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I thought we taught these kids how to tackle.
Syracuse lasted for a little less than a half of football before Pittsburgh poured it on. Then Syracuse turned into the Syracuse of last year and failed on both ends of the ball for basically the rest of the game. Syracuse looked good early, but it was clearly not meant to be. Pittsburgh rolls over Syracuse 37 to ten.

Syracuse was just unable to move the ball in a meaningful way most of the day. While Syracuse did get 19 first downs, most of them occurred in the first half and Syracuse was only able to convert 3-13 third down attempts. Additionally Syracuse turned the ball over on downs twice. Oh yeah, then there were the three interceptions that Syracuse threw. Granted the first of Paulus’ interceptions was not his fault as his receiver missed the ball and tipped it up for Pittsburgh to return it 51 yards for a touchdown. The other two were just awful. Syracuse could not run the ball, nor could they pass. At one point it seemed as if every route that Syracuse ran was a deliberate yard short of the first down marker. Just an anemic performance from an offense that actually started off with a really nice drive to end in a field goal and put Syracuse on the board first. Garbage time TD notwithstanding, this was the most pathetic performance form the SU offense thus far.

Again, this team started out well, causing some three-and-outs including after a punt on 4th and 1 yet again. But then the defense gave up the big ball. And the best run Defense in the league kept giving up 20 yard run after 20 yard run. Several of which were directly up the middle. And that is the real travesty with this defense today. While Pittsburgh does have a talented tailback, Syracuse should have been able to stop several of the long runs, but they decided to tackle like Greg Robinson was the coach still. Arm tackles did not work last year and they will not work this year either. This is the biggest regression we have seen from a really good run defense so far this season. While everyone knows the secondary is untalented and unable to stop the pass, the run defense was very talented, but that all went out the window on Saturday.

Special Teams
Nothing bad happened here, which is good. Rob Long punted five times for a total of 202 yards, three of which behind the 20. Ryan LICHTENSTEIN hit his one field goal attempt from 29 yards out. Additionally he hit an extra point late in the game. He did just fine in this game. Mike Jones returned four kickoffs for 71 yards and got decent field position for most of the day. Nothing special but not too bad here.

The defensive play calling was fine and correct, but the offense was clearly too conservative and failed to call plays that would give the best chance of a third down conversion. Therefore, Syracuse usually did not advance the ball. And despite having the “best practice ever” this week, obviously that did not involve tackling. Sadly this team looked like a game last year. Sad really.

C (1.9)
This team took a huge step back in Pittsburgh, and hopefully they can recover by next week, but this was horrifically bad to watch, and clearly some corrections need to be made. While we all know that this team is not winning the league, and they clearly have shortcomings, this team can still get some wins with the teams they have left to face. Playing like this they will not though. At least we have a potential softball next weekend versus the recently Syracuse owned Louisville

If you want to hear more about this epic loss tune into Matt Mc’s Sports Fix around 4:25 today as I will be breaking down the game and turning to the much happier topic of SU Basketball. Of course you can always check out the podcast later today right here, just look on the right side. Of course we will have full coverage of the game tonight and the potential for another Jim Boeheim milestone.

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