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Bright Future Ahead: How the 6th Win & Bowl Will Help Syracuse’s Recruiting

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via Boston Herald

The goal for Syracuse heading into its regular-season finale against Boston College was to stop Heisman candidate Andre Williams and become bowl eligible. Syracuse did just that, and now in dramatic fashion finds itself potentially heading to a bowl for the third time in four years.

This is the type of season that should have recruits excited about the Orange. Here’s the reasons why: Scott Shafer seemed to be holding back emotions at the podium after what a remarkable way to end a game and a regular season. The head coach proved he could walk the walk, and build a defense in his own mold. Syracuse had to be “hard-nosed,” like Shafer proclaimed so many times, to survive a QB change in Week 3, winning multiple road games in the ACC, having one of the stingiest defenses in the nation and coming back to win over BC to clinch win no. six.

 

Defensive recruits should want to play for Shafer. His unit harassed quarterbacks all season, and was the backbone of a team that, surprisingly, should be headed to another bowl game. Offensive recruits should be pleased with how young players like Terrel Hunt, Brisley Estime, George Morris and Devante McFarlane were developed. They were all allowed plenty of touches, and Hunt was named the starter by Week 3 despite the age and reputation of Drew Allen. Shafer proved he was not against playing young guys who could make a difference.

 

Offensive players should also be intrigued by playing in George McDonald’s scheme. While it was rough to watch at times, it came on strong at the end and McDonald was named Coordinator of the Week by Athlon. A big performance in the bowl game would solidify the idea that McDonald got better as the season progressed.

 

Hunt saved one of his best games for last, completing 67 percent of his passes and two touchdowns, both to Parris. He threw for 270 yards and rushed for nearly 100. Hunt’s season should show potential commits about how much a player can develop and grow over the course of the year.

 

The players said there was something special about this team and how they just want to keep playing. With all of the seniors on the team, they have one more shot. This is a program that didn’t get swallowed up by a new conference. Instead, it stood toe-to-toe with every team besides FSU (a potential national champion) and Georgia Tech. And you could explain away the Jackets loss as simply the wrong scheme to stop a quirky, unfamiliar attack. It would be the third bowl game in four years, and establish an expectation that the Orange plays in the postseason every winter.

 

Hopefully, the ACC will be able to work Syracuse into a bowl game, even though the conference has eight bowl spots but 11 eligible teams. That will get lightened slightly, assuming FSU beats Duke, as the ‘Noles would then move into the national title game. If the Orange gets a bowl bid, recruits will have plenty to like about joining the Syracuse program this National Signing Day.

 

Posted by: Austin Pollack & D.A.
The Fizz is owned, edited and operated by Damon Amendolara. D.A. is an ’01 Syracuse graduate from the Newhouse School with a degree in Broadcast Journalism.

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