Days ahead of the Mid American Conference Championship game, Lance Leipold and two of his players have been honored by the Mid American Conference.
Lance Leipold was named MAC Coach of the Year:
Horns Up!— #MACtion (@MACSports) November 28, 2018
After leading the program to a MAC East Division title & its first-ever 10-win season since making the move to FBS, UB's @CoachLeipold has been named MAC Coach of the Year! @UBFootball | @UBAthletics | #MACtion pic.twitter.com/1nFClkXvS2
He has arguably put together UB’s best season since 1959 and despite several key seniors has has done it with a roster that seems to be ready to play another strong season next year.
Leipold was an unconventional choice when the Bulls hired him straight out of Division III, but thus far it has payed off..
Tyree Jackson was named the conference’s offensive player of the year
I hear tell of a 6’7” giant taking snaps in UB’s backfield. Each of his strides long enough to get across the Niagara River and he has an arm strong enough to throw the Ball from his own 20 yard line at UB Stadium straight into the endzone.... Of Ralph Wilson Stadium..
He is, the MAC tallest Quarterback..
In all seriousness though, Jackson has shown a lot of progression over previous years and at one point this season he was being talked about as a first round Quarterback, though now he is projected in the later rounds.
I think he would get drafted if he went out this year, just for the physical tools he possess. But if Jackson comes back next year and develops a bit more he can do what Khalil Mack did and go from 3rd-ish to high first round.
Jaret Patterson was named the Mid American Conference freshman of the year.
Patterson started the year in a backup role along with Kevin Marks but over the course of the year emerged as UB’s clear number one back.
With 874 yards already on the year a good MAC Championship game, and a decent Bowl game could get him over the century mark.
Since moving into the starting role Patterson is averaging 100 yards a game when the Bulls win. He has become a huge driver for the UB offense.
And if Patterson had not won the award you honestly could have made a great case for Kevin Marks.
NIU’s Sutton Smith Named MAC Defensive and Conference POY
In addition to being named Defensive Player of the Year, NIU’s @suttonsmith5 has been tabbed as the winner of the 37th Vern Smith Leadership Award as the top player in the MAC! @NIUAthletics | @NIU_Football | #MACtion pic.twitter.com/IiDyYhpgod— #MACtion (@MACSports) November 28, 2018
This is what’s waiting for the Bulls, one of the most dominating defenses in the conference led by one of the MAC’s best players.
It will be a real test for the offensive line.