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99 for 99 - #62: James Starks' Most Single Game Rushing Yards, Longest Career Run

99 for 99 takes a look at the 99 biggest moments in UB Football history in anticipation of the 99th Season of UB Football which begins on September 1st, 2012. These moments are not in any order, however the top 10 moments have been saved for last.

October 13, 2007 - Buffalo 43 - Toledo 33 - James Starks career best 231 yards

Coming off a homecoming victory over Ohio the 2-4 Bulls hosted the 2-4 Toledo Rockets with the chance to win 3 games for the first time since 2001, and the chance to earn 3 MAC wins for the first time ever. James Starks started the festivities with a 45 yard touchdown run on the second play of the game. He added a 9 yard touchdown run on UB’s second drive and UB took a 28-10 lead into the second quarter. With the big lead, UB fed Starks early and often, he finished with 34 carries. UB took a 36-13 lead in the second quarter, but Toldeo narrowed the gap scoring 13 points to bring the game within 10 points in the third quarter.

Starks began the game with a long touchdown, and ended it with a 36 yard touchdown run to give UB a 43-26 lead with 13 minutes remaining in the game. UB would hold on for the 43-33 victory. Starks finished with a career best 231 yards, third most in UB history at the time, (now fourth) and he became the fourth Bull Running Back in UB history with a 200-yard game after Underwood in ’86 & ’87, Bell in ’91, and Swan in ’95 & ’96.

November 3, 2007 - Buffalo 28 - Miami 31 - James Starks opens the Miami game with the 2nd longest run in UB history

At 4-5 with 3 games remaining, the 2007 Bulls had a shot at bowl eligibility. To get there, they would have to beat one of the top two teams in the MAC East, Miami or Bowling Green. If Buffalo could beat both, they would likely earn a trip to the MAC Championship game.

Running Back James Starks was no stranger to the big play: Starks opened the Temple game with a 74-yard touchdown reception, ended the Ohio game with a 72 yard touchdown run and scored on runs of 45 and 36 against Toledo. Against Miami, Starks opened the game with the second biggest running play in UB history. The UB defense forced Miami to punt on their first drive, and UB started on their own 3. After a 5 yard gain on first, Starks took an inside run to the second level, then turned on the jets and outran the Miami secondary to the end zone, untouched.

Starks' run surpassed Alan Bell’s 91 yard run in 1990 and is second only to Ed Malanowics’ 95 yard run in 1929. The run was just the start of a back and forth explosive game. Unfortunately, Buffalo fell short, losing the game 31-28 to the eventual MAC East Champs. Buffalo would fall to Bowling Green and fail to qualify for postseason play.