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For UB football, Jaret Patterson's shoes still a good fit

For UB football, Jaret Patterson's shoes still a good fit

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Undersized and overlooked, Patterson makes Washington roster

FILE - In this Aug. 24, 2021, file photo, Washington Football Team running back Jaret Patterson runs a drill during practice at the team's NFL football training facility in Ashburn, Va. Patterson made the team thanks to an impressive training camp and preseason. Now the 5-foot-8 dynamo is getting praise from Barry Sanders and those who know him best expect Patterson to take the league by storm.

Jaret Patterson will always have a foot – or at least a pair of cleats – on the ground with the University at Buffalo football program.

Patterson, one of UB's most prolific running backs, is now with the Washington Football Team of the NFL. His twin brother, James, is a linebacker with the Bulls, and the Patterson family was in town this week for UB's season opener on Thursday against Wagner. 

While in Western New York, the Patterson family bestowed a gift upon the UB football program Friday morning: Patterson's game-worn, autographed Nike cleats from his record rushing game against Kent State in November of 2020 at UB. 

Janine Patterson, Jaret's mother, posted Friday on her Twitter account a photo of her husband, Leroy, giving Jaret's cleats to UB coach Maurice Linguist earlier in the day in the UB football facility.  

Patterson ran for eight touchdowns and 409 yards in UB's 70-41 win against Kent State on Nov. 28, 2020. Patterson tied an NCAA record for touchdowns in a game, and set Mid-American Conference records for rushing touchdowns and rushing yards in a game. He also set a UB program record for rushing yards and rushing touchdowns in a game.

Patterson tied a national single-game record for touchdowns that was set by Illinois' Howard Griffith in 1990 (eight rushing touchdowns), and tied by Arizona State's Kalen Ballage in 2016 (seven rushing touchdowns, one receiving touchdown). 

Jaret Patterson is one of three running backs who made the 53-man roster for the Washington Football Team earlier this week; he grew up in Glenn Dale, Md., a few miles away from FedEx Field in Landover, Md., where WFT plays its home games.

James Patterson, meanwhile, is having no problem following in his brother's footsteps, only on the defensive side for the Bulls. He was a game captain for the Bulls on Thursday and had five tackles in UB's 69-7 rout of Wagner in its season opener at UB Stadium.

UB (1-0) plays at 3:30 p.m. Sept. 11 at Nebraska. 

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College/high school sports enterprise reporter

I'm a college/high school sports enterprise reporter at The Buffalo News. I've worked in sports journalism since 1997 and I have covered everything from college football to the Stanley Cup playoffs, high school sports and the NCAA Tournament.

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