BUFFALO, NY – The University at Buffalo football team held its annual Blue and White Scrimmage on Friday night at UB Stadium. While the Bulls showed positives on both sides of the ball, it was the defense that provided many of the highlights.
The team played a situational scrimmage between the offense and defense with the ball spotted in various downs and distances. No score was kept and only the play clock was utilized.
The defense looked very strong as it produced seven interceptions. Jeremiah Dadeboe had two picks to lead the way. Also recording interceptions were Cameron Lewis, Craig Hardgers, Kadofi Wright, Ryan Williamson and Jordan Collier who returned his 55 yards for a touchdown to end the scrimmage.
Tyree Jackson started at quarterback and went 11-of-17 for 133 yards, two touchdowns and two interceptions. Jackson's first touchdown pass was a perfectly timed back-shoulder throw to Chris Spell at the front pylon for a 13-yard touchdown. He later completed a beautiful wheel route to Tyler Mabry for a 23-yard score. Jackson added 28 yards on the six carries, including a 3-yard TD run.
Junior quarterback Drew Anderson capped his solid spring with a good outing, finishing 7-for-11 for 81 yards a touchdown and two interceptions. Anderson's first pass of the game was a 47-yard completion to Spell, followed by a 4-yard touchdown to redshirt-freshman tight end Zac Lefebvre.
Kameron Pickett led UB running backs with eight carries for 48 yards, including a 6-yard touchdown run. The redshirt-freshman had a game-long run of 23 yards.
The tight end position looks to be in capable hands as both Lefebvre and Mabry had good games. Lefebvre led all players with five catches for 19 yards and a touchdown. Mabry had two grabs for 31 yards and a score.
Defensively, senior linebacker Jarrett Franklin had a team-high five tackles. However, it was the youngsters that shined in this game. Sophomore Duke Hwang, who redshirted last season, had three tackles for loss, including two sacks. Wright, a redshirt-freshman linebacker, had four tackles, a tackle for loss and an interception. Sophomore cornerback Dadeboe had two tackles and a pass breakup to go along with his two interceptions.
Freshman defensive lineman Malcolm Koonce, who joined the team in January, had three tackles and a sack. Sophomore linebacker Justin Mulbah also had three tackles and a sack.
Kicker Adam Mitcheson made good on his only field goal attempt – a 37-yarder.
"There were good things on both sides of the ball," head coach Lance Leipold said. "We're moving in the right direction. One concern we had entering spring was the consistency of our secondary and to see them step up and make those plays was encouraging. I thought we played the run better tonight than we had in previous scrimmages. I like where our offense is heading."
The 2017 season kicks off on August 31 at Minnesota.