The University at Buffalo football team, which achieved bowl eligibility for just the third time in program history and the first time under third-year coach Lance Leipold, was not invited to a bowl game.
Sunday was the official day that bowl placements were made for 39 games, from the national championship semifinals on down.
Buffalo became bowl eligible with a victory in its season finale when it beat Ohio, 31-24. It was the third straight win for the Bulls; Ohio was 5-2 in the Mid-American Conference and 8-3 overall going into the game.
UB finished third in the MAC East division with a 4-4 record and was 6-6 overall. A .500 record is the minimum standard for bowl eligibility.
UB athletic director Allan Greene posted this letter at UBBulls.com:
Today we learned that we were not selected to play in a bowl game. While this was difficult news to take, it in no way tarnishes the fine season our football team had. We finished the year with six wins, the third-most as a FBS program. It was a tremendous accomplishment for our team.
There was a lot to be excited about in 2017. Battling injury and adversity, we won the final three games of the regular season for the first time as a FBS program to earn bowl eligibility. We threw for a school-record 3,490 yards and rolled up over 5,000 yards of total offense for just the second time as an FBS program.
We featured a number of talented players like wide receiver Anthony Johnson who ranked third in the nation in receiving yards and touchdown catches and linebacker Khalil Hodge who ranked second in the country in tackles.
Who could forget the thrilling seven-overtime game against Western Michigan at UB Stadium which went down as the highest-scoring game in college football history? It was one of the close losses that we will learn from to make us better.
We are so proud of all the alumni and fans in the Western New York Community and across the country that stepped up and voiced their support for the Bulls over the past week in an effort to earn a bowl invite. Your voices did not go unheard by our players, coaches and staff.
Looking ahead, the 2018 season should be an exciting one with a number of key players returning, including four of our five All-MAC players. We will build on our successful 2017 campaign and expect to compete for a MAC Championship in 2018.
To that end, your support in the stands is more important than ever before. Please consider purchasing season tickets to show the bowl committees that UB fans have a true passion for football in WNY.
Thank you again for your support, Bulls fans, and we look forward to seeing you at UB Stadium in 2018!