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Top Three Coaches of Buffalo’s Third Era

With kickoff just 40 days away and Buffalo Coach Maurice Linguist about to complete his first calendar year at Buffalo, I thought it would be neat to take a look back at some other UB coaches.

We’ve looked at the first and second era of UB football which covered from 1894 to 1942. After the war started UB football was sidelined and so the third era covers 1946-1970. It was a season fo change for college athletics and for the University at Buffalo itself, which changed from a private college to a state university as one of the four main institutions of the SUNY system.

Dick Offenhamer is the undisputed king of Buffalo coaches. In a time before conference titles and “bowl tie-ins” Offenhamer built a program good enough to get invited to one of only 8 college bowl games in 1958. Buffalo was considered to tbe the best small college program in the nation and was invited to play in the Tangerine bowl. Sadly UB had to turn down the game because the venue would not allow two African American players to participate.

And Coach Offy’s 1958 squad was not a one off. Under Offenhamer’s 11 years the Bulls only had two losing seasons. 4-6 in 1960 and 4-5 in 1961. He boasted two 8-1 seasons, and five other winning seasons.

“Doc” Urich looked to continue that tradition, coming in as Buffalo’s new coach in 1966 and stringing together three winning seasons before being lured away by Northern Illinois University. At the time SUNY was being less than helpful with scholarship athletics and it made keeping him around difficult.

Frank Clair takes the thirs spot, here only two years Clair compiled a record of 12-4-1. But in 1950 Toronto of the CFL offered Clair a job and he decided to go pro. He coaches in the CFL for 19 years winning five Grey Cups.

Jim Peele get’s an honorable mention, if he was not the top of my list for the second era I probably would have put him in front of Claire. His 15-3 record in 1946 & 7 were the second best two-season run a Buffalo team had in the 20th century.