UALBANY Football Week 11 Preview


by Ryan McCarthy, BBM Staff Writer 

UAlbany’s 2018 season comes to a close on Saturday afternoon as the Great Danes will face intrastate rival Stony Brook in the Empire Clash at Bob Ford Field. For the #10/#13 ranked Seawolves, a playoff bid is on the line while the Great Danes have more than pride on the line: there is the opportunity to break a six-game losing streak and reclaim the Golden Apple Trophy.

The Golden Apple Trophy (Photo Credit: UAlbanySports.com)
How do these teams match up?

UAlbany Offense vs. Stony Brook Defense: The Great Danes’ offense has had its upward and downward swings over the course of the season. QB Jeff Undercuffler will make his third consecutive start and hopes to bring a spark to a Great Danes offense plagued by lack of discipline and consistency. RBs Elijah Ibitokun-Hanks and Karl Mofor each had good games against New Hampshire, but their gains were negated by the surrender of seven sacks. If the run game gets established early, Undercuffler can find targets Donovan McDonald, Dev Holmes, and Jerrah Reeves for big gains. In order to do that, though, UAlbany will have to do so against an experienced Stony Brook defense. Keep an eye on two linebackers: Shayne Lawless and Noah McGinty are tied for the team lead with 78 tackles each while Lawless has 11.5 tackles for loss. DL Sam Kamara leads the defense with 6.5 sacks and will be licking his chops against an offensive line tied for the most sacks surrendered in the CAA. DBs CeQuan Jefferson and Damarcus Miller each have two interceptions. One thing to note is that the Seawolves are second in the CAA in scoring defense, surrendering only 19 points per game and are the top-ranked red zone defense in the conference.

UAlbany Defense vs. Stony Brook Offense: The Great Danes held New Hampshire in check for two quarters, but as they have been prone to do this season, they gave up a long play with Carlos Washington’s 93-yard touchdown run. They’ll face an experienced Seawolves’ offense that has averaged 208 yards rushing per game in 2018 and features two premier running backs. Donald Liotine leads the CAA in rushing with 1,025 yards while his teammate Jordan Gowins is second with 850 yards to go with seven touchdowns. QB Joe Carbone has benefited from a strong rushing attack with stout numbers of his own: 1,550 yards and 13 passing touchdowns. The primary target has been WR Julius Wingate, who has 345 yards and four touchdowns. The front seven of the Great Danes defense will need to be dialed in and stop the run early so they can force Carbone to make mistakes.

Outlook: This is a rivalry game at home for the Great Danes and for the most part, they have been a tough team to play at home this season. If Stony Brook gets off to a great start, the Golden Apple Trophy and an FCS playoff spot could be theirs. But if the Great Danes can catch the Seawolves off guard, an upset could be in the works.

Game Time: 3:30pm.

Where to Watch: Fox Sports GO/Fox College Sports, UAlbanySports.com (game tickets are also available).

Where to Listen: 104.5-FM ESPN Radio WTMM (UA Feed), 103.9-FM LI News Radio WRCN (SB Feed).

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