COLLEGE FOOTBALL

End Zone: BGSU Falcons

Has Buffalo given away home-field advantage?

11/28/2013
BY JOHN WAGNER
BLADE SPORTS WRITER

Before this season began, the Buffalo athletic department made a decision that may backfire.

UB decided that it would move its Black Friday contest against the Falcons from its on-campus home to Ralph Wilson Stadium for the "Clash at the Ralph." The idea was to take a game played with no students on campus and try to generate a crowd, knowing that these day-after-Thanksgiving contests barely generate an attendance ripple.

It is similar to what BG did last season when it moved its contest against the Bulls to Columbus Crew Stadium. But there is a difference: The Clash at the Ralph isn't that far away from the Bulls' home, while the Columbus contest brought a BG home game to a new audience.

There's one other difference: This year's game is for the MAC's East Division title. Have the Bulls given away their home-field advantage in a championship game?

Buffalo administrators say 24,000 tickets have been sold, but even if every one of those tickets results in a butt in a seat, the crowd will still rattle around the 70,000-seat stadium.

It may be an advantage for the Falcons in a contest that may turn on the smallest of advantages.

Contact John Wagner at: jwagner@theblade.com, 419-724-6481 or on Twitter @jwagnerblade.