College football is finally upon us and Syracuse is set to kick-off its 2017 season Friday night against FCS opponent Central Connecticut State University. The Blue Devils are making their first ever trip to the Carrier Dome and are likely just hoping not to get embarrassed by an FBS team that only won four games last season. Here is everything you need to know about the team from New Britain, Connecticut.
Last Season’s Record: 2-9
Yes. The Blue Devils went 2-9 last season. One of those two wins came against a Division II school in Bowie State so they went 1-8 against teams from their own “level” of the college football pyramid. The lone FCS win came against Sacred Heart, who actually had a decent season, finishing 6-5.
Below Average Defense, Worse Offense:
Every Syracuse fan surely expects this game to be decided by halftime. The Orange are a free-scoring offense matched up against a team from a lower tier of football. Well, here is even better news. Central Connecticut State was average on offense and well below average on defense last season. The Blue Devils were 75th in total defense and 80th in total offense in FCS last season out of 124 teams. They totaled just over 22 points per game but allowed almost 35.
Who to know:
The Blue Devils do have one positive going for them. They had decent quarterback play last season and their signal-caller is back for his junior year. Jacob Dolegala completed just under 60% of his passes last season (which is not stellar but not terrible) and threw for just under 3,000 yards in 11 starts. The Blue Devils are also returning their top rusher from last season. Cameron Nash ran for 632 yards on 149 rushes (4.2 yards per carry) during his junior year. However, it has to be noted that Nash put the ball on the ground six times.
If you have the urge to delve deeper into Syracuse’s opponent, all of their stats and information can be found on their website.
There is no reason to think that the Orange will not win and win comfortably. The good thing is that the Dino Babers’ team is set to start 1-0. The bad news is there is likely very little to be taken out of this game against a lowly FCS team.