by a total of 83-27. The games were not good, and it led to a 5-7 bowl-less campaign. Two FCS games could have put UB at 7-5, and a bowl game. With the current bowl rules, and the five MAC Bowl tie-ins, two FCS games doesn't hurt as much as it did in the past. UB would probably go bowling at 6-6 with 2 FCS wins in 2014.
2013 Buffalo 13, Baylor 70
Why it was bad: Again, I was there. It was unwatchable, I left at halftime. Not only was it physically impossible to watch from the 100+ degree stands, it was also a ridiculous blowout. It was semi-entertaining for the early drive and the success of Neutz, but it took about five minutes to realize our defense was never going to stop Baylor.
2012 Buffalo 29, UMass 19
Why it was great: Everyone loves a comeback, UB trailed by 3 after 1, by 13 at the half and by 5 going into the 4th quarter. After being shutout in the first half, UB scored 14 in the 3rd, 15 in the 4th and the defense kept UMass off the scoreboard in the 4th quarter to turn calamity into triumph. The most dramatically watchable game in the Quinn era.