What happened to Syracuse’s defense in Evanston?
- Drew Allen looks in over his head. The Wildcats defense completely befuddled him, and Allen has now thrown 6 picks in 2 starts. Not sure Terrel Hunt is quite as good as he looked on that touchdown drive he led late, but he can’t be a worse option than Allen right now, can he?
- Not to get too far ahead of ourselves here, but the math is not good for Syracuse to get to a bowl game after the 0-2 start. We talked in the offseason about finding six wins in a much more difficult conference than the Big East, and splitting the first two games was going to be key. In the final 10 games, the Orange will now need to go 6-4 to be bowl eligible. Again, it’s only early September so thinking postseason is probably the stupidest thing I could do. But assuming SU beats Wagner and Tulane, it needs to find 4 wins in the ACC schedule that includes the two best teams in the league (Clemson and Florida State). So assuming the Orange lose those two games, SU would have to be 4-2 in the rest of its conference play. Can this team go to NC State, Maryland or Georgia Tech and win? The Orange would have to win one of those roadies AND beat BC, Pitt and Wake at home to be bowl eligible.
- I thought Scott Shafer coached defense. What the hell happened on Saturday in Evanston? The Wildcats did whatever they wanted offensively, and scored within the first minute of action. In fact, Northwestern probably could’ve put up 60 points but seemed to lose interest in the second half. The offense was going to be a work in progress with a new quarterback, we all knew that much. But Shafer is a defensive-minded guy who needs to be cooking up a better scheme than what we saw Saturday.
- Can someone please remind me why SU switched Sugar Bear Thompson to defense? You’re gonna get sick of me harping on this. In fact, you may already be tired of it. But in an offense without enough weapons in the passing game (especially with the injury to Adrian Flemming) why would you remove a 4-star caliber athlete? He’s 6’4″, 215 lbs. and runs a 4.6 40. He had offers from Michigan and Vanderbilt. We’ve seen what Ashton Broyld means to this stagnant offense. He’s a matchup problem. That’s what Sugar Bear could’ve been. And a huge, soft-handed, fast tight end would be the ultimate security blanket for a young QB.
- The good news? Northwestern is going to be the third-best team SU plays all year (behind Clemson and FSU). There’s no shame in losing on the road to a perennial Big 10 contender. You just want to see SU play it more competitively. Wagner next up, and SU should roll by 2-3 touchdowns.