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Topics - enrique14150

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1
Buffalo Bulls Basketball / Daemen
« on: November 03, 2017, 10:50:49 PM »
Walking in, hearing the band in full force, as we passed by the trophy case, brought a smile to my face.  It felt great to be back. 

First of all, props to Daemen, they came to play, and MacDonald is a good coach at that level.  Their school brings as many (or more) fans than Canisius or Niagara does, plus cheerleaders, a good job by them getting their program going with some support.  UB wasn't going to get anything out of a preseason game they didn't have to try in, so this was a good exercise.  They shut down Daemen's outside shooting in the second half and that closed it out.  I felt that until the last 10 minutes UB didn't do a good enough job of getting position under the basket on either end.  It meant they fouled guys, didn't box out, and didn't get those second and third chance buckets.  In the first half Daemen played their zone and UB was having a little trouble with it. 

Harris - looks ready to be one of the guys leading the team.  Kinda like Hamilton he can play anywhere on the floor, hit any shot, and his athleticism on defense and going up for rebounds is really mpressive.
Reese - very athletic, confident, huge potential there
Jordan - seems a little more polished this year, what you'd expect from a sophomore. 
Carruthers - still a pest on defense, still had trouble consistently hitting shots.
Perkins - when he realized that none of these guys at this level could stop him underneath, he displayed great touch around the hoop and bulldozed them.
Graves - doesn't seem as ready as Reese but made some plays.  Another guy with a lot of potential
CJ - came off the bench, but did what he does - when others are just passing around the perimeter, he will take it to the hoop and draw some fouls, break open the defense.
McRae - needs better positioning and reaction, when that was off he got caught fouling guys.  If they can smooth his game out his size and reach are going to be vital inside in league play.
Bertram - finally got to see him play.  He has the size, not quite the confidence yet, but he doesn't move his feet or react quick enough yet.  He'll be effective if he can set himself up positionally under the net for rebounds.  But he was fouling guys because he was a step slow reacting to things, that has to get better.

The band sounded great - was it the football band's game?  I know it's not spelled the same but can we get the return of the "Tubas are McRae-niacs" sign? 

This team looks so deep right now.  Just look at the guard rotation - Jordan, Carruthers, Graves, CJ, Reese - and that's not even counting Clark yet.  I kinda feel bad for James Jones, having to try to crack that depth chart.   It feels like they have two sets of guys who are almost equally good.

I will give a nice cheer for Reggie next Saturday before the game but after that please destroy Canisius.

2
Buffalo Bulls Basketball / Central Miss-again
« on: January 31, 2017, 10:30:46 PM »
How often we harken back to the Central Miss-again of old, the team with the Ziegler(s) show.  These guys are much more competent.  THIS is how we know the Bulls can play, which is why it's so frustrating when they don't.  Hamilton stepped up huge tonight.  Central's guards were very good, though it sure seems like the travel every time they drive in.  They were big in the first half but UB ground them down in the second.   The Bulls did a great job guarding the perimeter too, against a team that's one of the best in the nation from behind the arc.  Not much bad to say about today - they actually ran with a high scoring team and came out with the win.  Guards had to be big today and they were. 

Great to see the students and the band back, the place had more life in it.  I wonder how many of them were new to the scene - it sure seemed like there should've been a lot more noise coming from the end zone than there was.  Make noise on defense!  Please, please, please.  Too many people standing around trying to look cool in case they showed up on the jumbotron.

3
Buffalo Bulls Basketball / Maine - 12/30
« on: December 30, 2016, 10:02:50 PM »
This team needed to get back on the winning side of things, so this game was actually important despite being a non-conference one over break.  It was quickly clear that Maine came to shoot from outside and wanted no part in taking on UB in the paint.  That worked for a little while, and at the beginning of the second half.  They'd hit shots out there if they were open.  But the Bulls got serious on defense - finally - in the second half and took those looks away.  They started boxing out too.  Somehow Maine actually out-rebounded them by one today, but not in that stretch in the second half where UB took final control of the game.  It was the kind of game you thought UB didn't play all that spectacular but they got the job done and started doing things the right way again.

Hamilton and Conner - one of those games where they each had double-digits in points but you wondered how.  Conner is either hot, or he drifts in and out of the game on offense.
CJ - has such a great release and touch on his shots.
Perkins - I feel like he's capable of dominating opponents like this and I'm waiting for him to do so.
Carruthers - huge credit to him today, he put in the serious work on defense and drew 3 or 4 charges himself.  That kind of effort is contagious.  He was a pest out at the top of the key too.
Nikola - had a couple nice moves, and a nice assist to the next guy...
Pino - "Pino Time" is like "Gino Time" for the Celtics - it's the official sign that the game is wrapped up.  I think he took more shots today than all last year combined.  Nice put away under the net on the pass from Rakikovic.
Smart - always looks like he's going to brick his free throws but he hits them just right, obviously puts a lot of practice into it.
McKinzie - as we've said before, his athleticism is continually impressive.  As he gets to read and anticipate the game better, he'll cut out some of the fouls.  He's going to be a really interesting player in the games and seasons ahead.

The crowd - what can you say, the students are on break so there's not much noise, but a good showing from the community on a cold Friday night.

4
Buffalo Bulls Basketball / Coppin State
« on: December 11, 2016, 01:17:44 AM »
The easy win they needed at this point.  This game wasn't a game anymore after 10 minutes.  Coppin tried to clog the area under the net, deny UB anything inside, so it depended on the Bulls shooting from outside.  Whatever, CJ was back, Conner was on fire, no problem.  With CJ back there the turnovers are down and the team looks much more balanced.  The one thing I'll nit-pick about today: rebounding.  I thought they allowed Coppin too many offensive rebounds, and didn't get in good positions on offense themselves.  It didn't make a difference today but it would against a better team.

Coppin State - they had a guy who shot an air-ball free-throw.  And several air-balls during warmups for the second half.

Perkins - didn't have to do much.  Looks like a beast out there though, looking forward to him playing like it regularly.
Hamilton - again, didn't have to do much, but had some assists.
Conner - when you're shooting that well, keep shooting. His and CJ's three's blew the game open.
CJ - careful with the ball, hits his shots, picked up where he left off last year.  Exactly what this team needs right now.
McKinzie - is going to be really interesting going forward.  Has the athleticism to make plays at both ends.
Jordan and Carruthers - with CJ back, they don't have to carry as much of the load in the back-court.  Both have tons of potential.

Good to see a decent crowd for an afternoon game that wasn't much of a contest.  I usually complement the band but they were a bit off today, especially for the fight song to start things off.  I like how the fan-base has gotten to the point where we can bring in a no-name opponent in the afternoon and still get a good turnout.

5
Buffalo Bulls Basketball / Bona 12/3/16
« on: December 03, 2016, 07:32:00 PM »
I have mixed feelings for this one, aside from the regular revulsion for all things Bonaventure.  I'm happy how they competed well on the road with an A-10 team (whatever you think of Bona, and I'm never terribly impressed, it's A-10).  I'm annoyed with the turnovers and generally sloppy play, evident especially in the first half.  After a sloppy first half they played a lot better in the second.  I hope that in a month or two we look at this challenging stretch as a time when the team learned a lot of lessons, improved to the point they could make a run in conference play.  20 turnovers, and a lack of getting to the line for foul shots, was probably the difference today.

Perkins - after being held scoreless at Creighton, returned to his scoring ways today.  The kind of game we are starting to expect from him now.
Hamilton - turned it up second half.
Raheem - big contribution off the bench.  I expect him to use his athleticism around the basket like that.  Nice touch around the net - 6 for 6.
Jordan - continues to improve, and all this playing time is going to accelerate that.  He and Carruthers are still prone to turnovers but Jordan hit some shots today.

6
Buffalo Bulls Football / Looking Forward Already
« on: November 25, 2016, 10:46:40 PM »
Thankfully we're able to finally put a fork in this season.  You knew it was going to be a long, tough slog after losing to freaking Albany in week one.  Ok Lance, you had your rebuilding year.  Time to show some real progress next year, otherwise we're going to be seriously worried.

Offseason:

Need to keep an eye on what recruits they can get and if anyone transfers.  If there are problems with both, it's going to be tough to get people excited going into the fall.  They have to be able to build on the experience that guys got this year.

Next year:

1. So far they've had a nice transition from year-to-year with starting running backs, guys who were impact players but backups were able to step up the next year and start.  Is Hawkins going to be that guy?
2. Obviously Tyree is the starter.  It'll be Year Three with the team, time to stop the freshman mistakes and get more consistent with the quality of his throws.  He'll have three senior receivers - Eiland, Holsey, Martinez - but no Schreck.
3. Offensive line should be an experienced unit.  On defense, the safeties are back, so are the linebackers, but the d-line loses a few. 

It's too soon to get too optimistic or pessimistic, but I think Lance needs to get back up to at least 5 wins next year to show that there's progress being made.  Another 2- or 3-win season and that's a big problem.

7
Buffalo Bulls Basketball / Canisius - Nov 28
« on: November 28, 2015, 01:35:35 AM »
Please crush these posers.

8
General Discussion / Branding Survey
« on: September 18, 2015, 08:42:38 PM »
I sent in my response months ago and forgot to check for the results.  Someone pointed them out today - perhaps they've been for a while now?  Anyway - as a Buffalo guy, very pleased that the majority feedback was UB or University at Buffalo.  Thanks.

http://www.buffalo.edu/brand/news.host.html/content/shared/www/brand/news/Phase1-Discovery1.detail.html

9
Buffalo Bulls Basketball / Buffalo at Akron
« on: February 07, 2015, 09:51:47 PM »
Any trip to the weird place that is the Planet Ak-ron is fraught with difficulty.  I'm impressed that Akron's been able to keep up their usual pace without Treadwell.

The Zips made a lot of threes - but the Bulls kept in it.  I felt like UB's defense was a bit lacking in the second half, until the very end.  Then that final sequence.  Ford hits a three.  Bulls get a defensive stop.  Ford...tries another three and airballs it.  Bulls foul, the Zips miss both, 13 seconds to go and they come up with 2 off-balance three attempts.  It's in a whole other thread - but Bobby you had a timeout, that was the time to use it, set something up right.  There's no points for leaving timeouts on the board.  What the hell.

Ford - I love the work rate, love the put-backs on offense, love making a three in there...but come on, he shouldn't be taking this many threes.  Percentage wise it's just not a good idea.  ESPECIALLY with the game on the line.  He just made one, call it at that and don't get greedy.

Skeete - made a couple nice shots, wasn't afraid to take it to the hoop, and a big steal down the stretch to set up the X Man for a dunk.  But Akron noticed a mis-match in the second half with Skeete under the basket, and took advantage of it a few times.

Bearden - impressed by some clutch shots he made tonight.

This team hung tough in a big game, I don't want to be too disappointed or surprised they came up short (because many good Buffalo teams have in the past) at Akron but darn, the way that was mismanaged (there's no sugar-coating that) at the end really burns.

10
Buffalo Bulls Basketball / Kent beatdown
« on: January 31, 2015, 12:49:39 AM »
When you see the same teams every year in league play, you never ever get tired of wins.  Especially like this.  First of all, credit to the fanbase for showing up for a late one, and especially the students!  Holy crap you guys showed up tonight.  Lots of energy in the building, and when Evans hit that early three, you could feel it getting crazy.  UB forged ahead and never looked back - Kent was out of this game by halfway through the first half.  Kent tried crashing the offensive boards with multiple guys for rebounds in the second half but couldn't get the second-chance points they wanted.  UB is doing a good job most of the time at covering the perimeter - you could tell that was a focus in the second half.  But whenever the Bulls send multiple guys after someone, the other teams usually find the open man on the perimeter.  I digress - there's really nothing to complain about tonight, it's all good.

Ford - what can we say that hasn't been said already.  He was on fire in the first half, and his workrate gets him opportunities to score.  He times crashing the net on rebounds really well.

Moss - this was an interesting one for him.  Most of these opponents so far haven't been able to match up with him, but Kent had some big, physical guys inside to test him.  It felt like Kent did well at this in the first half...and yet Buffalo was up.

The guards - still a bit cold from outside but getting it done.  THe three's will come around again at some point.

Regan and Raheem - some great defense and blocked shots.  Regan takes good position on guys bigger than him.  Raheem is almost forcing teams to avoid going inside on him because it's just not going to get by (Canisius found this out too).

Two end-zones full of students doing different cheers, trying to coordinate this is a wonderful problem to have.  Kent got run out of the building - I half thought they might not even come out for the second half.  I think some of the big turnout tonight was due to having a game on a Friday night, as opposed to a weeknight or a Saturday afternoon.  Prime-time has a buzz to it.

Loved the "Kent read, Kent write, Kent State" cheer and the "Kent read, Kent write, Kent put on snow tires" sign, well done guys.

These wins this week gave me renewed confidence in this team - they can beat good teams at home, let's see if they can raise their game to beating a good, tough MAC team on the road.  That is the difference between a team that may flatter to deceive and one that we can be confident with in March.

11
Buffalo Bulls Basketball / Buffalo vs. Miami
« on: January 17, 2015, 09:12:14 PM »
This wasn't quite a carbon copy of the script from Wednesday, but it was close.  Like many other games this season, the Bulls started slow, and Miami's 6 of 12 from beyond the arc helped them to a 3 point lead at halftime.  You could tell from the start that: (1) Moss was going to have a big day because they didn't have anyone inside who could match up with him; (2) Miami was trying to stretch out all of their possessions, they didn't think they could get into a scoring race with UB; and (3) Miami's personnel meant they had to live or die by the three.

Second half, UB choked off Miami's offense by limiting the open looks the Redhawks got from three.  Once Miami's outside shots stopped dropping, UB built a 10-point lead.  Now at this point, with under 5 to go, common basketball sense says this is time to go at a glacial pace on offense, passing it around, using the whole shot clock, make your free throws.  This team decides to keep the tempo going.  And if you're missing foul shots, or turning it over, and the other team hits a couple three's, you find your lead down to 3 with a minute and a half left.  Something has to change because they got out of this (and others that weren't so close) but a better opponent will steal a game like this.

1. Doesn't it seem like forever since the students and the band were there?  They're desperately needed back.  Good to see the cheerleaders actually out there leading cheers.  Novel concept, huh.
2. As I said last game, Ford and Wigginton are vital components of this team off the bench.  Xavier is working so darn hard out there, and he's seeing results from it.
3. 0-12 from three point range.  But they were killing it inside, so in the end it didn't hurt.
4. Miami has some dangerous guys from outside...when they're wide open.  When UB stopped rushing multiple people to the ball in the first half, thus leaving someone open, Miami didn't get good looks and their shooting dried up.  Sullivan was a perfect example of this.  He wouldn't try a contested shot until the last 2 minutes.
5. Wigginton's block of McCormick under the net in the second half was possibly the biggest BYAH of the season.  It was a block from above, by a guy who wasn't much bigger.
6. Regan played good defense, a couple big blocks, and some good movement on offense.  With bigger scorers on the team this year, he's still playing an important role.
7. Credit to the Bulls for not trying to force too many outside shots when they weren't dropping tonight, just kept going inside because it was working.
8. Can we see some guys follow their shots in?  How many guys shoot it and start running the other direction, if they'd stayed with the play they'd have a chance at the rebound on their missed shot.

12
Buffalo Bulls Football / UB vs Miami
« on: September 27, 2014, 08:06:33 PM »
I want to say that the defense stepped up today (Courtney Lester in particular, he was called upon to make a lot of plays) and yet we still gave up almost 30 points to a bad team.  I have the impression after 5 games that our offense will have to put up 30+ points almost every game if we're going to win.

In the 2nd quarter Miami was only rushing 3 on passing downs, dropping everyone back into coverage.  Then one of those 3 guys would turn the corner on our tackle, flush Licata out, and force a bad throw.  Common sense prevailed and we started hitting them with delayed draws on some of those plays.

Martinez made a lot of catches - we've been anxiously waiting for another guy to step up at WR.  I liked having someone make those Wes Welker-like crossing routes since we seem to only play Willoughby along the sideline.

These games seem to take forever.

And please, please, PLEASE take that mic away from that kid in front of the True Blue section.  It is degrading the game experience.

Miami had their flags that spell out their name - we wondered if they had ones to expand that to 'Miami (Ohio)'.  And who would be the poor kids who have to carry a flag with a parentheses.

We were walking in to have our tickets checked, Danny White was there greeting people, and we went to another line.  I'm old enough to know when it's better to say nothing, because I was going to have nothing nice to say.

13
Buffalo Bulls Basketball / Canisius game Tuesday
« on: November 16, 2012, 12:37:22 PM »
How many people are going up to their high school gym on Tuesday?  We have our tickets already.  I keep hoping that enough UB fans show up one of these times to just take that place over.  That it ends up being like another UB home game.

14
Buffalo Bulls Basketball / UB - Princeton
« on: November 10, 2012, 08:15:15 PM »
First of all - I really expected a dud of a crowd today.  I didn't think enough students would wake up early enough for a noon start, or enough of the public would show up.  Man was I wrong.  The energy from last season carried over, the students were into it, the band was into it, I'm impressed by everyone.  I hope it keeps up going forward from here.  The interlude dance was fun - all around, it was a fun, lively atmosphere and that, plus a competitive team, will keep people coming back.

As for the game - the Bulls looked like a team that's a work in progress at this point.  Princeton worked the ball around well as expected, and if they didn't miss so many three's in the first half we would've been buried at the half instead of down by 1.  Thinking of the big picture, it might have actually been good that McCrea wasn't out there most of the first half - it made the rest of the team need to figure things out, instead of just giving it to Javon every time, he takes on 3 guys, lays it in and gets fouled.  Which is exactly what the plan was in the second half.  Credit to Princeton, they were VERY good on defense.  It seemed like there was no where to go.  What worries me is our lack of size inside, if Downing and Ford don't start giving us serious minutes.  We have Regan playing like a center but he's going to get outsized in there by a lot of teams.  I think he's going to be very good, I just don't know if that's his spot.  I don't agree with bringing Watson off the bench - he's clearly better than Raley-Ross, and we need that outside shooting threat to open up things inside.  The Bulls just looked rusty/nervous for a while, towards the end they looked their old competitive selves.  Unless I think we have a good shot at postseason play, I'm not too concerned about non-conference games except for wanting to see us make progress.  (Except that I want us to roast Niagara, Canisius, and Bona on a spit every year).

15
Buffalo Bulls Basketball / Modie
« on: June 05, 2012, 11:11:22 PM »
http://www.buffalonews.com/sports/columns/jerry-sullivan/article887775.ece

I don't know how many of you remember Modie.  I was in junior high and high school when he played at UB, they had a couple decent years in there in the Mid-Con (and some fiery games against Valpo).  Modie Cox, Kelvin Robinson blocking shots and playing way bigger than 6'6", Myron Banks.  Modie's thing was driving to the basket and hitting some crazy layup.  The game I remember was against BC here, the game plan was Modie would hold the ball at mid-court until there was about 8 seconds left on the shot clock, then he'd drive to the basket and either score or get fouled.  BC was flustered, Jim O'Brien was freaking out, but they snuck out with a win in the end.  Great to see he's doing okay.

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