TOLEDO - Every coach preaches "one game at a time." So far, first-year Toledo coach Matt Campbell has been able to get the message through to his troops. The Rockets (7-1, 4-0 MAC) have played very well against the toughest teams on their schedule, and have managed to play well enough to win against lesser foes.
Most recently, Toledo rose up and knocked off No. 18 Cincinnati, 29-23, at the Glass Bowl on Oct. 20. Toledo scored on defense, special teams and cashed in on five field goals—but did not score an offensive touchdown—to hold off the Bearcats. Cincinnati had the ball in Toledo territory with 12 seconds left but sophomore cornerback Jordan Haden closed the case with an interception that sent the Glass Bowl crowd of 24,124 into a frenzy.
Now the Rockets must put their sights on Buffalo, a team undoubtedly better than its 1-6 record. The Bulls played undefeated Ohio to within a touchdown in Athens, 38-31, and stayed close with Pittsburgh last week before losing, 20-6. Buffalo ranks a surprising fourth in the MAC in total defense (380.3 yards per game) and is even better against the pass (second, allowing just 195.4 yards per game). Buffalo's best running back, Brandon Oliver, has missed the last three games with a leg injury. His replacement, Devin Campbell, rushed for 104 yards vs. Pitt last week.
Back Story on the Buffalo Game
• This will be the ninth meeting between the two schools and the fourth since Buffalo joined the MAC in 1997. Toledo leads the series, 5-3. The Rockets won in 2003 and 2005, while the Bulls triumphed in 2007.
• Toledo received 49 points in the most recent Associated Press poll, leaving them just one spot out of the Top 25. The Rockets also received 30 points in the USA Today coaches polls, good for 31st place.
• The Rockets were last ranked in the Top 25 in the final 2001 AP and USA Today coaches polls. Toledo ended the season 10-2 ranked No. 23 by the AP and No. 22 by the coaches.
• Toledo is now 7-11 all-time vs. teams ranked in the Top 25, including 5-1 in the Glass Bowl. The only Top 25 team to ever win in the Glass Bowl was No. 4 Boise State in 2011.
• Toledo is 7-1 with seven consecutive wins, marking its best start since the 2001 team also went 7-1 to start the year.
• Toledo is 18-2 in its last 20 Mid-American Conference games.
WHEN: Saturday, Oct. 27, 3:30 p.m.
WHERE: UB Stadium (29,013)
• Toledo (7-1, 4-0 MAC)
• Buffalo (1-6, 0-3 MAC)
SERIES RECORD: Toledo leads, 5-3. Buffalo won the last meeting in 2007, a 43-33 win at UB Stadium.
• Matt Campbell, 8-1 (1st full year) at Toledo, same overall. 0-0 vs. Buffalo.
• Jeff Quinn, 6-25 (3rd year) at UB, same overall. 0-0 vs. Toledo.
TV: Time-Warner Cable SportsNet in Buffalo.
ROCKET RADIO NETWORK: Mark Beier (play-by-play), former Rocket Andy Boyd (color) and Jim Heller (sideline) will cover the action. Pregame begins at 1:30 p.m.
WEB-VIDEO: MAC website (www.mac-sports.com).
WEB-AUDIO: Free live audio streaming of the UT Rocket Radio Network broadcast on www.utrockets.com.