Patterson matches record as No. 24 Buffalo beats Akron 56-7

Sports

Buffalo running back Jaret Patterson (26) carries the ball during the first half of an NCAA college football game against Akron in Amherst, N.Y., Saturday, Dec. 12, 2020. (AP Photo/Jeffrey T. Barnes)

AMHERST, N.Y. (AP) — Jaret Patterson ran for 105 yards and matched a major-college football record by reaching 1,000 yards for the season in five games as No. 24 Buffalo routed Akron 56-7 on Saturday as a tune-up for the Mid-American Conference championship.

Patterson scored two touchdowns before halftime, bringing his season totals to 1,025 yards and 18 rushing TDs for the Bulls (5-0). He is the 12th player in FBS history to surpass 1,000 yards in as many games.

Kevin Marks Jr. led the Bulls with a career-high 175 yards and two touchdowns. Marks went over 100 yards and scored twice in the first half as Buffalo (5-0) built a 35-0 lead against Akron (1-5).

The Bulls scored on defense for the fourth time this season when Tyrone Hill blocked a field goal and returned it 63 yards for a touchdown in the first quarter.

Buffalo finished with 428 yards rushing.

Buffalo’s passing attack found the end zone for the first time in three games when Kyle Vantrease connected with Trevor Wilson for a 52-yard touchdown early in the third quarter. The Bulls ran for 21 straight touchdowns prior to that.

Jonzell Norrils scored on an 11-yard run in the fourth quarter for Akron. Buffalo had shutout Akron for nine straight quarters going back to 2018.

THE TAKEAWAY

Akron: The Zips broke their 21-game losing streak last week, but still have a long way to go.

Buffalo: The Bulls are 5-0 for the first time since 1980 when Buffalo was a Division III program. Having won the MAC East division, the Bulls move on to the conference championship game for the second time in three years and the third time in school history.

POLL IMPLICATIONS

Buffalo entered the AP Top 25 for the first time last week and could merit consideration for a higher ranking after another blowout victory on national television. The Bulls beat each five of their conference opponents by at least 19 points and lead the country in scoring (51.8 points per game).

UP NEXT

Akron’s season is over. The Zips have lost 12 consecutive road games.

Buffalo: The Bulls meet Ball State for the MAC championship on Friday at Ford Field in Detroit. It will be a rematch of the 2008 title game that Buffalo won for its lone conference championship.

Copyright 2021 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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