Terrel Hunt seemed surprised after he was ejected for punching Villanova linebacker Dillon Lucas, and he wasn’t the only one. Postgame, Scott Shafer talked about the incident as more of a competitive and fiery play than a mistake. He said three or four years ago it would not have been an issue. That may be true, but the reality is that Hunt punched an opponent. He needs to know that that’s not acceptable.
Earlier this week Hunt talked to the press about how he plans on being more of a team leader this year. It’s his redshirt junior season and he is the returning starting quarterback; he needs to be a leader. Last night proved that he is not yet ready to take on that responsibility, however. A team leader is smarter than that.
Looking at video of the play it’s understandable why Hunt would be upset. He was hit in the head in a defenseless position and had his helmet rolled up on his face. It was definitely painful. His reaction is still not warranted, though. Hits like that are part of football. Punches are not.
Luckily for Hunt and the Orange, SU still beat the Wildcats without its number one quarterback for a large chunk of the game. Any other game on the schedule is most likely a loss without Hunt under center. He is that important to this team. That is what makes the punch so shocking. He’s Syracuse’s go-to guy; the success of this team depends on him and he forgot that last night.
Shafer may not see Hunt’s punch as a major infraction, but that’s exactly what it is. Hopefully SU’s quarterback will learn from his mistake and bounce back in two weeks against Central Michigan. His team certainly needs him to.
Posted by: Connor Morrissette