Kayon Whitaker of the University of Maine (9) tries to get around Towson University lineman Demarcus Gilmore during their Sept. 14 game in Orono. The Black Bears play at UAlbany on Saturday. Credit: Peter Buehner | UMaine Athletics

The University of Maine football team is treating each of its last four regular-season games as playoff games.

“It’s championship [game] week,” said Black Bears head coach Nick Charlton whose Black Bears have to win all four, beginning with Saturday afternoon’s 3:30 p.m. Colonial Athletic Association game at Albany, and get some help to earn a second straight Football Championship Subdivision playoff berth.

UMaine Black Bears (3-5) at UAlbany Great Danes (5-3), 3:30 p.m. Saturday, Casey Stadium, Albany, New York: The Black Bears (1-3 CAA) will have their hands full against a rested Albany team (3-1 CAA) that had last weekend off.

“If we had played last Saturday, we would have had anywhere from five to eight starters out [due to injury]. We will be getting most of them back,” UAlbany head coach Greg Gattuso said.

Winning streaks are on the line as the Great Danes are 4-0 at home this season while the Black Bears are gunning for their fifth consecutive overall victory against UAlbany and the program’s fifth straight in Albany.

UAlbany also is celebrating the 150th anniversary of college football and the 50th of its football program.

One of the interesting matchups pits UAlbany quarterback Jeff Undercuffler against a UMaine pass defense that leads the CAA, allowing only 183.5 yards per game and nine touchdowns.

Undercuffler has completed 155 of 263 passes for 2,021 yards and 24 touchdowns while being intercepted just six times. He is one shy of the school’s single-season TD record.

But he is a drop-back passer and UMaine has seen a steady dose of dual-threat QBs. Four of the eight quarterbacks UMaine have faced have either led their team in rushing or were the No. 2 ground-gainer against the Black Bears.

“[Undercuffler] likes to stay back and throw, so it will be fun for us to try to get after him,” UMaine senior defensive end and captain Kayon Whitaker said.

His two primary targets have been Juwan Green (51 catches, 793 yds, school-record 10 TDs) and Jerah Reeves (48-581-4).

The game features four of the league’s top eight ypg receiving leaders in Green (99.1, 2nd), UMaine’s Earnest Edwards (98.9, 3rd) and Jaquan Blair (84.2, 6th) and UAlbany’s Reeves (72.8, 8th).

The Great Danes also have an impressive running back tandem of Karl Mofor (155 rushes, 756 yards), the CAA’s No. 2 rusher, and Alex James (48-406).

UMaine’s rushing defense ranks 11th among 12 CAA teams, allowing 177.6 yards per game.

The Black Bears have received a huge lift from freshman quarterback Joe Fagnano, filling in for the injured Chris Ferguson (foot). In his two starts, he has completed 67.8 percent of his passes (40-for-59) for 694 yards and seven touchdowns. He has been intercepted only once and he has also rushed for 66 yards on 29 carries.

Four UMaine receivers have caught at least 27 passes.

UMaine’s resurgent running game, led by Joe Fitzpatrick (80 att., 386 yds.), has averaged 171 yards over the last three games after managing just 98.2 ypg through the first five.

UMaine’s defense has been led by linebackers Taji Lowe (62 tackles) and Adrian Otero (50), along with safety Josh Huffman (44) and Whitaker (38, 9.5 tackles for loss, 3.5 sacks).

The Great Dane defense features linebackers Levin Metheny (70 tackles) and Danny Damico (59), safety A.J. Mistler (67) and end Eli Mencer (29 tackles, 14.5 tackles for loss, 8.5 sacks).