Top Highlights of Buffalo RB Jaret Patterson's Historic Day vs. Kent State

Mike Chiari@mikechiariFeatured ColumnistNovember 28, 2020

FILE - In this Sept. 7, 2019, file photo, Buffalo running back Jaret Patterson (26) carries the ball during an NCAA college football game against Penn State in State College, Pa. Patterson's 31 career rushing touchdowns are just four short of breaking the school record held by former NFLer James Starks. What's equally impressive, is how sophomore running back has combined for 490 yards and 11 touchdowns (one receiving) in his past two games alone. (AP Photo/Steve Luciano, File)
Steve Luciano/Associated Press

University at Buffalo junior running back Jaret Patterson turned in one of the greatest rushing performances in college football history Saturday, running for 409 yards and eight touchdowns in a 70-41 win over the Kent State Golden Flashes.

Patterson set the single-game Mid-American Conference and Buffalo records for rushing yards and rushing touchdowns. He also tied Illinois running back Howard Griffith for the single-game FBS rushing touchdown record and finished with the second-most rushing yards by an FBS player in a single game.

He surpassed former Wisconsin and current Denver Broncos running back Melvin Gordon for second place on the single-game rushing yardage list and fell just 18 yards short of matching former Oklahoma and current Cincinnati Bengals running back Samaje Perine's record of 427 yards.

Additionally, Patterson became only the second player in FBS history to rush for 300 or more yards in consecutive games, joining Ricky Williams, who accomplished the feat in 1996 for Texas.

Patterson, who entered the game with 511 yards and eight touchdowns in just three contests for the now-4-0 Bulls, padded his stats in a big way against 3-1 Kent State.

The Glendale, Maryland, native accounted for each of Buffalo's five first-half touchdowns, as he scored on runs of three, 31, 42, 49 and one yards, and also rushed for 267 yards on 18 carries in the first half:

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By virtue of Patterson's dominance, UB entered the locker room with a 35-24 lead in a game that was huge in deciding which team represents the East division in the MAC title game.

With Patterson leading the way, Buffalo rushed for 293 yards in the first half and racked up 389 yards of offense.

Patterson could have stopped there, but he was far from done, as he rushed for 142 more yards and three more touchdowns in the second half.

The record-setting running back's second-half touchdowns came from seven, 11 and 58 yards out:

Patterson had a chance to break the FBS single-game rushing yardage and touchdown records on UB's final drive, but head coach Lance Leipold pulled him in favor of backup Kevin Marks, who rushed for 97 yards and two scores on the day.

Overall, UB rushed for 515 yards as a team and gained 663 total yards. It also took firm control of the MAC East and is currently in line to play for the MAC title.

While Patterson will not receive Heisman Trophy consideration since he plays in the MAC and the Bulls will play no more than seven games, it can be argued there is no better running back in college football.

Patterson will almost certainly shatter most career UB rushing records if he returns in 2021 for his senior season, though he could be one of the top backs off the board in the 2021 NFL draft.

Regardless of what the future holds for Patterson, Buffalo's success in the 2020 campaign rests solely with his legs.