Get to know an opponent: Bowling Green

The Bulls are heavy favorites heading into Bowling Green Tuesday night

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Coming off a dominant 42-10 victory over Miami (OH) (1-1), UB Football (2-0) heads to Bowling Green to take on the (0-2) Falcons Tuesday night.

Following a disappointing 3-9 2019 record, Bowling Green is doing more of the same in 2020. 

The Falcons lost their first two games by a combined 73 points: a 35 point loss to Toledo in week one and a 38 point loss to Kent State in week two.

BGSU’s defense has been gashed throughout the first two weeks, giving up a conference-worst 595.5 yards per game. 

The Bulls, on the other hand, are taking care of business. With two lopsided victories over Northern Illinois and Miami (OH), the media’s preseason favorite is living up to the high expectations.

Despite being the away team, the Bulls are a whopping 30 point favorite for Tuesday night’s matchup against the Falcons.

UB won last season’s matchup by a dominant 49-7 margin, with the Falcons being uncompetitive for a majority of the contest.

Over the past three seasons, the Bulls have manhandled the Falcons. UB has won their last three against Bowling Green by an average of 27 points.

Here’s what to expect from the winless Falcons Tuesday night on the CBS Sports Network: 

Coach: Scot Loeffler, 3-11, second season at Bowling Green.

Looking Back

Handed the keys to a rebuilding program, Scot Loeffler had low expectations entering his first season at BGSU.

Let’s say those expectations were “met.”

Bowling Green had the second-worst record in the MAC last year, with three more wins than 0-12 Akron.

The Falcons finished near the bottom of the conference in nearly every major statistical category last season, giving up a conference-worst 38.6 points per game on defense and scoring just 16 points per game on offense.

Bowling Green had just two members receive All-MAC honors last season, with tight end Quintin Morris named second-team All-MAC and linebacker Kholbe Coleman named to the All-MAC third team.

Morris led the Falcons with 55 catches for 649 yards and four touchdown receptions, while Coleman recorded 103 total tackles, 4.5 tackles for loss and 2 sacks.

The Falcons had two quarterbacks start last season, with Grant Loy and Darius Wade both receiving action under center. 

After three seasons at Boston College and one at Delaware, Wade transferred to BSU for his final season. He started the season as starting QB, throwing for 751 yards and three touchdowns. After a 1-4 start, Wade was benched in favor of then-redshirt junior Loy.

Loy started in the team’s final seven games, throwing for 1,137 yards, six touchdowns and nine interceptions. After graduating from BGSU, Loy headed to Auburn as a graduate transfer.

Bowling Green struggled on both sides of the ball, ranking last in the MAC in both offensive and defensive efficiency.

Looking Forward

Bowling Green’s 2019 struggles have followed them into 2020, as the Falcons have been uncompetitive in their first two games.

Following a season with inconsistent quarterbacks, BGSU hoped to have some stability with the position this year.

In a recurring theme for Bowling Green, the Falcons can’t escape last years’ woes.

After being named starting quarterback, Matt McDonald has struggled through two games.

McDonald threw for 233 yards while completing a dreadful 28% of his passes. The Boston College transfer has thrown no touchdown passes and two interceptions two games into the season.

Quintin Morris, last year’s leading receiver, has just four catches for 37 yards. The team’s leading receiver — Noah Massey — has just 3 catches for 66 yards. 

The Falcons run game hasn’t been much better either, but saw a glimmer of hope in the fourth quarter against Kent State. Making his Bowling Green debut freshman Terion Stewart carried the ball 14 times for 162 yards and two touchdowns — all in the fourth quarter. With his fourth quarter alone, Stewart is the team leader in rushing yards and touchdowns.

On defense, the Falcons secondary has defended just seven passes, giving up 293 yards a game through the air, second-worst in the MAC. BGSU has also given up a conference-worst 302.5 rushing yards per game.

Through two games, Loeffler’s squad has had difficulty being competitive with two ugly performances. 

Bottom Line

The Bulls will go into Tuesday night’s game as the far superior team. Based on Bowling Green’s last two performances, UB could sleepwalk and still manage to win the game. The Bulls should be able to dominate the Falcons on both sides of the ball and advance to 3-0 on the season. 

UB’s performance will be reflective of the coaching staff’s emphasis on staying focused despite preparing for an inferior opponent. The Bulls should head into Doyt L. Perry Stadium and win this one easily.

Anthony DeCicco is the Senior Sports Editor and can be reached at anthony.decicco@ubspectrum.com and on Twitter @DeCicco42.

ANTHONY DECICCO


Anthony Decicco is the senior sports editor for The Spectrum.