Orange Fizz


Observations from SU spring game: Four key players to watch on offense 

In Fran Brown’s Syarcuse coaching debut, four different players showed up on the offensive side of the ball. Over 15,000 fans were in attendance for the game, the most in ‘Cuse history. So, who sent the historic crowd home happy and what does this mean for the squad?

Kyle McCord Senior QB

The Ohio State transfer had a dream debut inside of the dome. McCord completed 18-of-28 passes for 242 yards and a touchdown in just the first half. Many were curious if the Philadelphia native has the ability to lead the SU offense, and so far he has proved more than capable to the task.

Trebor Pena Redshirt Junior WR

With the departure of Damian Alford to Utah earlier this week, the wide receiver room has looked thin besides Oronde Gasden II. Pena showed on Saturday why fans should start paying more attention to him. The redshirt junior had seven catches for 130 yards hauling in the pigskin every time he was targeted. Last season, Pena was primarily used as a return man with just 271 yards and a touchdown. Lookout for the New Jersey native to have an increased roll come this fall.

LeQuint Allen Junior RB

The All-ACC running back was off to a hot start once again this weekend. Allen finished the contest with two touchdowns, rushing for 73 yards on just six carries. The performance in the spring game should be no surprise, as the running back had over 1,000 yards last season. Allen is poised to build off a quality campaign last season, and make a big impact in the Orange backfield this year.

Yasin Willis – Freshman RB

While Allen is slated to have the starting job for next season, newcomer Yasin Willis raised eyebrows on Saturday night. The Newark native was the number one recruit in all of New Jersey and slotted in at 12th for running backs in the nation. Our very own Tyler Aitken said to watch out for Willis in the game, and he was right. In his first appearance for SU, the four star had 91 yards and a rushing touchdown. Willis is the future of the Syracuse backfield, and has a great mentor to learn from in Allen this season.

Overall Analysis

McCord, Pena, Allen, and Willis must be leaders for the SU offense if the Orange want to be competitive this season. McCord must rely on Pena as a second option, and Pena has to take the attention off the Gadsden II to let the passing game flow. As for the ground game, Allen needs to replicate his 2023 while rubbing off on the young rookie to give Syracuse running back depth. Ideally, the Orange will build an elite backfield like they did a couple of years ago with Sean Tucker and Allen. The season is just around four months away, but the buzz around SU football is real, and for right reason.

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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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