AMHERST, N.Y. (WIVB) — The Blue and White battle lines have been drawn at UB Stadium. Here are four items of interest going into University at Buffalo’s spring football game kicking off at 1:30 p.m. Sunday.

Inviting competition

UB coach Maurice Linguist raised the stakes last spring, splitting the roster into Blue and White teams competing for a fancy steak dinner, while the losers were fed low-grade hot dogs.

For his second spring game, Linguist sought to enhance the competitive spirit by having his staff not only draft Bulls players, but also assign rooting interests for supporters and spectators.

Blue and White rosters (see below) now include: students, faculty, Bills, Sabres, Bandits, Bisons players and coaches, local schools, elected officials, police, fire and emergency service providers, businesses and corporate partners, News 4 Buffalo reporters and anchors among other media members, entire suburbs of Western New York, even food items like chicken wing dipping sauces in opposition.

“How can we engage as many people as humanly possible and let them be a part of it?” was how Linguist described the spring game marketing strategy. “I’ve tried to cast a wide net. Reach out to a lot of people to open the doors.”

Special invitations were extended to former UB players in the NFL, including All-Pro Khalil Mack, whom Linguist expects to be in attendance.

Gates open at noon for fan festival activities, and there will be a postgame meet and greet with the Bulls. Admission is free.

What’s really at stake

Playing time in the coming season.

UB retained the core of its team that finished 7-6 and won the Camellia Bowl this past season. That includes quarterback Cole Snyder (Southwestern), three productive running backs in Ron Cook, Mike Washington and Al-Jay Henderson, starting linemen Gabe Wallace, Tyler Doty (St. Joe’s) and Isaiah Wright, defensive linemen Daymond Williams, Jaylon Bass, C.J. Bazile and Max Michel, All-MAC linebacker Shaun Dolac (West Seneca East) and All-American safety Marcus Fuqua.

Still, there are several open position battles, notably at wide receiver, tight end, backup quarterback and interior offensive line. Spring game performance will factor into depth chart decisions when summer camp opens, Linguist said.

“Any chance you get on the football field to make it into a game-like setting and see guys perform is a piece of the performance process of how you are evaluating your guys,” Linguist said.

“We grade everything.”

About those hot dogs

Linguist wants the losers to leave with a bad taste in their mouths.

“I am going to find the hot dog with the biggest paragraph of ingredients,” said Linguist, who wore a Bloodsport movie t-shirt at Thursday’s practice. “We’re not going to grill them or boil them. We’re going to put them in the microwave and that’s what you are going to get.”

While community members won’t enjoy the steak dinners if their assigned team wins, Linguist said hot dogs will be available for anyone in the stands representing the losing team.


New defensive coordinator Robert White (Blue) and fellow first-year offensive coordinator DJ Mangas (White) will coach the opposing teams. Newly-hired men’s basketball coach George Halcovage (Blue) and MAC champion women’s soccer coach Shawn Burke (White) are the honorary coaches.

Take a look at the split roster of players, and check out which of the AllBuffalo Teams fans can choose to represent.


Jonah Bronstein joined the News 4 roster in 2022 as a digital sports reporter. Read more of his work here.