After over 20 Bulls entered the transfer portal and more than three declared for the NFL Draft, one thing is clear: head coach Maurice Linguist had some work to do this offseason.
Despite an underwhelming 2021 season with only four wins, Linguist has since hauled in the highest-ranked recruiting class in program history. The class ranked No. 1 in the MAC in terms of overall recruiting, according to 247Sports.
Here’s a look at the five highest-ranked recruits (not including transfers) from the 2022 recruiting class:
Devin Grant (athlete) — Holy Cross High School
Grant, the nephew of former Buffalo Bills safety Dean Marlowe, committed to UB last July and is the top-ranked recruit of the 2022 class. The 6-foot-3, 185 lb. defensive back is the fourth-ranked recruit in New York State and the second-highest ranked recruit in program history.
Throughout his three years on the varsity team at Holy Cross High School in Flushing, NY, Grant has shown versatility, lining up as a safety, wide receiver and quarterback.
The senior team captain mustered 44 solo tackles, six interceptions, two forced fumbles and two fumble recoveries on the defensive side of the ball last season. Grant was also a Swiss Army knife on offense as he tallied 1,867 yards last season — 973 passing, 834 rushing and 60 receiving.
Jayden Oliver (CB) — New Mexico Military Institute
The Tampa native is the second-ranked recruit of the 2022 class and the fifth highest-ranked recruit in UB football history. Oliver transferred from New Mexico Military Institute and is already on campus for the spring semester, making him eligible for the upcoming spring game.
The 6-foot-3, 175 lb. cornerback played in 13 games last season and racked up 14 solo tackles, 10 assisted tackles and three interceptions — good for All-SWJCFC Second Team. Oliver and the Broncos made a run for the NJCAA Division I national championship during his second season in New Mexico. The 25th-ranked junior college player in the country looks to be an instant contributor for a Bulls squad that gave up 221.2 passing yards per game last season.
Tre Hines (WR) — College of San Mateo
The wide receiver from the College of San Mateo announced his commitment to UB in December and enrolled for the spring 2022 semester, making him eligible for spring training and the spring game.
Hines, a star quarterback at Dublin High School (CA), threw for 1,768 yards and 15 touchdowns while rushing for 981 yards and 10 touchdowns in his senior season at Dublin. He then went on to play as a receiver at San Mateo, where he tallied 44 catches, 585 receiving yards and a touchdown in two seasons.
The three-star recruit had 13 receptions for 226 yards last season while averaging 17.4 yards per catch.
Jaylon Bass (DT) — Hutchinson Community College
The 6-foot-3, 300 lb. defensive tackle transferred to Buffalo after three seasons at Hutchinson Community College (KS). Bass is the fourth highest-ranked recruit in the 2022 class and the 12th-ranked recruit in program history.
The Ashland, Alabama native had 15 solo tackles and 26 assists in his 2021 campaign. The defensive tackle also recorded two sacks and six tackles for loss.
Bass led the Blue Dragons to consecutives KJCCC championships and a win in the 2021 Salt City Bowl.
At Clay Central High School, Bass earned First Team All-State in his senior campaign and made a run for the state championship.
Tavian Mayo (S) — Butler Community College
The fifth-ranked recruit of the class and the 14th-ranked player in UB football history is a JUCO product from Butler Community College (El Dorado, KS).
Mayo, a 5-foot-10, 166 lb. defensive back, had 20 tackles and five assists to average 3.1 tackles per game in his sole season with the Bulldogs in 2021.
Kayla Sterner is an assistant sports editor and can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org
Kayla Sterner is an assistant sports editor at The Spectrum. She is studying communications with the hopes of being a sideline reporter. In her spare time, she can be found in the gym, watching football or vibing to Mac Miller. Kayla is on Twitter @kaylasterner.