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The Final Word on Buffalo

Briggs Orsbon and the Cards exorcised their share of demons Friday night (James McCoy/Buffalo News)

It’s two days after Buffalo, and I am almost a little embarrassed to admit that I’m still giddy over the victory. I understand and comprehend that beating a 2-7 team normally shouldn’t conjure up exuberance and elation, but this particular victory is different than others for so many reasons. First and foremost, it was Ball State’s 4th win of the season, and sets up the opportunity to reach 5-7 with a win over Northern Illinois this weekend. After watching the ever-burning dumpster fire of vocal pissed off fans after some of the losses this season, finishing one game under .500 is nothing to sneeze at. The bottom line is this team is still an extremely young team. Lost on most is that they’ve battled injuries most of the year on the offensive line, and the running back stable has had its share of dings as well. To have all of that go wrong and still be one-game under .500 when the final whistle blows on 2010 isn’t something that I will grumble about at all.

While the long-term excitement may be for the overall season record and the fact that it was a faceless opponent for a W, the short-term elation is clearly because of the face of that “faceless opponent”. This particular game was two seasons in the making, and I would be lying if I said that I didn’t harbor some significant ill will toward Buffalo. It isn’t that they beat us in the 08 MAC Championship game… a loss I can take. It’s been the fall out afterward. A good majority of their fans actually believe that their defense, not the inability of our offense, won that game. They believe that MAC officials didn’t incorrectly rule Quale Lewis didn’t reach the end zone. They actually believe that they were the better team and the undefeated BSU team was a paper tiger who was proven by a better opponent. I’ll admit that they were the better team that particular day but even the most basic of football fans should be able to look at that objectively and conclude that BSU should have rolled the Bulls. What’s past is prologue, but that story has continued to unfold especially this season.

As Ball State has struggled in the last two seasons, BSU fans have had to endure some barbs from UB faithful, perhaps rightfully so. Everyone loves to kick a winner when they’re down, which further proves that UB knows exactly where it ranks in the MAC hierarchy. We’ve had to endure snickers and guffaws after 2-10 in 2009. We’ve had snide remarks made because we lost to two FCS teams in the last two seasons. We’ve been told that BSU sucks, the football program is a joke, Coach Parrish couldn’t coach a two car funeral, etc. etc. ad nauseum. Well, Buffalo fans, if BSU’s suckitude is to the level of your evaluation, then what does that say about a team who got their candyasses whooped from pillar to post on Friday night? Offensive domination? Check. Defensive domination? Check. Sure, your special teams were actually not bad. A long field goal gave you an early lead and you blocked a punt. Bully for all of you. Of course, those three points were the only points you’d score for the rest of the night, and the blocked punt was quickly pissed away after an interception, but at least you got a few table scraps before we put you out for the night. Be thankful.

The bottom line is that at least for the very foreseeable future, we have silenced the cynicism and snarkiness of our MAC brethren of the northeast. Sure, the barbs may come and the comments may be present, but the fact remains that on the field the Cardinals handled their business for 60 minutes. It was a complete and thorough domination that leaves little doubt, little room for interpretation, and little ability for any true football fan to be able to question who the better team was. It feels good. Damn good.

And so, the final word on Buffalo is:

  • Retribution: n.
    1. Something justly deserved; recompense.
    2. Something given or demanded in repayment, especially punishment.
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