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UB Capsule: Bowling Green rallying at end of bad year

UB (2-9) at Bowling Green (3-8)

2:30 p.m. Saturday at Doyt Perry Stadium

Radio: 1520 AM. Online: ESPN3

Last time out: UB was game for a half but then was blown out by Western Michigan, 38-0. Bowling Green won its second straight, 42-7, over Kent State, thanks to 420 rushing yards. The week before, Bowling Green ran over Akron, 38-28.

Trending: What has happened to the defending Mid-American Conference champions? Bowling Green lost head coach Dino Babers to Syracuse and star quarterback Matt Johnson to graduation. Johnson passed for 46 TDs and eight INTs last season. Bowling Green’s QBs have combined for 19 TDs and 25 INTs this year. Meanwhile, Bowling Green’s defense, which was underwhelming last season, has struggled. The Falcons lost early games at Ohio State, 77-10, and at Memphis, 77-3. Nevertheless, Bowling Green has been more competitive in the MAC than UB, even before its recent win streak. The Falcons lost by three to Eastern Michigan, six to Ohio and seven to Toledo.

Stat check: UB’s offense now is 126th out of 128 in the nation in scoring at 16.3 ppg. . . . UB’s defense is giving up 35.1 ppg in conference. Bowling Green’s defense is allowing 31.4 ppg in conference.

Star gazing: Bowling Green still has more team speed than UB, which is a big reason the Falcons have won five straight over the Bulls. BG senior RB Fred Coppet (No. 28) had 870 yards this season and 2,681 for his career. Senior WR Ronnie Moore (5) has 2,691 career receiving yards. . . . Bowling Green benched QB James Knapke in Week Five in favor of red-shirt freshman James Morgan (12). He’s 6-foot-4, 213 pounds and has shown flashes of being special. He passed for 335 yards against Toledo and 389 vs. Miami Ohio. . . . RT Ryan Hunter (68) is a junior from Canisius High School who will make his 26th career start.

At stake: Bowling Green would like to send its senior class out with a win. UB could use something (anything?) to feel good about at the end of a bad year.

Prediction: Bowling Green 28, UB 10.

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