Eastern Michigan (2-1) returns from its two game road trip to face the Buffalo Bulls in a MAC matchup a week removed from a two-score win over the Arizona State Sun Devils, which indirectly resulted in the firing of Herm Edwards as ASU’s head coach.
The Bulls (0-3), meanwhile, are coming off a two-score loss to the Coastal Carolina Chanticleers, building up a two-possession lead in the first half before allowing the Chants to come back and nearly double them up on the scoreboard.
The Bulls offense is led by quarterback Cole Snyder, a former Rutgers transfer, who has a 59 percent completion rate for an average of 243 yards per game. He has thrown five touchdowns and two picks. The leading receiver for the Bulls is Justin Marshall, a former Louisville Cardinal who averages 83 yards per game. He is followed by Quian Williams (a former Eagle) with 65 yards per game. The Buffalo rushing attack averages 108 yards per game and is led by Mike Washington with 49 yards per game and Ron Cook Jr. with 36 yards per game.
The Bulls score 23 points per game and give up 35 points per game. On the ground, they give up 196 yards per game and in the air, they give up 273 yards per game.
The Eagles are likely to start with Taylor Powell unless the injuries in the game last week prevent it. Powell was pulled early in the Arizona State game after suffering an injury, eventually forced to cede way. So far, he has a 66 percent completion rate for 227 yards per game, with four touchdowns and five picks. He is backed by Austin Smith, who adds a decent running game to his repertoire. Running back Samson Evans is coming off an awesome game where he ran for 258 yards against a fairly decent Power Five defense. Smith and Evans combined for a read-option attack which stifle the ASU defense last week, and serve as good options for the Eagles in case Powell goes down again.
Eastern still looks like they are going to continue the multi-headed receiver approach, with receivers Tanner Knue, Hassan Beydoun, Dylan Drummond and tight end Gunnar Oakes so far proving capable in the receiving game.
If Eastern Michigan can build on the win they had last weekend, things should look pretty good in Ypsilanti. If current stats hold up, I don’t see how Buffalo can pull off the win but then again, that’s why they play the game.
I think if Eastern can continue their success on the ground, there will be good things.