The Buffalo Bulls defense held UConn to 27 yards rushing on Saturday afternoon in a 41-12 victory.
Defense helps Bulls dominate Huskies.
Joe Konze Jr Reporting
AMHERST-- Before Saturday’s game against UConn (0-4), senior outside linebacker Adam Redden made a bet with senior linebacker Khalil Mack.
If Mack had more sacks than Redden, then Redden - the team barber, would have to give Mack a free haircut.
If Redden had more sacks, then Mack would have to buy Redden chicken wings.
Redden lined up on a third and five play early in the first quarter and the ball was snapped. He watched the play happen and thought to himself ‘here is my chance; I’m going to make the best of it.’
Redden rushed the edge and beat his man, as he met the UConn quarterback in the backfield, he jarred the ball loose, and returned it to the 19 yard line, giving the offense great field position.
“[It was a] good game plan, we executed it all week in practice,” Redden said. “When it came down to the game, it was like butter; just smooth.”
The Bulls (2-2) defense held the Huskies to just 27 yards on 39 carries en route to a 41-12 victory in front of a crowd of 20,952 at UB Stadium.
Redden, who had a career-best 17 tackles against Stony Brook, finished the game with five tackles, two sacks a forced fumble and a fumble recovery.
He also had more sacks than Mack.
“Every single day I see what he brings to practice and to that locker room,” said head coach Jeff Quinn. “And certainly you saw it again out there on that field.
And that’s what I love about those kinds of players that play with passion.”
Mack finished with eight tackles, a sack and 1.5 tackles for a loss.
Offensively, the Bulls would get all they would need behind the arm of sophomore quarterback Joe Licata and the legs of senior running back Branden Oliver.
Licata finished the game 177 yards passing and a career-high three touchdowns on just 10 completions.
“Our offensive line did a great job, they were worried about [our backs],” Licata said. “[When] those guys run, they give us windows to throw the ball.”
Oliver, who missed the last game against Stony Brook with an injury, carried the ball 23 times for 99 yards and a touchdown.
Senior wide receiver duo Fred Lee and Alex Neutz also contributed to the mix of the offense’s assault.
Each had a touchdown.
“Fred, after he scored the touchdown said to me ‘see man, I can do it, I can be your sidekick,’” Licata said. “Batman needs a Robin and Fred is a Robin I guess.”
The Bulls will open their Mid-American Conference play next week at home against Eastern Michigan (1-3, 0-1 MAC).