I am fucking done with this team.
The Orange earned a key victory last Friday, April 20th, with a big win over #2 Albany, winning 17-13. The previously unbeaten Great Danes came into the Carrier Dome looking to take out a struggling Syracuse team that basically has its back against the wall. The Orange finally delivered in every aspect of their game (except for a four goal stretch in which Albany dominated in the first half). Peter Coluccini made some spectacular saves (15 Total), especially in the fourth period, and what can you say about the offensive awesomeness that is Mike Leveille, scoring five goals and assisting on two. Syracuse also dominated on face offs and ground balls. If you can check out the highlights I highly recommend you do so. This places the Orange back in contention for an at large bid in the NCAA Lacrosse Tournament. Syracuse is now ranked #12, while the loss dropped Albany to 8th in the latest poll on April 23rd.
Syracuse travels to UMass this Saturday, April 28th, to take on a Minutemen team that is certainly no patsy, but in a similar position to Syracuse with a win or go home attitude. This rivalry has become pretty intense over the last few seasons so look for this game to be an excellent display of lacrosse skills and guts. That is, if you have ESPN U. Syracuse will finish its season in the Carrier Dome hosting Colgate on May 5th.
Also, because of the win against #2 Albany, John Desko was named the US Lacrosse Coach of the Week. Congratulations to Coach Desko.
Albany box score can be found here.
We do not normally cover the ladies, but they earned a mention by earning a share of the Big East Lacrosse Regular Season Championship. They earned a #2 seed in the inaugural Big East Lacrosse Tournament and will play #3 seed Rutgers in the opening round this Friday. Did I mention the tournament is being held in the Carrier Dome? If they advance, they will play the winner of #1 Georgetown and #4 Notre Dame on Sunday. Hopefully they will earn a spot in the big dance by earning the automatic bid the tournament winner will receive. The Orange earned a 4-1 record in the Big East only losing to Georgetown, the tournament’s #1 seed, whom they share the regular season title with. Lisa Miller has taken this program from the ground up and has earned the respect of her peers. She was also named head coach of the National Canadian Women’s Lacrosse Team. Congratulations to her and the program.
The annual Spring Football Game was held last Saturday in the Carrier Dome. While much ado has been made about the attendance, really what matters is what was happening on the field. Andrew Robinson went 12-19 for 146 yards throwing one touchdown and one interception (which really was not his fault). He led a 67 yard opening drive for a touchdown and looked fairly sharp and impressive from the footage I’ve seen. The offensive line did not look like a porous sieve for once, allowing time for Robinson to make mostly good passes,which in my opinion is the key to the entire season. After the game, the receivers stated that Robinson has a much crisper pass. Much more crisp than that oaf of a quarterback Patterson (who displayed his mad football skills on Pro Day in the Carrier Dome).
Hope once again springs eternal for the Orange Football Team, who will take the field for the first time next season on August 31st against Washington in the Carrier Dome. Greg Robinson is hoping that Andrew Robinson is the answer to a team that still struggled to put together a decent offense game in and game out.
ESPN.com recently did an article (once again) on the hopefulness of the Syracuse squad that is looking to resurge and take its rightful place in the top tier of the Big East teams. The highlight for me is Joe Starkey, who covers the Big East for ESPN.com and the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review, who calls our receivers corps “downright dangerous”. I love that.
I personally have not commented too much on this project yet. I have pretty strong feelings about how this movie should turn out as I not only went to Syracuse, but I was born in Elmira, NY, and my family still lives 15 minutes away from Elmira in nearby Horseheads, NY. Every day for the past three summers when I have been home I passed the statue of Ernie Davis in front of Ernie Davis Middle School on the way to work, and my mother attended Elmira Free Academy for High School, like Davis did. I also know his mother, Marie Fleming who still lives in Elmira, is worried about how it will turn out too.
I think it is a little too early to judge, as the film is selected for a 2009 release. However, the cast seems to be good for the rolls they are in, there is excitement about the project, and filming is underway in the city of Chicago.
Really my only gripe is that at this time I don’t believe they plan on doing much shooting in Elmira or Syracuse. I only hope they choose the locations they film at very carefully because there are people that will certainly be able to tell the difference. My hope is that, much like the documentary Spike Lee directed on Jim Brown, Syracuse University, and possibly Elmira, will get its own showing of the movie and possibly a Q&A panel with the films stars and makers.
Stay tuned for further updates and commentary on The Express, and check for updates at the blog of a former Elmira Star-Gazette Reporter who happens to be in Chicago and is filing updates from the set with the paper. The paper also has a special section called Ernie Davis: The Elmira Express. Look for articles related to Ernie Davis here as well.
I ask you this… is it really a curse of this blog and Matt Glaude, or it is really Daryl Gross? Think about it.
Our friend over at Troy Nunes is an Absolute Magician got a little love from the Syracuse Post-Standard’s Donnie Webb, giving him the old hat tip on finding some YouTube videos that are hilarious. By the way, if you are not checking out his blog… you are pretty wrong.
Well that about wraps it up for this edition of the grab bag. I’ll try to do some timelier posts once finals for my law school classes are done. Until next time remember this; the weather in Syracuse is gorgeous seven months out of the year. The other five we’re playing basketball, and as always, go orange.
Honestly, how many times have you said "Well, things can't get any worse, right?" over the last two years?
My advice: stop saying it; the butterfly effect is substantial.
Delone Carter was poised to be Syracuse's only reliable contributor in 2007. With a green quarterback stepping behind center and a constant "work-in-progress" offensive line, Carter -- along with Taj Smith, arguably -- was the only bright spot for an offense that could be worse than its 2005 incarnation.
And now Carter is broken with all signs indicating that he will not materially participate next year.
I do not worry that Carter will fully heal and spring back to form in 2008. What is worrisome at this juncture is the status of Curtis "Boonah" Brinkley and Paul Chiara. Brinkley is still rehabilitating from his knee surgery this offseason and Chiara has not done a thing on the football field during his tenure that promotes any ringing endorsement. Brinkley was poised to spell Carter this season, but he was not a "1-A" option. He was clearly a "B" option, fulfilling that role out of a lack of depth.
All in all, Brinkley is going to carry a heavy load in 2007, and because of that, I am increasingly concerned.
. . . On Syracuse Orange Lacrosse
There is no point to sugarcoat the obvious: this team stinks.
I have been fervently following Syracuse lacrosse for almost 10 years now and this group of athletes is the worst I've ever seen put together on the Carrier Dome carpet. Lacrosse season has always been my favorite time of year. Now, I just hope that everyone wears the same uniform combination when the Orange charges out of the tunnel.
The Rutgers contest aside, Syracuse has yet to develop an offensive or defensive identity. Dan Hardy has been somewhat of a disappointment on attack, Greg Rommel appears to still have rust on his stick, Steve Panarelli has become Ric Beardsley without the talent, and Peter Coluccini continues to flip-flop between horrendous and stupendous.
It is increasingly frustrating to even think about this squad and its possibilities. Frankly, a loss Friday to Albany would put a nice, solid stamp on this year in Syracuse athletics:
1. A four-win football campaign;
2. The worst tournament snub in NCAA basketball history; and
3. The first season Syracuse has not been invited the men's lacrosse championship tournament since 1982.
These articles are in no particular order. They are all representative of the overall quality of work present here, and the many varied types of articles we actually write. It is not all sunshine and Syracuse (is there ever sunshine in Syracuse except on “The Day”?).
Calhoun’s Connvicts by Matt Glaude
Nothing says “we hate you” like listing all of your rival school’s student athletes that have gotten into a legal pickle (there were a couple coaches there too). This article has had a few updates, but of course, much like Law & Order, the original is still the best. Complete with the best mug shot possibly ever taken, this article starts my list of the best moments of Orange::44.
Good Friday? Try Great Friday! by Matt Glaude
Sometimes all you need to say is five words. Sometimes you just need to swear like a sailor. Sometimes you need to wear a cup. These are the lessons we learn from one of our YouTube filled articles. Spawning several catch phrases in Orange Nation, we first see Jim Boeheim from the 2006 Big East Championship press conference after the Cincinnati game. It just feels kind of good to say “that is the most bullshit thing I’ve seen in X years”. Then we throw back to a presser from 1994 with then UMass coach John Calipari and the grizzled John Chaney of Temple, where he said he would “fucking kill” Calipari. Pretty dramatic stuff. Then… well I think the third video explains itself. If you are a guy, watch with caution. Plus, I think this may be the best title to an article on our website. Sadly, the Chaney video was pulled from that post, but I found it again here.
Tears Are Falling by Brian Harrison
Occasionally less is really more. After watching the “football frustration” of the 2005 season I thought that we were moving forward with Syracuse Football in 2006. While we did improve, we still lost some games that we should not have, and we still played worse than we really were. After listening to a game that we could have won, but did not, I posted this article which was just a picture and a few lines. That was all it took for people to know exactly how we all felt. This article also helped us earn runner up in The Job Award. A picture really is worth a thousand words.
Orange::44 Jumps the Shark by Matt Glaude
It is not often when you have a specialized blog, such as this one dealing with Syracuse Athletics, that you usually get articles about things like the National Spelling Bee. And that it is probably the funniest entry I have ever read on any blog ever. It also was a liveblog, which we usually do not get to do around here. As Burnt Orange Nation said it best, “no fewer than six laugh out loud lines”. I think this article really defines the spirit of Orange::44. We try not to take ourselves too seriously. Next time, on a very special episode of The Jim Boeheim Show...
NBA Draft Liveblog! by Brian Harrison
Speaking of liveblogs… here was my entry for most work done while watching five hours of really trivial television. This was really the first big article I wrote for the site, and one that I received a fair amount of attention for simply because I actually watched five hours of coverage. Needless to say, I probably will not be doing that again. It is still one of my favorite articles however, and notable in how comprehensive and diverse our coverage can be here at Orange::44.
Try Burning My Couch and I’ll Cut You by Brian Harrison
While Matt sparked this debate on his FanHouse site, I brought it to the readers of Orange::44, which then spawned a couple articles on this site and the orange blogisphere. I parlayed this into a basketball article of similar nature as well. But really, this is here because I think that this is one of the reasons we blog here; to spark debate among friends and colleagues, and piss off rival fans. This article did both. Awesome.
In Memoriam by Matt Glaude
Final on my list, we remembered Chris Sawyer, a 2004 graduate of Syracuse University who lost a battle with cancer in October of 2006. He played Otto The Orange at many home basketball and football games, but for those of us that knew him, he was an individual who brightened a room and was a good friend to many. This article shows the best of us here, and shows just what a great community the people that read our blog, and the people whose blogs we read are.
I have enjoyed my time writing for this site. The debates and commentary we have created here, as well as the ones we have joined in on at other sites are truly entertaining and an enjoyable supplement to the standard Syracuse media we all know. I have to say thanks to Matt Glaude for letting me join this blog without really knowing what he was going to get from me. That kind of blind faith is refreshing in our gloomy Syracuse corner of the world. To all that continue to read our site, again I say thanks. Also, to those that we read on a constant basis, I say thanks for being so entertaining and well versed. Special hat tip to the Orange Consortium, our fellow partners in crime. Keep up the good work. Keep reading, there is plenty of bitter heartbreak yet to come.