Kent State has not won a game against an FBS opponent since they scraped by Central Michigan on October 29th of last season. Their next attempt to end that six-game streak will come on Saturday when they host the Buffalo Bulls in their first conference matchup of the season. One of their three wins in 2016 came on the road at Buffalo.
Kent State (1-3, 0-0 MAC) will ride into Dix Stadium on Saturday off a 42-3 loss at Louisville in week four. The Flashes scored a total of 44 points over the course of their four game non-conference schedule with the team’s lone win coming against FCS opponent Howard. They’ve also been tested by defending national champions Clemson; a matchup that ended in a 56-3 loss.
On the other side of the ball, the Buffalo Bulls (2-2, 0-0 MAC) will storm into Dix Stadium looking to get revenge on the Flashes after they fell 44-20 last year at home. The Bulls’ non-conference schedule was highlighted by matchups on the road at P.J. Fleck’s Minnesota squad and at Army West Point, both of those being close losses. Their wins came against bottom tier Conference USA opponent Florida Atlantic and FCS opponent Colgate.
Players to Watch
Derek Adams, P, Kent State
Yes, I’ve mentioned him before as a player to watch. And, yes, he’s a punter. The fact of the matter with Kent State is that has stood out this year for the Flashes. Adams has punted a lot and he has been good at it, averaging 45.4 yards per punt on 30 punts, including an astounding 511 yards against Clemson.
Buffalo is an opponent that the Kent State offense should get going against, but it’s nice to know that there’s someone behind the long snap that can pin an average Bulls offense deep in their own zone, especially with the Bulls so banged up.
Emmanuel Reed, RB, Buffalo
The Bulls have given the ball to Reed 48 times in the last two games, and he’s picked up 227 yards. Against a Kent State defense that has given up 353 rush yards on 50 attempts the last two weeks, Reed should get his touches. The Bulls have shifted over to a run-first offense in recent weeks, keeping to the ground about two of every three plays (115 rushes to 43 passes over the last two games,) so suddenly Reed, previously a third-stringer, will have plenty of chances to show his worth.
Where: Dix Stadium in Kent, Ohio.
When: 3:30 p.m. EST on Sat., Sept. 30, 2017.
TV/Streaming: ESPN3, WatchESPN and the ESPN App. Check with your local cable provider for more information.
Weather (as of publication): At kickoff, it is expected to be 65 degrees and partly cloudy, with winds at around 11 MPH. Cahnce of rain about 10 percent, per the Weather Channel.