It was a pretty exciting morning on the SU campus. The new coach, Dino Babers introduced at the football facilities next door to Manley Field House. The room was electric, full of other SU coaches—notably Mike Hopkins and lacrosse coach John Desko—athletes, boosters and even a few professors. And Babers came out and entertained. He sold the room he had some people laughing.
People were happy to hear what Babers had to say. Athletic Director Mark Coyle said he was excited and attracted to Dino because “he had done it for four years.” A legitimate concern and hope for Syracuse fans in this coaching search.
At the moment he really won the press conference, Babers asked everyone to close their eyes. Everyone, he even waited for a few reporters to close their eyes before he would start. Then Babers relayed a vision of what his team will be. Sending a message: “You’re in the Carrier Dome. The house is filled. The feeling is electric. The noise is deafening. You have a defense that is relentless. You have a special teams that has been well coached. You have an offense that will not huddle. And you have a game that is faster than you have ever seen on turf. Open your eyes. That is going to be a reality. That is going to be Syracuse Football.”
He makes you excited. He comes here with a plan that makes you think, “If they do what he says, they will be really good.” It is a much different play than playing “hardnosed.” This is a legitimate plan to win some games.
The question becomes, can Babers run his system with the talent that Syracuse has? Remember, this is the same system as Baylor, and they didn’t exactly have great talent when Art Briles and Dino got there. As Dino reminded everyone this morning, Baylor had a 33 year bowl appearance drought before Briles got there to turn around the program. So it isn’t like they could recruit 4- and 5-star guys from the start.
Babers has a plan. Not just for winning, but for exciting football. He wants the fans to be involved in the program. He said towards the end of his remarks, “If we win, they’ll come. But we need to do our part.” He realizes that winning is only part of the equation. A large part, but there is still more to be done. The program needs to reach out to the community, and he seems to be ready for that task as well as getting the team ready on the field.
Posted By: Seth Goldberg