First win in almost a year and dang it feels good. It was also the best back to back performances, despite the loss to Pitt, of the Jeff Quinn Era. After beating up on fellow a fellow SUNY Member Buffalo is now, thankfully, not riding one of the longest losing streaks in college football. Hopefully the team stays focused for next weeks game so they can avoid starting a new one.
Player of the Game: Bulls Nation seems to be leaning to Brandon Oliver but anyone who watched could also make a strong case for Khalil Mack, who was just named the National Linebacker of the Week by College Football Performance Awards.
Play of the Game: The opening strike to Alex Dennison. Dennison became a fan favorite last season after bombing out as a Quarterback. Instead of being frustrated by the system or angry at his circumstances Dennison stated making an immediate impact on special teams last season. Over the off season he bulked up to tight end proportions and fittingly scored the first opening quarter touchdown of the Jeff Quinn Era.
It was over when: Devon Hughes brought in a fifteen yard Pass From Chazz Anderson early in the third. By that point in the game UB's defense had established themselves enough to keep a three touchdown lead safe.
Surprisingly Nice: The Depth on the defensive line. Colby Way Way got his second career sack and Wyatt Cahill was a beast in the middle all game long. Depth on the lines is far more important than anywhere else on the field and Coach Oliver seems to have cultivated himself a very solid rotation
Surprisingly Painful: Calling what Khalil Mack did 'taunting'. The reason that rule was created is this:
What Mack did was *technically* a violation of the new rule but it was hardly the type of play for which the rule was creates. For his aprt Khalil Mack took it as a learning experience.
"I got overexcited. It'll never happen again. I hurt my teammates." -- Khalil Mack
He also terrorized the Seawolves defense during the remainder of the game which more than made up for the seven lost points.
Position Grades After the Jump
That was, statistically, one of the best showings since the last time we beat an FCS team. All that Anderson stopped from turning the Stony Brook secondary into pulp was the fact that the running game was so effective. Good passes, mostly good decision making and solid leadership. I can't give an A for 15 completions and just 164 yards, especially given the interception
Zordich looked comfortable for his part of the game. The first pass was a bad decision. Yes it was a designed screen play but the back had two defenders closing.
Running Backs: A-
Someone pointed out that aside from the three big runs Oliver had 12 carries for 12 yards. That's a pretty bad stat line. Still the guy touched the ball 17 times for almost 150 yards. He is quickly becoming the driving force behind our offense.
Anthone Taylor looked goo late. The ineligibility of Potts and some nagging issues with Gill may give him a chance to get more work done.
Wide Receivers: B+
Dennison gets the A for breaking the first quarter drought and all of the receivers looked solid. But just not enough work to justify an A. Devon Hughes was great, a pleasure to see some of the depth at Quinns disposal.
Offensive Line: B+
Aside from the three big run s there were not a lot of huge holes for UB Running backs. But the kept Anderson upright the whole game.
Very happy with the new "New Look" Jeff Quinn offense. More runs from under center, more time used to set up the pass and less ambitious routes. It's down right efficient.
Defensive Line: A-
They gave up almost 200 yards on the ground to an FCS squad, albeit a solid ground based FCS squad. The depth was amazing and Oliver has clearly worked the fundamentals this off season. Hands were up at the right times, pursuit was balanced, and there were few breakdowns.
The Seawolves did get around the outside a bit more than you would like to see. But other than that this unit was amazing. What more can be said about Khalil Mack.
Defensive Backs: B+
Not a whole lot of challenges, Stony Brook is a ground based attack. That being said the corners are partly to blame for some of those outside runs and the defensive backs did get beat on the lone touchdown.
Good scheme for Stony Brook but the execution broke down a few times.
Special Teams (Kicking) C:
Another kickoff out of bounds. Clarke is a freshman and I am sure he will get passed this but it may do real damage if he takes too long. Fardon established a range of about 40-45 yards when he missed a long field goal.
Special Teams (Punting and Returning) A:
Punting? Five times and four ended up inside the 20. The one that did not was a 33 yard punt that was fair caught at the 27. The return game is really on the cusp of breaking a few, long solid, and scary returns again today.
Bulls Nation / True Blue / Athletics Department: A+
Almost twenty two thousand for a game against an FCS team. And the student section was going the entire game. True Blue and the AD did a heck of a job drumming up support for this game. Nearly seven thousand more showed up than did for Jeff Quinn's first game.