We haven't quite hit August yet, but we're getting closer to fall and the return of UB Athletics. UB put out the 2015 Information Guide today, 94 pages of stats, names, updated records, and good stuff to get us ready for September 5th.
If you don't want to pick through 94 pages' worth right now, here's the highlights:
The Schedule & TV Information
You should know the schedule already, but I bring this up to highlight the TV/broadcast options. Other than a pair of weeknight games that could be pawned off to CBS Sports Network and the FAU game, everything should be available. Let's just hope UB, Kent State, and Miami stay out of the cellar so one of the other games those weeks is sent to CBS.
The offense, as we've been saying for a bit, looks to be in good shape. Even the line, which lost three starters, returns a pair of giants in Blodgett and Kling. More than half the defense is gone, but with a healthy Marqus Baker joining the converted Boise Ross and Okezie Alozie, the secondary should take a step forward.
They didn't include Tyler Grassman in this bit, but they really should have, because he's awesome and on pace to sit only behind Ben Woods in UB punting history.
Considering the midseason coaching change, and then the move from Alex Wood quickly after the season, UB did a good job to avoid too many transfers from 2014 to 2015. The move to hire Leipold was done quickly and efficiently and UB was able to bring him very shortly after the season ended and before uncertainty could set in.
Nothing too complication this year, but we want to sound like insiders all the same. I think "Therrien" is the most counterintuitive.
Nothing entirely new, but two bits of trivia I liked:
- Six different players completed a pass for UB in 2014. Three through touchdowns. All return.
- UB converted two two-point conversions in 2014, both on passes. Marcus McGill caught one. The other? Tyler Grassman.
Updated Record Books and Other Stuff
Anthone Taylor's three 200+ yard games all cracked the all-time UB Top Ten in both single-game rushing yards and single-game rushing attempts. It will now take 217 yards or 36 carries to change the list again.
On the season scale, Taylor cracked the record books in total rushing yards (2nd), attempts (3rd), touchdowns (T-6), yards per carry (T-8), and 100-yard games (T-3).
In the career books, Taylor sits sixth but could feasibly catch James Starks to move into second with 1,318 yards. He'll likely move into fifth in all-time carries and second in 100-yard games by season's end. He currently sits fourth in yards per carry, and should move into the top ten in career touchdowns quickly.
Joe Licata only placed three games into the single-game lists: Army (passing yards, passing touchdowns, total attempts, total completions) and Akron and UMass (passing touchdowns). In the single-season lists, though, Licata's 2014 is UB's best-ever by QB rating and passing touchdowns, and cracks the top five in yards, completions, attempts, completion percentage, and yards per attempt.
Career-wise, Licata is 2,232 yards, 306 completions, and 412 attempts from catching Drew Willy, and will almost certainly finish only behind Willy in any of those three if he doesn't catch Drew. Joe of course is already the UB record holder in passing touchdowns, is the current leader in QB rating, and is tied for second all-time in completion percentage.
Ron Willoughby's nine receiving touchdowns just barely cracked into the single-season list there.
On the all-purpose lists, it's the Licata Show. He'll pass Cliff Scott for most TDs in school history against Albany, and will likely set a new school mark for total offense.
Devin Campbell put together another great year returning kicks and is now just 20 returns and 80 return yards away from becoming UB's all-time leader in those marks. If only he'd been used more on offense over the years.
With so much skill returning on offense, it's unlikely Tyler Grassman puts up too big a year punting, but he should move into second all-time in total yards.
Lee Skinner, Adam Redden, and Cortney Lester cracked some of the defensive lists, but all are gone now.
UB set new team-wide records in passing touchdowns and total offense. The Baylor game saw the most yards by an opponent in UB history and the third-largest crowd in UB Stadium history.
UB has played 886 games in its history. No snow cancellations and a MAC Championship appearance would make the team's third bowl game #900. Barring that, Buffalo's first or second game of 2016 will be the milestone.