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The Tailgate Preview: Buffalo vs Temple

For years The Pregame Meal was a staple of football week here at Bull Run. I can’t replicate that, so this is The Tailgate.

Jello Shots: 100 Words

It’s a good thing this one is at home, because Buffalo could use a pick-me-up following a listless defeat in Virginia. Unfortunately, Temple comes in off a nice win over a solid Maryland team and has improved upon their 2018 passing attack that the Bulls dodged early in last year’s slate. Anthony Russo has a serious menu of weapons at his disposal and the Owls a few years into AAC membership realistically have a significant talent advantage for Buffalo to overcome. UB will need to find consistent success in the run game and play mistake-free ball to even their record.

Actual Analysis: Statistical Leaders

Passing: TU QB Anthony Russo 52-78-2/686/7

UB QB Matt Myers 36-74-1/481/5

Receiving: TU WR Jadan Blue 15/249/2

UB WR Antonio Nunn 9/162/0

TU WR Branden Mack 12/147/7

UB TE Zac Lefebvre 4/76/2

Rushing: UB RB Kevin Marks 48/247/0

UB RB Jaret Patterson 52/230/1

TU RB Re’mahn Davis 24/152/1

TU RB Jager Gardner 26/136/2

Song of the Week

It’s my firm belief that to win this one UB is going to have to run, and run a bunch. Plus, Tom Petty is awesome.

Beat What You Eat

Beat what you eat was a Sales Family Tailgate specialty when Trevor was still on the team, but even Mrs. Sales grew tired of bird mascots. That said, I’ve finally found a use for Pinterest. Please do not actually waste your time arranging cheese, pepperoni, and/or crudites into shapes for your tailgate.

Drink!

Yuengling would be a cop out, and it would be a bad one, because Pottsville is not that close to Philly. For another beer you should be able get in WNY, look to the better (and closer to Philly) Victory Brewing. I’m particularly a fan of their summer beers, but with Oktoberfest right around the corner, you can’t go wrong with their Prima Pils.

Three to Watch

Temple Passing vs The Buffalo Secondary: At times this season, UB’s defense has looked positionally and fundamentally sound, and at others we’ve gotten a stark reminder of how few starters returned from 2018. In the blog swap with Temple Football Forever, the Owls expert compared Russo favorably to Rich Gannon and Matt Ryan, so this has to be a point of concern.

UB’s Short Passing: This is effectively the same bullet as Julien Bourassa last week, but the point stands: Matt Myers has to have a way to find 5-10 yards through the air if bigger passing plays are going to have any bite and the run game is going to remain effective through the hole game. UB was able to move the ball against Liberty but couldn’t finish drives for points.

Halftime adjustments: UB should get a boost returning home after two weeks away, and we at Bull Run expect it to be a close game into the half. Where we stand to be surprised, though, is how things go after the break. Rod Carey on the opposite sideline did pretty well with adjustments when he last saw the Bulls in the conference championship, and Lance Leipold will need to match him tomorrow.