Avenging the Nate Oats-era Losses

Last weekend, members of the UB men's basketball team ended their run in The Basketball Tournament, competing as Blue Collar U. In previous rounds, the Bulls alumni team faced and beat two alumni teams of universities that previously beat the Bulls, Zip 'Em Up (Xavier) and Category 5 (University of Miami).

The Losses

During the Nate Oats-era, the Bulls lost to the following teams:

2015-16: Old Dominion, St. Joseph's, St. Bonaventure, Duke, Iowa State, VCU, Akron, Eastern Michigan, Western Michigan, Toledo, Ohio, Akron, Miami (OH), Miami (FL)

2016-17: Xavier, Nevada, Creighton, St. Bonaventure, Pittsburgh, Canisius, Robert Morris, Toledo, Ohio, Ball State, Miami (OH), Akron, Kent State

2017-18: Cincinnati, South Dakota State, St. Bonaventure, Syracuse, Texas A&M, Kent State, Northern Illinois, Miami (OH), Kentucky

2018-19: Marquette, Northern Illinois, Bowling Green, Texas Tech

The "Nate Oats Revenge Tour"

The Nate Oats Revenge Tour occurred before Oats even left Buffalo. In the 2018-19 season, the Oats-led Bulls managed to beat a number of teams they previously lost to. In the out of conference schedule, the Bulls won these games in their opponents' own arenas.

December 8: #17 Buffalo 80, St. Bonaventure 62

In a rivalry game preceded by the Bonaventure student section chanting "We want UB" in a previous game, the Bulls rolled through the Bonnies with a dominant win. The fallout from the game included the "Be careful what you wish for" tweet from Oats, and a statement from the St. Bonaventure president instructing Bonaventure fans to not sexually harass minors. This win avenged losses in Oats' previous three years.

December 18: #14 Buffalo 71, Syracuse 59

After reaching #14 in the AP Poll, the Bulls took a two hour trip east to Syracuse to face the Syracuse Orange. It might have been a statement win, since the Orange were both unranked and coming off a disappointing loss to Old Dominion, but it avenged the 2017-18 loss.

December 29: #21 Buffalo 87, Canisius 72

While the Bulls beat Canisius the previous season, the out of conference Revenge Tour was completed at Koessler Athletic Center, avenging a loss in 2016 where Reggie Witherspoon beat Buffalo in the Big 4 Classic in downtown Buffalo.

MAC Play: Every Team Except Northern Illinois (and Central Michigan)

In conference play, the Bulls only lost to Bowling Green and Northern Illinois. The Bowling Green loss in the 2018-19 season was avenged twice, once at the end of the regular season and another time to win the MAC Tournament Championship. Going undefeated against the rest of the MAC avenged losses against nine MAC teams, since the Oats-led Bulls never lost to Central Michigan.

*Bonus* November 9: Buffalo 99, West Virginia 94

While the Bulls lost to West Virginia during Bobby Hurley's tenure, Oats and the Bulls decided to take care of the Mountaineers for good measure to start off the Revenge Tour.

Outright Avenged

After the Nate Oats Revenge Tour, the Bulls had the following teams they had unavenged losses to:

Old Dominion, St. Joseph's, Duke, Iowa State, VCU, Miami (FL), Xavier, Nevada, Creighton, Pittsburgh, Robert Morris, Cincinnati, South Dakota State, Texas A&M, Kentucky, Marquette, Northern Illinois, Texas Tech

Counting an avenged loss as one where either the Bulls or the Nate Oats-led Alabama Crimson Tide beat one of these teams, we can remove the following teams from the list:

Robert Morris (December 16, 2017): Buffalo 86, Robert Morris 70

Kentucky (January 12, 2021): Alabama 70, Kentucky 59

Northern Illinois (February 23, 2021): Buffalo 102, Northern Illinois 74


The remaining unavenged losses:

Old Dominion, St. Joseph's, Duke, Iowa State, VCU, Miami (FL), Xavier, Nevada, Creighton, Pittsburgh, Cincinnati, South Dakota State, Texas A&M, Marquette, Texas Tech

Using the results from the 2021 edition of The Basketball Tournament, the Bulls avenged two more losses:

Xavier (July 26, 2021): Blue Collar U 93, Zip 'Em Up 83

Miami (FL) (July 27, 2021): Blue Collar U 78, Category 5 61

Both teams included players that previously handed the Bulls a loss

Not Really Avenged, But We'll Count it Anyway

The remaining unavenged losses:

Old Dominion, St. Joseph's, Duke, Iowa State, VCU, Nevada, Creighton, Pittsburgh, Cincinnati, South Dakota State, Texas A&M, Marquette, Texas Tech

Some of these will be a bit of a stretch:

South Dakota State (March 15, 2018): Buffalo 89, Arizona 68

Since the Bulls and the Crimson Tide do not play many teams from out west, we have to go to the double transitive property on this one.

Iowa State (November 9, 2018): Buffalo 99, West Virginia 94

The Bulls beat the Mountaineers who beat the Cyclones in their last meeting.

Nevada (December 1, 2018): Buffalo 85, San Fransisco 81

USF beat Nevada in their last previous meeting on December 23, 2017.

St. Joseph's, VCU (December 8, 2018): #17 Buffalo 80, St. Bonaventure 62

While the Bulls and the Hawks have not met on the court since 2015, the Hawks are in the Atlantic-10 conference and lost to the Bonnies early in 2018, prior to the Bull's routing of the Bonnies in December.

St. Bonaventure beat VCU in their last previous meeting on February 28, 2018.

Old Dominion, Pittsburgh (December 18, 2018): Buffalo 71, Syracuse 59

While the Bulls did not outright beat the Monarchs, the Bulls beat the Syracuse Orange by 12 points immediately after the Monarchs beat the Orange by 6 points.

Syracuse beat Pittsburgh in their last previous meeting on January 27, 2018.

Creighton, Marquette (December 2, 2020): Alabama 88, Providence 71

Providence beat both Creighton and Marquette in their previous matchups in 2020.

Texas A&M (Various):

Alabama has not won a game against Texas A&M since Nate Oats has taken the Alabama job, but Alabama has beat many teams that have won their last matchup against Texas A&M.

Duke (Various):

The Bulls have also not met Duke since the 2015-16 season, the Bulls have beat a number of head basketball coaches that are Duke alumni including Bobby Hurley (Arizona State), Greg Paulus (Niagara), Tommy Amaker (Harvard)

Cincinnati, Texas Tech (Stole Ya Player):

While neither LaQuill Hardnett nor Josh Mballa were top players on their previous teams, we obtained transfers from Cincinnati and Texas Tech in the 2019 offseason.