The UMaine football team hosts Stony Brook on Saturday in a game that could define the season for the Black Bears. At 2-4, coming off a dispiriting home loss to Yale, Maine still finds itself in the hunt for the Colonial Athletic Association title. That’s because three of its four losses were in non-conference games.

Maine’s remaining schedule isn’t particularly daunting – its two road games are at Villanova and New Hampshire teams that have suffered injuries at quarterback and aren’t nearly as strong as projected to be. But none of the games (with the probable exception of a home meeting with Elon) should be penciled in as wins for the Black Bears, either. So here’s what I’ll be focusing my attention on Saturday:

1. The Maine quarterbacks, obviously. Coach Jack Cosgrove has said that he’ll play both Dan Collins and Drew Belcher again Saturday, after inexplicably failing to get any reps for Belcher in that Yale loss. The inability to move the offense doesn’t fall entirely on Collins, certainly, but by the fourth quarter it had become pretty evident that it wasn’t his day. So why didn’t Cosgrove turn to Belcher in the hope of finding some kind of spark? He said afterward that he regretted not doing so. When I spoke with him Tuesday, he wouldn’t even commit to Collins being the starter against Stony Brook, but I suspect that he will be. How effective he is from the outset, and how many snaps Belcher gets, are two things to keep an eye on, Saturday and going forward. Maine won’t win many games without at least one of the quarterbacks making a dramatic leap in execution. Oh, and Stony Brook has a really good defense. This is what is known as a challenge, and an opportunity. For someone.

2. Will anyone be available to try to catch the football? Tight end Jeremy Salmon sat out the Yale game with a concussion and may not be back. Max Andrews won’t be eligible to return till Nov. 1 after offseason shoulder surgery. That left Jason Simonovich to man the tight end position, and he has a grand total of two catches the past two weeks. At wide receiver, it is hoped that Micah Wright can continue to play through a rib injury and the plan was to lighten his workload during practice this week. He’s been fantastic. Junior Jordan Dunn is coming on lately as well, despite a couple of drops last week. Senior John Hardy of Portland had a couple of nice catches against Yale on passes that were thrown behind him. He also couldn’t hang on to a pass in the end zone that got knocked out of his grip by a defensive back. Marquise Adams returned from injury and got his first playing time of the year, but didn’t exactly look ready. And why was Adams playing? Because Justin Flores (hamstring) and Matt Cosgrove (knee) were out of commission. Then Jaleel Reed and Jared Osumah went down with injuries during the game. So the receiver position is a mess. Dunn and Hardy should be good to go, and they bring experience. If Wright can play as expected, even if not fully healthy, he will be a big plus. Beyond that? It could be a mix-and-match collection of receiving options for Collins and Belcher. And that probably won’t help matters.

3. Will Kevin Bourgoin get a little more inventive with his play-calling? The offensive coordinator did open things up a bit in the 39-7 win at Albany two weeks ago, even getting the ball to Wright on an end-around play that went for long yardage. The Black Bears are never going to be run-and-gun, but it may time to be more than just bread-and-butter. If the offense finds itself in a rut again, it will be interesting to see if the coaches try to shake things up. Or at least try to keep the fans awake.

4. Will Randy Samuels continue to look like a star? I wrote about the senior linebacker for Wednesday’s paper because he has been increasingly impressive this season. His 15-tackle game against Yale was the best by a Black Bear linebacker in years, Cosgrove told me Tuesday. And that was after looking at the film. It looked pretty good in live action as well. Samuels continually chased down ball carriers from his weakside spot, despite being on the field for 82 snaps. Stony Brook is your classic run-first offense. Samuels will get his chances to force the Seawolves into second and third options. It should be fun to watch.

5. Finally, and this one is harder to define, but will Maine be up to the physical challenge that Stony Brook poses? There’s nothing fancy about what the Seawolves try to do – pound you into submission. For a Black Bear team that was lacking in the toughness factor for much of last Saturday, this becomes a chance to redeem itself – or to curl up and call it a season. I think how Maine responds after a game that it let get away will tell you all you need to know about the 2015 version of this squad. With a loss, especially one in which the Black Bears back down, its time to start thinking about next year. A stirring performance and a victory? I don’t want to sound crazy here, but it’s not inconceivable for this team to win out and get into the playoffs.