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Syracuse - Louisville Postgame Reactions OR Broken

This is how I looked in the bar.
Syracuse led in every offensive category against Louisville, except points, the only category that truly matters. Unbelievably (or more than likely you saw this coming a mile away) Syracuse loses the game by a point, blowing several chances and simply failing to make plays of even the most basic level in college football. Syracuse loses in Louisville ten to nine.

A lot of focus has been placed on the quarterback situation at Syracuse, but without Delone Carter Syracuse would have not performed as well in this game or several others this season. Delone Carter (28att, 129yds, 4.6avg, 1 TD) had a nice day and looked unstoppable on several run plays during the day. Greg Paulus (12/16, 89yds, 0 TD, 1 INT) looked alright on this day, but without a major target to throw to, he gives up too easily on a play, got sacked several times, and tried to run way too much. It was an exercise in futility in passing on this day, and just to make sure Syracuse couldn’t come back, Marcus Sales tipped the ball to the L’ville defender to effectively end the game for Syracuse. Just dreadful. While Paulus did not sink this game for Syracuse, he didn’t overtly help either.

While Syracuse held Louisville to only 151 total yards, a decade low for Louisville, they could not stop Louisville when they needed to. The secondary, save for one interception that led to Syracuse’s touchdown, was dreadful in the fourth quarter. They are still not able to finish a game. This allowed Louisville to march down the field and score to put them up by one point. While the defense held Louisville to only 34 rushing yards, again, Syracuse could not stop Louisville through the air. Had Syracuse won this game, it could have been one of the best grades the defense gets all year. But it was not meant to be.

Special Teams
Syracuse missed an extra point. Extra points should be automatic. Always and forever, extra points should be automatic. Sadly the hold was not good, and Syracuse missed it. Of course, unlike Northwestern earlier in the Dome when they botch a special teams play it ends up in the end zone, Syracuse just fails to convert. Additionally, although it did not count, Syracuse let Louisville run a punt return back. Then, before they started their final drive Syracuse again let them have a massive punt return to set up their final scoring drive. While Rob Long punted extremely well in this game, and even Ryan LICHTENSTEIN had a nice pooch kick, Syracuse’s return coverage was dreadful in this game. Returns for Syracuse were good, including the last return to set up the failed final drive for Syracuse, but they started well in range that they should have been able to at least kick another game winning field goal.

I’m not going to be too, too critical of the coaching staff, because really the issues in this game were not bad play calls or poor planning, but failed execution by the players on the field. That being said, they did fail in many areas, specifically special teams coverage. At this point, I wouldn’t be surprised of Doug Marrone fired Special Teams Coach Bob Casullo just to save some face. I bet he won’t, but it could be a good idea. Either way, there was nothing novel in this game for Syracuse. Offensively they ran the ball until they were stopped, and threw when they had to. However, when it is third and long, why do teams run up the middle ever? Take a shot at converting or at least getting a chunk of yards back. Additionally, there were a ton of penalties for Syracuse in this game. In that regard the team was not overly prepared.

C- (1.65)
This is easily one of the most depressing games I have witnessed. Syracuse could have won this game, or at least had several opportunities to stop Louisville, but they failed to make even the most basic of plays and allowed Louisville to go ahead, and then end Syracuse’s final drive. I was helpless to sit and watch Syracuse squander opportunity after opportunity and find ways to lost this game and play down to Louisville. Frankly I am embarrassed Syracuse was involved in this game. This is a low of low points for a program that started out with lofty expectation and much improvement. But with talent missing from quitting and injury, this team is just unable to win games they could have in week 1.

Syracuse will now turn to Rutgers this week, also a winnable game in week 1, but after their drubbing of USF this past week, this looks like a drubbing is coming for Syracuse, unless some lucky breaks that have escaped Syracuse all year suddenly appear. This game was so notably bad that Orange::44 got some prime national coverage thanks to Yahoo!’s college football blog Dr. Saturday. Even they recognize how tough this stuff is to stomach week in and week out. Our good friend Sean from Nunes/Magician also appears. It’s been a tough couple of weeks, so it will be nice to turn our focus to some basketball in the next few days. Anything is a welcome distraction from the current disaster and last place team that we now have.

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4 Responses to “Syracuse - Louisville Postgame Reactions OR Broken”

  1. # Anonymous Anonymous

    The Offense gets a higher grade than the Defense? You have lost all credabilty with that one. You sound like you have the same bromance with Paulus that Marrone has.  

  2. # Blogger Brian Harrison

    As I explained, this was DC3's game. He obviously had the bulk of the offensive yards and the touchdown, and if you watched the game you saw he practically had his way with Louisville. That is why the offense had the higher grade, and if you think defense and special teams didn't lose this game and it is you my friend with an unhealthy bromance. As for Paulus, I've said several times on this blog that it is probably time to sit Paulus, but thanks for reading.  

  3. # Anonymous MrPlow99

    Misspelling "credibility" when accusing someone of losing theirs is hilarious. That said, I agree with Anonymous' sentiment. I thought the defense deserved a good grade. They held a team to 10 points, and had held them to 3 until poor special teams play set up L'ville with really good field position. That, along with the missed XP & the punt return TD that was overturned would make me give the special teams an F, or perhaps a D- since Long did punt the ball well all game.  

  4. # Blogger Brian Harrison

    I can understand your reasoning Mr. Plow. That name again is Mr. Plow. Special Teams were not good, but because LICHTENSTEIN hit the FG earlier, and the team punted well I gave them the higher grade. The defense was great overall yes, but when it mattered they sucked, and that's really what I graded on. Thanks for stopping by.  

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