MUNCIE, Ind. (AP) — Drew Plitt threw a touchdown pass and ran for a score — in the first quarter — and Ball State became bowl eligible with a 20-3 victory over Buffalo on Tuesday night.
It’s just the third time in program history that the Cardinals (6-6, 4-4 Mid-American Conference) have qualified for a bowl game in back-to-back seasons. Ball State and Buffalo met for the MAC championship last season — a game the Cardinals won 38-28.
Ball State set the tone early when Malcolm Lee picked off Matt Myers on the Bulls’ first series, giving the Cardinals the ball on Buffalo’s 42-yard line. Eleven plays later Plitt scored on a 1-yard run for a 7-0 lead. Buffalo’s next possession also ended in disaster when Hassan Littles blocked a punt by Jackson Baltar and Brandon Berger recovered, giving Ball State a first-and-goal at the 6. Plitt connected with Jayshon Jackson for a 7-yard score on third down and the Cardinals never looked back.
Plitt completed 19 of 31 passes for 176 yards. Jackson finished with nine catches for 103 yards.