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2023 MAC Football Week 2 Game Recap: Fordham Rams 40, Buffalo Bulls 37

Fordham redeems their weak opening to the season, while Buffalo has some questions to answer.

NCAA Football: Coastal Carolina at Buffalo Nicholas LoVerde-USA TODAY Sports

For the second year in a row, the Buffalo Bulls (0-2) suffered a loss to lower-level program in a home opener, as the as the Fordham Rams said “public Ivy, public Schmivy” to the Buffalo Bulls in a 40-37 FCS/FBS upset special on Saturday night.

Fordham QB CJ Montes, who transferred in from New Mexico State in the offseason, continued his stellar 2023 campaign by trucking through the Buffalo defense for 309 yards and five touchdowns, while running back Julius Loughridge nearly doubled his to-that-point season rushing yards total by having a century day of 106 yards. The Rams managed to post up a staggering 459 yards of offense on Buffalo, with an incredible 11-of-19 third-down conversion rate and a 2-of-2 fourth-down conversion rate as a cherry on top.

Despite those dire numbers for the defense, it’s not like Buffalo completely bottled the game, either. For the most part, Cole Snyder matched Montes in terms of performance, completing a superb 80 percent of his passes for 265 yards and three touchdowns. The Bulls also ran for just shy of a hundred yards between Mike Washington and Ron Cook Jr., even after Snyder took -12 yards in sacks.

Marlyn Johnson put up a stellar display in the Solomon Jackson tribute jersey, with seven receptions for 105 yards and two touchdowns.

The Bulls defense certainly outperformed the mediocre Rams defensive unit, which failed to meaningfully improve on their lackluster performances this season thus far, delivering two sacks and nine tackles-for-loss. (Though it should be noted the Ramd defense did force two fumbles, recovering one.)

The difference ultimately came on special teams.

Fordham’s Brandon Peskin hit both of his field goal attempts and all four of his extra points, whereas Buffalo’s Alex McNulty hit all five of his XPs but missed a field goal that would’ve tied the game with 37 seconds remaining.

Buffalo welcomes Liberty (2-0, CUSA) to town next Saturday, and Fordham plays host to Stonehill (1-1, NEC), in what will be must-win games for both programs.