1. Camping World Champions
You can call it recency bias but this feels like it has to be number one. The win itself wasn’t anything crazy. We all know West Virginia fans are going to make excuses about who wasn’t out on the field and it was overall a pretty sloppy performance from the Orange. However, it was the perfect culmination of one of the biggest seasons in program history. It was the cherry on top of Eric Dungey’s career. Not to mention all the baggage of recent SU football seasons that made this even more fulfilling. There was no Dino Babers post game speech this time but that’s because this was no upset. This was just the best SU football team since 2001 doing it’s job like they did all year.
Ladies and gentlemen, the most Eric Dungey play of all time: pic.twitter.com/zpJNrrJi0b
— Orange Fizz (@OrangeFizz) December 29, 2018
2. Michigan State Sweet 16 Stunner
If the football team hadn’t gone and won ten freaking games out of the blue this would be a well deserved number one moment. Like the bowl game, this was not pretty to watch. In fact, it was basically the Cheez-It bowl of March Madness games. It was a straight up rockfight. That was just how Jimbo wanted it though. Honestly it may have been the best defensive performance of the 17-18 college basketball season by any team. We’re talking about a Michigan State team that many, including my dumb-self, had winning the NCAA tournament that year. The zone made them look silly after doing the same to TCU and Arizona State. In a mere two weeks, Syracuse went from failing to make the NCAA tournament for the second straight year to being one of the final 16 teams left. Crazy how quickly sports change sometimes.
3. Dungey Dominates BC
The regular-season finale was SU legend Eric Dungey in peak form. Six total TD’s and 423 total yards in the 42-21 thumping on the road. Eagles coach Steve Addazio might still be having nightmares of Dungey when he goes to sleep. This was really cool for a couple reasons. It’s always fun to beat BC, especially on the road when they’re having a good year. But also because it came right after the demoralizing ND loss. We didn’t even know if Dungey was going to play in this game and it felt like SU was going to skid to the end of the season without him yet again.
4. Syracuse Tops NC State in Top-25 Primetime Shootout
Sticking with football because you know, Syracuse won 10 games when they were projected to win 5 to start the year. This time, let’s acknowledge another heroic Dungey performance. We didn’t know if he was going to play before this one either, except not because of injuries. Instead because it felt like Tommy DeVito was going to JD McCoy him. Dealing with all the adversity and pressure of losing his team during his senior season, Dungey delivered some of the best deep balls of his career and outplayed future NFL quarterback Ryan Finley handedly. The Top-25 win in primetime meant Syracuse was bowl eligible for the first time since 2013. But, as we now know, that was just the beginning.
5. Tyus Battle Drops One on G’Town
Knowing what we know now, It feels like this year’s basketball doesn’t deserve to be mentioned on this list. But, when Syracuse beats Georgetown with basically a buzzer-beater from their best player who scored 26 points in the game, it feels sacrilegious to leave it off the list. This game was a microcosm of the season. In the first half, SU looked like a middle school team on offense. In the second half, they looked like a final four team. Here’s to some more of the latter in 2019.