2013 Buffalo Spring Football Analysis
Buffalo Bulls 2013 ...
Head Coach: Jeff Quinn
Why To Be Excited ... A little bit of an offensive boost will likely mean the difference between 4-8 and 6-6. If the UB offense is ever going to start working, it has to happen in 2013 with nine starters returning losing guard Graham Whinery and tackle Gokhan Ozkan off the right side. After being dinged up throughout last season, running back Branden Oliver is back along with dynamic young speedster Devin Campbell and veteran Brandon Murray. The quarterback play has to be better, but Joe Licata worked through the freshman kinks and should be a bit better, and receiver Alex Neutz should be among the league’s top targets.
| 2013 Schedule|
8/31 at Ohio State
9/7 at Baylor
9/14 Stony Brook
9/21 OPEN DATE
10/5 Eastern Michigan
10/12 at Western Michigan
10/26 at Kent State
11/12 at Toledo
11/19 at Miami
11/23 OPEN DATE
11/29 Bowling Green
Why To Be Grouchy ... The defensive front that was a big positive last season has to replace end Steven Means and nose guard Wyatt Cahill. Using a front three, the Bulls were outstanding against the run and held its own so Khalil Mack and the linebackers could fly into the backfield. However, Means was one of the team’s best pass rushers and was one of the team’s key veterans. The linebacking corps needs a few reinforcements to step up with Isaac Baugh, Dalonte Wallace, Imani Chatman and Scott Pettigrew out of the rotation.
What Needs Working On ...
The special teams need to be night and day better. The punting game was abysmal averaging a horrendous 32.75 yards per try in Tyler Grassman’s true freshman season, while the punt and kickoff returns games were non-existent. On the plus side, kicker Patrick Clarke had a good year with a few clutch field goals, but the coverage team was a disaster. For a team with so many concerns getting the offense moving, there’s no room to struggle in the third phase.
Non-Conference Games: at Ohio State, at Baylor, Stony Brook, Connecticut
Games Against The West: Eastern Michigan, at Western Michigan
Realistic Best Case Record: 7-5
Worst Case Record: 3-9
Likely Finish: 4-8
Pre-Preseason Projected Wins: Stony Brook, Eastern Michigan, UMass, Ohio
Pre-Preseason Projected Losses: at Ohio State, at Baylor, Connecticut, at Western Michigan, at Kent State, at Toledo, Bowling Green
Schedule Analysis: After catching a beating at Ohio State and Baylor to start out the year, the Bulls get a break with Stony Brook in the home opener followed up by a potentially interesting upset shot against Connecticut. Eastern Michigan is a must win to start the MAC season followed up by a road trip to Western Michigan and another winnable home game against UMass. And then comes the nastiest conference stretch on the slate with three road games in four weeks and the lone home game coming against Ohio. Closing out at home against Bowling Green won’t be easy.
Team Concerns For 2013: The offense has to match the defense. Can the attack score? After coming up with just one game of 30 points or more against an FCS team, the offense needs to be far more efficient passing the ball needing help from an offensive line that's been average in pass protection. The special teams have to be far better after a miserable season punting and with little pop in the return game averaging just 18.9 yards per kickoff return and 5.08 yards per punt try.
The 2013 Class Is Heavy On ... Receivers. There weren't many spots open in the recruing class after a few huge hauls, and once again the Bulls are going after the passing game. JUCO linebacker Blake Bean is an interesting option to help on the outside right away and quarterback James Coleman will be groomed to be in the mix in 2016. Receivers Jamarl Eiland out of Michigan and DuBois Ross are the two best players in the class, but it might take a few years before they make any sort of impact.
2012 CFN Recruiting Ranking: 97. That Class Was Heavy On ... The passing game is getting the attention with more options coming in to push for the job in the near future. There are some players already in place, including part-time starter Alex Zordich, but the Bulls need an upgrade. Turner Gill went after quarterbacks and receivers a few years ago, and Jeff Quinn is looking down the road when that class matures. Improving the secondary is also needed, and Quinn is bringing in enough to address the losses to come in 2014.
2011 CFN Recruiting Ranking: 104. That Class Was Heavy On ... Defensive linemen. After focusing more on trying to get the passing game going last year, and beefing up the offensive line, this year’s class is about trying to upgrade the defensive front. There’s nice bulk coming in with the 272-pound Kendall Patterson and the 285-pound Patrick Williams to clog things up, while Joe Feliecia and Brandon Tammaro are dangerous prospects for the outside. JUCO transfer Wyatt Cahill will play right away at one end.
2010 CFN Recruiting Ranking: 109. That Class Was
Heavy On ... The passing game.
Turner Gill had loaded up with so many big classes
that the program didn't just go light last year, but
it didn't need a whole bunch this year, either. New
head coach Jeff Quinn was looking for guys he could
develop, and Rudy Johnson might be the quarterback
of the future if he doesn't move to another spot. RB
James Potts might be an instant impact performer,
while there are some nice receiver prospects to get
2009 CFN Recruiting Ranking: 115. That Class Was
Heavy On ... Offensive line. The small class didn’t get much in the way of bulk talent, but a few decent offensive linemen, especially at guard, are coming in to build for the future. There aren’t a lot of holes to fill right away with depth already built in from the last two classes, and this class showed it.