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UB football gameday: Colgate at Buffalo

Kickoff: 6 p.m.


Radio: 1520 AM

Records: Buffalo 0-2, Colgate 1-1

Game day: Tickets are $30. Gates open at 4:30 p.m. with the Tailgate Concert Series beginning at 4 p.m. Jana Kramer is the headliner with Eric Van Houten as the opening act.

Last time out: The Bulls fell to 0-2 with a 21-17 loss at Army West Point, giving up two fourth-quarter touchdowns to the Black Knights in the loss. UB had taken a 17-7 halftime lead before Army used drives of 79 and 66 yards, capped with 1-yard touchdown runs, to earn the win.

Colgate is coming off a 20-17 loss to Richmond, ranked ninth in the FCS Coaches Poll. Richmond kicked a 27-yard field goal with 1:29 left to earn that win. The Raiders earned a key win the first week of the season, knocking off Cal Poly, ranked 23rd in the FCS poll.

History: The teams first met on the gridiron in 1898. Buffalo won that game, 23-0. They met 15 more times, the last being 2003 when Colgate earned a 38-15 win at UB Stadium.

About those FCS schools: The Bulls aren't likely to take anyone for granted, even those from the FCS level. After all, UB lost to Albany, 22-16, in last year's season opener.

"Colgate is going to be a very good challenge for us," UB coach Lance Leipold said. "I think last year losing our opener to an FCS opponent in Albany is definitely one that we can refer to quickly that you don't overlook anyone depending on the level that we're categorized to play in. There's many examples again this year in college football, and it happens every year, where FCS opponents beat FBS schools.

"That said, some fine players. They're well-coached. On the flip side, it's still going to be what we do and that's where we have to make sure we're focusing on executing, doing what we have to do to close that gap and control what we can."

Trending: Buffalo junior linebacker Khalil Hodge leads the nation in tackles, averaging 15.5 per game. In the season-opener against Minnesota, Hodge had a career-high 20 tackles. He followed that up with 11 against Army. Hodge continues to build off his sophomore season where had 123 tackles, tied for eighth-most in school history for a single season.

Looking for a win: Desperate may be too strong of a word, but the Bulls really need a win. Like as soon as possible. The confines of UB Stadium may be helpful as the Bulls have won six of their last seven home openers.

What also can help is the attitude of the players, one that is not happy with noble efforts.

"We're obviously very disappointed being 0-2 right now, but by no means are we discouraged on where we're heading," Leipold said. "Our young men are going about it the right way. They're putting everything into it. They're working to get better. They're being coachable. They see in the results that we are a better football team than we were a year ago in many ways. Now we've got to find a way to shorten that small gap right now of three to five plays that can make a difference in a game."

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