Friday, November 25, 2011

25 questions that say....Da Bulls.

What is their body of work?

They are 3-8/2-5 this year.  Much like BG, they are having their second straight disappointing season under a newish coach.  One of their wins is a FCS win.  They did beat OU on their home field, and only lost to NIU on a missed XP (sound familiar, Falcon fans).  They clubbed Akron last week.  They have been strong at home.

How many seniors and juniors on the two-deep?

25 which is pretty typical.

Who are their statistical leaders?

Khalil Mack is 8th in the nation in tackles for loss and Branden Oliver is 15th in rushing yards per game.

What is their turnover ratio?

They are -3 on the year (8th in the MAC).   (BG is -12).


How is their QB Play?

Their starter is Sr. Chazz Anderson and while he is not in the top 10 in passing efficiency, he is their second leading rusher.  Given BG's struggles with Harnish and Tettleton, this presents a nice challenge for the Falcons.

What is their scoring and yards per play?

They have struggled to score.  They are 11th in scoring and in yards per play.

Can they run the ball?

They are 6th in the MAC in rushing offense, so they have a decent running offense.

Do they pass the ball?

This is not a strong point.  They are 9th in passing offense and 11th in pass efficiency.  They complete only 58% of their passes and have 12 TDs over 8 ints. They average 10.75 per reception, which is also nothing special.

How is their run/pass balance?

They have almost an even-steven 50/50 run-pass split.

Do they convert on 3rd Down?

They are 11th at 32.9%.

Do they score in the red zone?

This is a also not a strength.  They only score 4.8 points per red zone trip.  They are just under 3 red zone trips per game.

Do they protect the quarterback?

They are decent, allowing sacks on only 5.1% of their passing attempts.

After playing the East's top offenses the last two games, BG now gets a team that has struggled to make progress on offense.  Having said that, they did light up Akron last week...yeah, probably not a great test.  Anyway, with a running QB there are challenges, but there's no reason for BG's defense not to compete out there.


Topline: Scoring and yards per play.

They are 6th in scoring defense and 6th in yards per play allowed, a couple of spots in front of BG.

Do they defend the run effectively?

They are 7th at 4.3 yards per carry.

Could they be passed on?

They are 11th in pass efficiency defense.  They allow 60% completions, but with 21 TDs over 4 INTS.  They allow over 12 yards per completion--teams with that 60% and 12 ypr tend to be having real trouble on pass defense.

Do they get off the field on 3rd down?

They are 9th in the MAC.

Do they defend in the red zone?

They are pretty average at 5.3 points per trip.  They are almost allowing 4 red zone trips per game.

Do they pressure the QB?

They get sacks on 5.2% of their passing attempts.

Special Teams:


They are 9th in the MAC in net punting with no blocks.

Punt Return?

They are 11th in punt return average with no TDs.  They have blocked 3 punts this year.


After the missed XP debacle, they switched kickers (just as BG did).  Clarke is 4-4 with a long of 49.


Teams start on the 31, 9th in the MAC.

Kickoff Return?

They are 10th in the MAC in kickoff returns, with no TDs.

Miscellaneous: Overall atmospherics and intangibles.

On paper, these teams are pretty evenly matched, both based on their records and what they have done statistically.  As Coach Clawson said, it will partly come down to who wants to play football in a game that doesn't mean anything in front of what I would anticipate will be absolutely no one in Buffalo.

Buffalo has been good at home this year which gives them an advantage.

After the NIU and OU games, BG is now playing a team that is flawed, which might well be a relief.  After playing OU tough until the final play, the Falcons could put that kind of effort on and win the game.

Also, we have heard nothing this week about BG's we don't know if there are any of the guys dinged up against OU who can be expected back.

If you love football, I think this could end up being a pretty good game.

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