D.A.’s Knee-Jerk Reaction: Syracuse Crushes UConn & Coach P at Dome

Here’s what the big win over the Huskies means for SU’s bowl eligibility.

Kevin Rivoli/AP Photo

The Orange rolled to a 40-10 victory on Friday night, putting SU at 3-4, 2-1 in the Big East. Both units looked dominating over the Huskies. Here’s my instant analysis:

  • This was huge from a historical stand point. Doc Gross continues to tell anyone who will listen how much better off this program is then it used to be. Whether he’s right is all a matter of when you draw the line. Is it a stronger program than where Groobers left it? Of course. Robinson – no matter how many times people say what a nice guy he was – left the Orange in a garbage can, on fire. It’s clearly better now. But is it better than when Coach P was fired? That’s debatable. But beating Pasquoloni handily, and continuing UConn’s awful start, helps build the argument that P’s time has come and gone.
  • From a bowl perspective, this was a vital win. At 2-4, needing to reach 6 wins, the Orange had to find 4 wins in 6 games down the stretch to be eligible for the postseason. While a trip to struggling Mizzou no longer looks impossible, it’s certainly no slam dunk for the Orange. If you assume a loss in Columbia, then SU had to go 4-1 in the Big East entering the night. Now make it 3-1. Losing to a bad Huskies team at home would’ve meant running the table in conference the rest of the way. Never going to happen. Bowl pace is still in play. The Orange must go a reasonable 3-2 the rest of the way.
  • How about that offense? There were huge chunks of yardage to be had all night, and the much maligned Nathaniel Hackett deserves some praise. His play-calling has been crucified recently (especially after some awful decisions last week in the red zone). Friday night he was excellent, mixing run and pass effectively.
  • Look at Jerome Smith, running like a young Larry Csonka. He averaged 7.0 yards per carry for 133 yards on the night, and found that extra burst to get by the initial line of defense. Everyone got into the act, as the Orange gained a ridiculous 251 yards on the ground. Smith ran like a locomotive.
  • Endangered species watch: Ashton Broyld. AB carried 11 times for 58 yards. Hey Hackett, what the hell were you doing with this guy the last two weeks? The mystery continues. Don’t tell us that he “didn’t fit into the game plan.” Every time he touches the ball there’s a potential for a big play. Why did they bury him the last two games?
  • Ryan Nassib had a beautiful game, not having to do too much. He found Lemon and Wales numerous times in space, and never forced the ball into bad spots. That’s the passing attack we need to see more of. Forget trying to make Nassib Matt Barkley, thank you very much.
  • The Fizz created the category KYP’s last week (Kill Yourself Plays). Look at the totals tonight. While the Orange had two more penalties than UConn (8-to-6), the Orange committed two fewer turnovers (2-to-0). When you out gain the opponent by 200 yards, and have a wash in KYP’s, you’ll win that game handily.
  • Should we be worried that BOTH Ben Lewis and Devante McFarlane are done for the season with surgeries for upper body injuries? Neither has played in any games so they’ll be redshirted, no problem. But how does two young players both sustain season-ending upper body injuries WITHOUT getting onto the field? Was it conditioning? Was this McFarlane’s shoulder injury from months ago? I like both these players, so I’m a little discouraged that there’s a rash of upper body surgeries that have to happen within their first few months in the program.

Posted: D.A.

38 Comments on this Post

  1. Russell MacEachern

    Ron,great gameplan and the D was their usual top 25 class selves!!Lets see were Cuse17 and “tagteam” troll are today and if they can handle winning?They feel most comfortable in calling for coaches heads after losses!!…btw Ron,I did’nt see a lot of fan’s in the seats??I think if we can continue to play like last night every game left is in play!!Congrats to the loyal fans who showed at the Dome in the rain and never lost faith!!Im sure Smittys section were there!!

  2. Section 129 Smitty

    Wow did they play well. Very happy SU fan today. The Section 129 crew had a blast at the game last night. Defense is getting better each game and Jerome Smith is getting better and better each game. About time Marrone put someone back on Punt Returns with some speed and Desir’s first punt return set us up for a score. These are the type of plays that set the tone for the game. Thought Kobena was going to play and once he rerurns I’m sure he will handle the kickoff returns. It was funny before the game when we were tailgating I told everyone I had a feeling this was the game the team was going to finally put it all together and maybe win one for Marrone as he has looked frustrated. Boy did they. Lets hope this carries over to next week against South Florida and we hit the .500 mark. The SU nation has suffered for awhile football wise, wouldnt it be nice to beat South Florida, which we should and then beat Cinn. That would mean a big time game in the Dome vs. Louisville on 11/10. When was the last time we had such a big game at the dome. I think the football gods owe us one. GO SU

  3. Great game all. Did we have any recruits in the house last night? Were they impressed?

  4. @Russell,Section 129 Smitty;the announced attendance was a little over 36,000 people. That has to be paid attendance because I know there wasn’t that many in the house. I know my family and I were and that’s all that matters to me.

    Smitty,that was fun to watch,the defense looked superb and I look for it to continue it’s way against USF and Cincinnati. I too think that one of the biggest changes made with the team was putting Richie Desir in on punt returns. Every time he caught the ball he made an all out effort to return the ball to the end zone and didn’t go sideways during the game. Very refreshing.
    Adonis-Ameen Moore;what can you say about this young man other than he’s touched the ball 3 times and scored 3 touchdowns. Jerome Smith ran for 133 yards on 18 carries. Both players performances were just outstanding. AWESOME BABY JUST AWESOME!!!!

    @Carlton;FSU playing Miami today. is that going to be a game? FSU should dominate them in every aspect of the game. Enjoy.

    Getting ready for football and later playing some quarter ante poker out in the Syracuse Room later this evening. Enjoy you Saturday everone,lots of football and fun today.

  5. Great game…160 rec yds by a reciever, 130 yrd rusher, afew turnovers, some fieldgoals, and redzone scoring. Very complete effort! Now there’s another chance to bat .500? Every game is huge & the mizzou game is a must win to go bowling!

    HCJB called Pitino, “full of sh*t” , now thats funny! Does this give UofL football extra insentive? Thats bulletin board material…JB defending ACC move is just plain cool….

  6. @Dip, Not so much defending the ACC move but slick rick seems to forget when the big 12 came calling and picked WVU over UofL Tom Jurich got the Kentucky senator Mitch McConnell involved in trying to block the WVU move to the big 12. Louisville wanted out so bad they got the government involved when they got left out! So yes Rick is full of shit and sounds like a jackass. Here is a link if you would like to read about it.

  7. IMO it is possible for this team to get the 6 wins. Going to Bowl games is important for a number of reasons, not the least of which is more practice time. 3 & 4 (2-1)means S Florida and Sincinatti put us one away from the magic 6. Louisville at home is nice, but if not then Temple should be a W

  8. @bigdip;if you remember last summer when Syracuse announced it’s departure from the Big East,Rick Pitino had a lot to say about Jim Boehiem and Syracuse leaving the conference. Fast forward to the BE media day where he continued to denigrate Jim Boehiem and Syracuse. You had to expect a response from Coach Boehiem and he gave it.

    Carlton was right in his assessment,Louisville would have jumped leagues in a heart beat,because they know the BE has become a no name nothing league. Syracuse and Pittsburgh will be sorely missed,more than anyone realizes.

  9. VA Tech doesn’t look to good right now losing to Clemson 24-10. Will there be some upsets with Rutgers and Ohio State both losing their games today? This is thew time of year where things start to get interesting.

    If Temple goes on to defeat Rutgers today then the game against Temple at the end of the year is going to be interesting.

  10. Sorry everyone,I just saw a score up date for the Temple game and it looks like Rutgers is starting to pull away from them.

  11. @Ron I’m surprised that VT is only losing to Clemson 24-10 after what Pitt did to them.

    Anybody else start watching that game last night into the 1st quarter and think “oh boy, this is going to be a long night…”? Between the officiating and the bad play calling in the 1st, there was no reason to suspect this would be such a dominating game, other than the D was on. Then they figured it out on offense and started clicking. Lots of fun to watch Smith have that kind of performance, especially since we shut down their run game.

  12. Russell MacEachern

    Ron,I heard on BEGOW postgame show RU was still sleeping in 1st half from rooting for SU till late last night….not to worry they woke up at the 2nd half and scored 35 straight pts w/a couple big STs plays!!They seem to own 3rd Qtr 96-13 in first 7 games this yr!!HaHa.. @Dipper,think Giants game from last week will carry over?”GoCuse” “GoGiants”@Ron,I think we can maybe run the table w/a little good fortune!!Enjoy the games,u too Carlton!!

  13. Russell MacEachern

    @Derek,I think Clemson is another overrated ACC team but FSU is the goods!I hope our fans share my sense of humor HaHa..certainly VT was a paper tiger!!

  14. @Russell MacEachern;I know that my earlier prediction of a 9-3 season was blown out of water last week against Rutgers and really didn’t have much hope for Syracuse the rest of the year.
    With that being said I think Syracuse will win against USF,Temple,and Missouri and throw in a win against either Louisville or Cincinnati to finish at 7-5. With a win in the Pinstripe Bowl going 8-5 for the year.

    There’s been a lot of talk about replacing Marrone as coach. I say it takes 5 years to change a losing program into a winning one. Let’s give him another year to see what happens. Look for results of winning in the 6th year before any decision is made to replace him or not. PATIENCE PEOPLE PATIENCE.

  15. Uh, just watched that USF vs. Louisville game… wouldn’t sleep on USF. If it wasn’t for some stupid calls, both by officials and play calls, USF would’ve won. Good fight.

  16. Russell MacEachern

    Derek,no gimme’s in a BE season,maybe no Alabama’s but every team is top 50/55!No weak sisters in the beast!!Anyone can win on a given Saturday!

  17. Russell MacEachern

    Ron,ur absolutely right!!We can win out and make a good bowl w/a break here and there and could surprise the ACC!!BE is MUCH STRONGER than were given credit for!!

  18. Russell MacEachern

    Ron,if u’ll remember 7-5 and a bowl win was my origanal prediction!!I’ll stand by it!!

  19. Russell MacEachern

    The “U”figured out a way to put fans in the seats….sell them to a team with a real,live fanbase FSU who fill 90% of the 40k+ crowd!!I’ve seen 3 U games (home)this yr and most of the seats were empty this yr!!Economy?Im not sure!!But UF or FSU never seem to be affected!!

  20. @Russell MacEachern;I’m overly optimistic each year when I predict on how the Syracuse season is going to be. When the schedule comes out in the papers I put something together on the computer,make it look nice and hang it on the wall in my own little “man cave” Syracuse room. The year we went 1-11 my prediction for that season was 11-1 and my co-workers didn’t let me forget who incorrect I was. This year mu original prediction was 11-1. I was off just a tad,you know.
    Anyway it looks like your prediction Russell might come true. A 7-5 overall record looks pretty promising right now.

    Louisville pulls a tough win out against USF,Cincinnati loses to Toledo,and Rutgers pulls away from Temple in the second half of their ballgame. Saturday showed me that the league is wide open,and just remember Louisville,Cincinnati and Rutgers all have to play each other yet.

    I apologize for being so late,we just finished playing cards and now I’m going to get some shut eye. Tomorrows another long day.

    @Carlton;I see FSU finally pulled away from the “U”. Good game.

  21. We sent a ton of fans down for the game. Wasn’t a work of art. Got the W! All that matters in the end. Anyone catch the drunken Miami fan that ran on the field during a 3rd down play? Was so funny! Anyways ND escaped today to! Might be in trouble up in Norman next Saturday though. We will see. Already can’t wait for it to be Saturday again!

  22. Russell MacEachern

    Ron,I enjoyed ur post about ur yearly predictions!!Most of us fans do that but I used to gamble for a living in my youth College and Pro football and the Horses “flats” and Im fairly professional about predictions now!I knew ur preseason hopes were unlikely but who knows??Anythings possible!I hope my preseason prediction is close and w/a bowl win 8/5 sounds possible!Most fans would have been happy to take my prediction in preseason!@Carlton,yea I seen that bozo run on the field near the end of the play..HaHa..almost screwed up the whole play and ref’s almost called for a do-over but did’nt HaHa..big fantasy football day today..good luck Carlton,Im going against #1 in the league this week!I like when u get to enjoy ur football Saturdays!!

  23. Russell MacEachern

    Carlton,no one doubts FSUs ability to fill a stadium but what went wrong w/the popularity of the “U”?I think if ND makes a NC run u’all should meet the BE in the Orange bowl!!

  24. Section 129 Smitty

    Well Cinn. lost to Toledo and proves they are very beatable. Again I dont want to look ahead but we need two wins on the road vs South Florida and Cinn. to come home and play Lousiville before a packed Dome. Could it happen yes it could. We as Orange fans would love this. This team is healthy and confident so lets go boys take it to the next level and us as fans will take it to the next level and pack the dome for you for Louisville

  25. @Russell MacEachern;Russell remember back when Miami was the team to beat they were cocky and arrogant to say the least. They tried bulling everyone that they played. I honestly feel the teams on their schedule(at times)were afraid to play them) I think it started to boil over when they traveled to WVA for a game and the fans there started throwing garbage cans at them when they exited the field at half time and the end of the game. Their on field antics during and after games upset the ruling body of the NCAA who during that time frame instituted new rules that tamed their behavior. Hell(according to the 30 on 30 documentary that viewed on ESPN about the “U”)they even named the rules after the most egregious players during their rein of superiority.

  26. I think th question regarding “upper body injuries ” is a valid concern. What is going on that seems to be a plague with our players?Since these two players never got in a game we must presume that these injuries occurred during practice.Both players were thought to be contributors this season Macfarlane will now be included a huge depth chart at the running back position for next season. It will be deeper if Laray Smith joins the team.

  27. CuseOnly

    @Chris – both players had existing injuries when they arrived here from high school. It happens all the time.

    Look at both of their histories from high school. Kristofer Curtis is another example. He didn’t just start getting back problems when he was here, they were pre-existing.

  28. Russell MacEachern

    @Ron,Their old arrogance is the reason I never wish them any luck,not to mention their filthy recruiting methods of the 80s/90s and desertion of the only conference who would give them a shot!!Us..the BE and recently applied to the BiG12 and when turned down announced their loyalty to the ACC…what rats!!Even there fans turned on them I guess or their popularity waned??I wonder what a cleancut coach like Al Golden applied for that job?

  29. Easy answer @russ, cleancut coach with infinite resources and an abundance of recruits…should win championships! Can’t wait to play them, hardly a fan, but they always have talent.

    @Carlton… Pitino does seem somewhat salty! Another coach that learned football does rule everything? ND is going down hard, especially if game is in Norman.

    @ron…on UofM, I like swagger! Like when the whole darn Georgia team ran down and celebrated a td…classic(they were flagged)! They failed those student athletes(?), by not translating the swag into the classroom. Some of the guys are successful: Deion, Ray Lewis, Irvin & others are sad stories(no need to SMU death penalty story was an eye opener as well. There’s worse egregious superiority complexes out there, than the U athletes could ever imagine, as young adults? They should all be paid and end this backroom $$$ crap.

  30. Russell MacEachern

    Dipper,I’ll be the first to keep my mouth shut as u sponser our newest 5* recruit!$$$$$,us poorer fan’s appreciate ur generousity!!’d u like Eli Mannings answer to RGIII?..LOL

  31. Russell MacEachern

    bigdipper,I’ll also be glad to see them to payback some unpaid debts now that were getting better than them but their awaiting sanctions that Al Golden was’nt aware of when he took the job in his fancy suit!!He always wanted the Ped U job as a Jersey boy who went to PSU and started his career their as a GA!!A JoPa disciple but I like him and think he’s the “perfect” coach!!Look what he did for Temple!!!

  32. @bigdip,please don’t take my comment the wrong way? I love to see a player have swagger and confidence when they play. Taking the celebration away from a team after scoring a touchdown was one of those B*ll sh*t rules only the fools at the NCAA could come up with. In their heyday there wasn’t any question Miami was good and the players all knew it.

    I don’t think the NCAA will give Miami the “Death Penalty”. They tried it once with SMU and realized just how big a mistake it was, not only for the school but the NCAA as well. If they go ahead and give it to Miami,then Auburn,Ohio State,Notre Dame,USC just to name a few should get it also. Just take a look at North Carolina. Hell they don’t even have real classes there for the student athlete’s to take. It leaves one to ask the question,just how good is a degree from that school? I would say worthless!!!

    @Russell MacEachern;last night at work was one of those nights that I wouldn’t trade for anything. Please don’t don’t take this the wrong way and I don’t want to sound like I’m throwing this in anyone’s face but I met (198 lb)FS Durell Eskridge and (269 lb) DE Josh Manley and wished both of them good luck for Saturday’s game against USF, and told them that Fridays game against UCONN was just unbelievable and just down right AWESOME.

    The thing that amazes me about these young men is their size. You just can’t imagine how big they are until you get a chance to stand next to them for a chat.


  33. Russell MacEachern

    Ron,by big do u mean “buff”?I played LBer and RB in HS and was 5’11” 190 and carry 200/215 as a young man and what I consider big and someone else are different?`My nephew is 6’2″ 195 and looks skinny to me!!My grampa was 6’2″ 235 and had hands like catchers mitts,I know he was BIG!!He worked in lumber camps in Canada since he was 12 yrs old!!He was legendery in my family for his strength by all who knew him!!

  34. The freshman are used on the scout team each week. They also are used as blocking dummies. That’s how they get hurt.

  35. Russell, I stand 6’2″ and weigh 260 lbs. standing next to these guys I look small. I guess that you could say “buff” Russell. for all of the players that I’ve come in contact with non are fat and are built like a stone wall. To me that’s big.

    Just for instance,if you,I and your nephews stood next to John Raymon we all would look like kids in the 4th grade. That’s how big he is. It’s hard for me to grasp the fact that these young men have just finished high school. I just canyt belief how big they are. It’s no wonder that schools in Texas,Oklahoma,Jersey and Florida get hugh crowds for a high school game.

  36. @Russell MacEachern;well Russell if your prediction comes true and Syracuse ends up with a 6-6 or 7-5 record,some people have them playing Iowa State in the Pinstripe Bowl. If that happens then I guess I’m going to make another trip to Yankee Stadium in NYC

  37. More Babble-Rabble again!!! Great win!!! I liked the 20 point win too!!! But lack of WR/RB speed again showed its ugly head. Ryan can chuck to these guys and if they catch it they should(with quality speed)go the distance. Both Lemon and Smith got caught from behind. In our history(before HCDM/dougie) a third of the time(not all the time) these plays would of scored!! But not now!!! If SU keeps this 7/8 yard plays up, simple logic tells you you need perfection and Ryan or our WR/TE/RB just aren’t that talented enough yet. It (lack of speed) will caught up to SU!!!

  38. Russell MacEachern

    Yeah Ron,must be “buff” if ur 6’2″ 260 and they look big!!These guys are on special diets and a regular workout regimen since hs!!When I was in the service I ran into the Ohio St football team having breakfast in Hollywood the day of the Rose Bowl and I was 19 but they looked like kids to me?I was 5’11” 180 w/no bodyfat and due to Marine training in better shape than them!!I think kids “football players” are bigger today!!

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