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Lacrosse Weekly - 4/28/10

Desko sums up what most of the fans thought of Providence's game.

Providence may be one of the worst teams in the nation. In terms of records they haven’t won a game since April of 2009 and are the only winless team in Division 1. We all expected then #1 Syracuse to blow by Providence in a game with top talent on one side, and an upstart program newly playing with house money. But this game was brutal to watch for a different reason. Providence slowed the game down and gave everyone in favor of a lacrosse shot clock exhibit A. I’ll address this and more in this very dense edition of lacrosse weekly, but first we have to talk about Syracuse’s ninth win in a row. They beat Providence in the Dome on Senior Day 14 to five.
Syracuse started the scoring in this game with a fun behind the back goal from Chris Daniello. Syracuse added two more in the first quarter before Providence got on the board in the second. Providence played their game of slowing the ball and their goalie Christian Dzwilewski playing shortly after a death in the family brilliantly, contributed to a small Syracuse advantage of only 6-3. Being down to Syracuse by only three at the half is a huge victory. But they Syracuse outscored Providence five to two in the third quarter and earned the only three goals in the last quarter to put Syracuse up by nine goals to finish the game.

Providence played an EXTREMELY slow pace which tried to limit possessions for Syracuse. However it also meant that Providence wasn’t scoring either. Now, this strategy is fine if you are still only down a couple of goals, but when you are losing by six goals and it is already the second half, maybe you want to try and push the ball and get some quick scores instead of just holding the ball. The Providence defense was actually pretty impressive in the first half though as they implored a nifty zone defense that Syracuse had trouble getting good looks from five to 15 yards away from the goal. However, it seemed like anything on the doorstep went in for Syracuse. Similarly, it was when Syracuse passed crisply around the crease that they found great success. However that was really not possible until the second half. Both teams had several turnovers at the half.

Chris Daniello and Cody Jamieson were the leading scorers of the day. They both had hat tricks and two assists a piece. Max Bartig had two goals on the day and six others added a goal a piece. Four others assisted on goals. Joel White, the consistent goundball vacuum, had five in this game, along with John Lade, one of the best defenders in the country. Syracuse surprisingly had a very bad day at the X. Jeremy Thompson, who lead the nation in faceoff percentage, was 0-5 on the day. Gavin Jenkinson had a much better day with eight wins out of 13 Josh Knight won 1-4, and Tim Harder was 0-1 to round out Syracuse’s faceoff attempts. John Galloway earns another win allowing five goals and making four saves in three quarters of work. Al Cavalieri played well in his last game in the Carrier Dome, making two saves and allowing 0 goals playing 13 and a half minutes. Finally, Nathan Farabee made one save and allowed 0 goals in a minute and a half of work.

No surprise in how Providence played that SU dominated them in shots. Syracuse took 45, while Providence only shot 15 times. The Orange also dominated on groundballs (as expected), picking up 37 to PC’s 32. Providence again led in faceoffs on the day, winning 14 of 23, while Syracuse won nine. Syracuse was successful in their extra-man offense, capitalizing on three of four opportunities, while Providence was 0-2 in their chances. Providence had 15 saves in the game, while Syracuse had seven. Finally, Providence had 27 turnovers, while Syracuse had only 14. The complete box score can be found here.

Syracuse, due to Providence’s weak strength, actually managed to drop in both the Inside Lacrosse Media Poll and the Coaches Poll. They are now #2 in both behind #1 Virginia. UVA earned 15 first place votes, with Syracuse still earning six. Both Virginia and Syracuse earned five first place votes a piece from the coaches, but Virginia edged out Syracuse by one point in the poll. Maryland, North Carolina, and Duke round out the top five as both polls are identical. The “independent” ACC teams have their little four team tournament to thank.

Speaking of that ACC Tournament, the NCAA’s first RPI numbers have been released. Syracuse is currently listed at #4 behind Maryland, North Carolina, and Virginia. Without question Virginia is a great team and probably just has the edge over Syracuse. However, because these ACC teams (which are technically independent in the NCAA’s eyes because by rule you need to have six teams to constitute a conference) have at least one more game with the other strong teams in their conference, they artificially inflate their RPI and strength of schedule. Last year the NCAA Selection Committee was not fooled by this tournament for the first time in a while. Hopefully they will not be fooled again this year by not giving so much weight to those numbers and look at resumes and the talent on the field. The complete RPI numbers for all 60 teams can be found here. May 3rd will be the next date the NCAA updates their RPI numbers.

Now let’s take a look around the country for scores. Games involving Big East opponents are in italics.

Friday April 23:

Duke 12 – Virginia 16 in ACC Tournament

Maryland 13 – North Carolina 5 in ACC Tournament

Saturday April 24:

Denver 9 – Fairfield 8

Johns Hopkins 8 – Navy 9 in OT

UMBC 8 – Vermont 7 in OT

Holy Cross 10 – Army 13

Notre Dame 13 – St. John’s 6

Loyola 17 – Hobart 12

Princeton 8 – Harvard 11

Brown 13 – Cornell 10

Colgate 7 – Bucknell 8 in OT

Massachusetts 13 – Georgetown 12

Stony Brook 15 – Albany 0

Sunday April 25:

Villanova 8 – Rutgers 4

Maryland 6 – Virginia 10 in ACC Championship

As always, the complete Inside Lacrosse scoreboard is found here.

Now we take our weekly look at the Big East Conference:

1. #2 Syracuse 11-1 (4-0)

2. #13/12 Villanova 9-4 (3-1)

3. #15/14 Georgetown 7-5 (3-1)

4. ARV/#19 Notre Dame 7-5 (2-3)

5. St. John’s 5-7 (2-3)

6. Rutgers 5-7 (1-3)

7. Providence 0-12 (0-4)

Back to the shot clock issue for a moment, the Providence game was a big illustration that a shot clock could add to some games that could be slow and bad. However, I do not think a shot clock is necessary at this point. The majority of games are not like this. The vast majority of games are fast, entertaining, and features around at least 16 goals combined between the two teams. For instance, Loyola and Hobart combined for 29 goals. If anything, I’d be for a “two point” line in college lacrosse before a shot clock. Either way, the slow down is a decent strategy to limit possessions of an opposing team, however you have to remember that the team that has the most points wins, not the team that held the ball the longest.

Also, in a huge victory for coaches and the media, Johns Hopkins has dropped out of both polls. To further illustrate that Hopkins is absolutely stinko this season (Thanks for hurting our RPI Blue Jays. You used to be a good win.), Orange::44 founder and current Hoya Suxa proprietor has written an excellent article to illustrate just how much Hopkins has fallen. It’s exactly the kind of awesome lacrosse stuff he used to write on the regular here. Seeing as it’s pretty numbers intensive, and relatively serious, he chose to post it over here instead of the more incendiary Hoya Suxa. We’re grateful. Check out the article here.

Finally, Syracuse has been known for fantastic trick shots this season. It started with Cody Jamieson making it on the Sportscenter Top 10 with his one handed through the legs shot. Then Tim Desko lit it up with a goal through his legs facing the opposite way. Then Jamieson continued to hit behind the back shots. The SU Lax team is now on Twitter (@SUMensLacrosse) and you should probably be following them, but also they want to know what the best SU goal of the year is so far. Be sure to let them know. Enjoy Jamieson talking about trick shots here thanks to CitrusTV.

Syracuse will next take on #19 Notre Dame (7-5, 2-3) in an allegedly sold out game in South Bend at 7:00pm on Saturday May 1st. It’s on ESPN U so chances are you can watch it. It should be a great game as Notre Dame has really played well lately and is now ranked. They’ve got good wins versus Duke and Loyola, but Syracuse should outclass them in this one. However it should be far more entertaining than the previous couple of games. Pending another asininely hot goalie, this one should be a good win for Syracuse, and a little more comfortable at the half than the previous few.

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Just Thinkin' About Lacrosse

There's been a lot of conversation lately regarding two subjects:
  1. The segregation of Duke, Maryland, North Carolina, Syracuse, and Virginia from the rest of the lacrosse field; and
  2. Whether Johns Hopkins, if it attains a .500 overall record, is worthy of an NCAA tournament bid.

The first consideration is fairly settled; the only debate surrounding the segregation of the above-referenced five teams from the rest of the field is whether there is a second segregation at the top of the class consisting of only Syracuse and Virginia.

The second consideration -- whether Johns Hopkins is worth more than a damn -- seems to be a debate that generally takes the following form:

Johns Hopkins Fan: If the Blue Jays get to .500, they deserve to be in the field. Their record may not show it, but they can play with anyone in the country.

A Reasonable Person: Shut up.

As I have neither the time or inclination to watch over 60 already-played lacrosse games to draw some conclusions as to all of the above-illustrated clubs, I've decided to let the numbers tell the story. As you may or may not remember, I've adapted some of Dean Oliver's tempo-free principles to lacrosse. It wouldn't be a terrible idea to take a look at that essay before continuing with this rambling mess.

As we approach the tournament, there remain three constants that provide strong indicia of a future champion and one that may or may not impact the game itself, but certainly impacts the watchability of game:

  • Tempo/Pace (Possessions per game: Hey, if you're going to watch the game, it better be interesting, right?);
  • Offensive Efficiency: (Goals per offensive possession: When you get the bean, are you canning it?)
  • Defensive Efficiency: (Goals against per defensive possession: When the opponent gets the bean, are you denying opportunities?);
  • Efficiency Margin: (Offensive efficiency less defensive efficiency: Overall efficiency; you need to be the best on both ends of the field).

Those are the touchstones. Following these annotated items are some miscellaneous considerations that are important, but not as important as the touchstones. I'll list only the leader, the loser, and Syracuse for these miscellaneous items.

Ready? Go.


3North Carolina69.15
5Johns Hopkins65.83

This shouldn't be too much of a surprise. Year-in and year-out, Syracuse is among the fastest teams in the country. What is a little surprising, however, is that Virginia registers seven fewer possessions than Syracuse a game. Dom Starsia has, supposedly, been preaching transition again this year and those covering the game have echoed this sentiment. The fact of the matter is, however, that Virginia just isn't playing all that quick this year.

This fact, though, doesn't appear to carry to much weight in the first instance. Virginia is 13-1 and has been tested all of twice this year (against Syracuse and the loss to Duke). The question remains, however, that if a fully-manned Syracuse team meets Virginia again, will the Orange's tempo wear out the Cavaliers? Remember: When Syracuse traveled to Virginia at the beginning of the season the Orange wasn't at full strength. Does a complete lineup (and a high octane pace) erase Virginia's one-goal advantage?

Honestly, I don't know. I can't see into the future, mostly because that is impossible.

Oh, and on Johns Hopkins: Ugly uniforms, boring lacrosse. Well done, Baltimore.

Offensive Efficiency

4Johns Hopkins.3213
5North Carolina.3171

This is where I don't think that Syracuse's pace ultimately impacts Virginia. The Cavaliers' offensive force is significant. The Brattons, Stanwick, Bocklet, Carroll . . . this is an incredibly dangerous and diverse offensive look. And the numbers prove out the fear: Virginia, when it has opportunities, is converting.

That isn't good for anyone (except Virginia; it's, like, really, really, really good for Virginia).

On the opposite end of the curve is Syracuse. I'm a little surprised that the Orange registered such a relatively low efficiency value. What's killing Syracuse is that only two of the examined schools have more offensive possessions than the Orange -- Duke and Virginia -- but Syracuse is knocking in fewer goals on these possessions. Some of that is attributable to turnovers after establishing possession (a constant area of concern over the last few weeks), and sloppiness is efficiency's kryptonite. Then again, when you play as fast as Syracuse does, some sloppiness is to be expected.

It's a give and take: Play fast and lose some offensive efficiency. John Desko appears to have accepted this fate and is willing to ride with it. If things go south, though, it's fairly easy to identify the Orange's potential Achilles' Heel.

Oh, and Johns Hopkins: Wha-what?!? It just goes to show you: Numbers sometimes lie (unless they don't).

Defensive Efficiency

2North Carolina.2165
6Johns Hopkins.2843

If you're looking for a supportive argument for Joel White's Tewaaraton candidacy, you need not look any farther. It's no coincidence that Syracuse is ranked first in defensive efficiency and tempo. Joel White is the cog that keeps the Orange machine running.

Plus, you know, John Galloway is really fucking good.

There are three additional takeaways from this data:

  1. As good as Virginia is on offense compared to Syracuse, Syracuse is significantly better than Virginia on defense. Once again, if Syracuse is full-strength with, say, John Lade, does the Orange even have a number in the right-hand column?
  2. Youth on defense is suicide. Johns Hopkins is, unsurprisingly, the worst defensive club on the board. Some will blame this on Gvozden, but a goalie a defense does not make.
  3. Outside of the Blue Jays, is there a more vanilla team from the cohort than Maryland? Impossibly slow pace, relatively weak defense, and the offense converts (when it eventually shoots). It's just a slow death when you play the Terrapins. My advice? Nap until the last four minutes and watch the final possession.

Efficiency Margin

1North Carolina.1006
6Johns Hopkins.0370

Let's be serious: North Carolina isn't the best team in the country. This is kind of where the numbers don't match reality. What is important to note, though, is that North Carolina and Duke should be considered in the conversation with Virginia and Syracuse. The Tar Heels and the Blue Devils are legitimate title contenders. All four clubs are working well on both ends of the field, albeit in different fashions. This should yield an interesting May from a fan perspective.

Oh, and Johns Hopkins: Yeah, no where near the top contenders. Egad.

Penalties per possession

1. Maryland
3. Syracuse
6. Johns Hopkins

Not only do you have to watch Maryland slog through a lacrosse game, you also get to see the Terps slow down the game with penalties given.

And Johns Hopkins has the officials in their pockets.

Shots per possession

1. Virginia
4. Syracuse
6. Johns Hopkins

Virginia Lacrosse 2010: "Keep firing, assholes!"

Also, there may be some truth to the whole "Pietramala micromanages the Johns Hopkins offense" meme.

Shots per possession margin

1. North Carolina
2. Syracuse
6. Johns Hopkins

Fun fact: Johns Hopkins is getting outshot by its opponents on a possession basis. Another fun fact: Even Air Force (Air Force!) is outshooting its opponents on a possession basis. That is truly pathetic.

Assist Rate

1. Duke
5. Syracuse
6. Johns Hopkins

Have you noticed the trend yet? No? Let me point it out to you: Johns Hopkins is terrible and nowhere near the types of clubs that will be competing for a national championship this year.

I'm not too worried about Syracuse's position here. Daniello is coming on strong providing helpers from the "x," so this situation should resolve itself.

2010 SOB Awards - Best Senior

Day 2 of the SOB's continue.

Welcome back to the SOB Awards, presented by your favorite members of the elite group known as the Syracuse Blogosphere. If you missed any of Day 1, check out yesterday's results here. Thanks to the Idiots for starting today off with the presentation of the Best Photo from the year. Now we venture on and present the Best Senior.

While some of these categories are highly contensious, this is not one of them. With all 12 of the votes from the panel, the far and away best senior this year was…
Andy Rautins

Since we all voted for him I’ll just go down the line.

Sean of Nunes/Magician: Andy Rautins - Andy Rautins the senior must look at Andy Rautins the freshman and wonder who that guy was. Once just a three-ball specialist, Rautins emerged this year as a team leader on and off the court. This was Andy's team.

Brian of CuseOrange: Andy Rautins - shed his rep as merely a three-point shooter and son of Leo Rautins (though broadcasters nationwide will contend otherwise) and improved his game more than about anyone I've seen who stayed at SU for four years...ok, five. Whatever. He's already planned for a fallback career as a hair model in case the NBA doesn't pan out for him.

Matt Glaude of Hoya Suxa: Andy Rautins: He's no longer "Leo's Kid." The guy could father 20 kids out of wedlock and I'd still want to hug him for his dagger wielding. Plus, did you see that hair? I haven't seen follicle development like that in a long time.

Dan Lyons of Bleacher Report: Andy Rautins: Andy was the ultimate glue guy all year, while also being the team's second star. He was one of the best defensive guards in the nation and possibly the best at the top of Boeheim's zone ever, was a lights out shooter, an incredible passer, and provided the leadership a team needs from its seniors. I think Andy might have played his way into the draft this season.

Brian Harrison of Orange::44: Andy Rautins: When he was on, Andy was the best pure shooter in America. But his true value was in his passing abilities and his domination on the defensive end at the top of the 2-3 Zone. The improvement from last year to this year was astonishing as well.

Orange Chuck of The Big Orange Bloggers: Andy Rautins – I love AO and you could point out that his being injured may have cost this team a championship but Andy's leadership on the court offensively and defensively were impressive. I am glad both bled Orange (as often as they were injured, literally as well) and when AO played great, he was one of the best big men in the game but Andy was the spark plug they leaned on to help when it was needed.

Jameson Fleming of Bleacher Report: Andy Rautins: Did you know Leo was his father? Oh, you did? I guess I'll have to tell you something new about Andy then. After being an offensive liability ever year until this year (yes, his game was not on par with last year's offense), Rautins became this team's catalyst. While he rarely could create his own shot, he created so much for others, that the offense essentially ran through him. Not bad for a guy who was once considered a one-star recruit.

D.A. from The Orange Fizz: Gotta be Rautins, although far too often this season I yelled upon an off-balance three-point heave, "Nooooo Andy!... YES!" He sunk more "bad look" threes than anyone in SU history - and ended the season doing the same in the Butler game. But without him, SU's season would've ended in the first round.

Steve from CuseOrange: Andy Rautins. Just goes to show what hard work, mixed with talent can achieve. He was the most needed player on the team. Seemed to hit many of his 3s after opposing teams runs or as an exclamation point on our runs. No doubt we will miss him next year.

Josh from Cuse Country: Arinze was a rock but Rautins was the engine that made this team go. Strange to say it but his loss will probably be felt more keenly than Wes or Arinze next season. There was nobody else on the team that could do what Andy could.

Syracusan from Cuse Country: Leo's kid. We'll miss Andy more than we've missed any player in a long time. I'm going to spend a lot of energy rooting for him to somehow pull an NBA career out of thin air. I think he's capable, but he's going to need a lot of luck.

Andrew of The Three Idiots: Andy Rautins. He ditched the fauxhawk, but picked up an improved all around game. While he didn't put up gaudy scoring numbers all the time, he was the player teams game planned against and while he was prone to throwing a few balls into the stands, the Jamesville-Canadian made some spectacular passes this year. I'm really going to miss Andy.

So there you have it. Congratulations to Andy Rautins on a great senior season and many thanks from the Syracuse faithful. That wraps up my end of the SOB’s for 2009-2010, but the awards roll on. Tune to The Orange Fizz at 11:00AM EST for the winner of the Favorite Moment of the Season. And once again check out Nunes/Magician at the end of the day for all the final results from this madness known as the Syracuse Orange Blogger Awards. We’ll see you next year. Thanks to Sean for organizing them again and special thanks to the members of the panel for the great work.

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2010 SOB Awards - Best Syracuse Blog/Fan Video

It's that time again.

It’s that time again. Welcome to the 2010 SOB’s. Thanks to Cuse Country we know the previous winner. I’ll be your host for this hour as we take a look at the category of Best Syracuse Blog/Fan Video. There were a lot of great videos this year made by the various Syracuse blogs and fans out there, but we take a look at the ones that garnered the most votes from our esteemed panel. First with the losers, or if you prefer, non-winners.

Fourth Place

Brian from CuseOrange picked “The Offering” by our friend Sean at Nunes/Magician.

Third Place

D.A. from The Orange Fizz picked another of Sean’s videos. “Keely's Syracuse Preacher Boy. So intense. I yelled like that when DC missed the free throws.”

Second Place

This one received four votes and it comes from our good friend Matt “The GlaudeGlaude from Hoya Suxa.

Sean from Nunes/Magician: Destroying the Hoya - simple yet elegant. Just like Glaude.

Syracusan from Cuse Country: Anything from Glaude. I can’t even pick.

Steve of CuseOrange: The Glaude's focused hate at its finest. DaVinci quality smack.

Josh from Cuse Country: Hoya Destroya! by Hoya Suxa.

And now, The Winner of the 2010 SOB Award for Best Syracuse Blog/Fan Video goes to..

Glaude again, from Hoya Suxa for his riveting dancing and celebration of Syracuse’s demolishing of Georgetown at the hands of the Orange in the Carrier Dome. He received five votes.

Dan Lyons of Bleacher Report: Hoya Suxa's epic dancing.

Brian Harrison of Orange::44: Glaude had some gems, but the celebration of the Georgetown victory was the best.

Orange Chuck of The Big Orange Bloggers: Hoya Suxa victory dance after the Jan. 25 SU win over Georgetown though thankfully I have a weak stomach so missed his last one following the BET loss.

Jameson Fleming of Bleacher Report: I haven't laughed this hard in awhile.

And finally Andrew of The Three Idiots agreed with me: What Harrison said, that's the best.

So there you have it. The winner of the Best Blog/Fan Video is Hoya Suxa. Congratulations to him and that must mean he’s now chugging three finger’s worth of his favorite adult beverage and taking pantless photos. Kudos to him. The SOB’s roll on with Jameson’s presentation of the Best Sophomore of the year over Jameson's Bleacher Report page at 6:00pm EST. Check it out. I’ll see you back here tomorrow morning at 10:00AM EST for the presentation of the Best Senior. As always, check out Nunes/Magician for today’s results.

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Lacrosse Weekly - 4/22/10

Another Big East foe goes down at the hands of Syracuse.

After a busy week of lacrosse which showcased Syracuse destroying Princeton in the New Meadowlands Stadium on Saturday, and the Orange winning at Cornell on a last second goal to pull off another big win on a Tuesday night, Syracuse then played a Sunday evening tilt in New Jersey against Big East foe Rutgers. Finishing a three game road stint, Syracuse did not disappoint. It was a slow start, but Syracuse scored the first six goals of the game, as the SU defense led the way for the victory. Syracuse earns another conference victory in a win over Rutgers 11 to five.

Syracuse started the scoring, but were held scoreless in the first quarter for this first time this season. Syracuse scored two goals in the second quarter to take the game to the half up 2-0. This was a sloppy game with some bad passes and rushed shots, but both teams showed excellent defense in the first half which was really the reason for the low scoring. Then Syracuse opened up the scoring in the third quarter with four goals in a row. Syracuse held Rutgers scoreless for almost 41 minutes before they finally got on the board at the 4:18 mark of the third quarter to make it 6-1 Syracuse. It was 7-2 Syracuse when the game entered the fourth quarter, where Rutgers got on the board within a minute. However SU would end up winning the quarter, scoring four total, while Rutgers only added three to make the final 11-5.

Chris Daniello was the leading scorer for the Orange, earning four goals and two assists for a total of six points. Both the goal total and points total are career bests for Daniello who may have capped off the best week of his career after earning the game winner at Cornell on Tuesday. Both Cody Jamieson and Tim Desko added two a piece, including another crazy highlight shot from Desko falling away from the goal and a no look scoop shot. Joel White was another groundball machine, picking up six, but so did Brian Megill. Jeremy Thompson was 5-9 at the X, while Gavin Jenkinson was less successful, winning 3-8. Josh Knight was 0-1. Finally, John Galloway played much better than he did at Cornell, but so did his defense. He did make seven saves and allowed five goals. A very good day overall.

Syracuse once again owned the shot category, taking 36, while Rutgers only shot 25 times. SU also earned more groundballs with 31, while Rutgers had 27. Rutgers actually bested the Orange at the faceoff X, winning 10-18, while Syracuse only won eight. Both teams cleared the ball well with Syracuse clearing 23-26, and Rutgers clearing 14-16. Also, both teams were even on extra-man opportunities, going 1-4. Syracuse had seven saves total, while Rutgers had 14. Finally Syracuse had 18 points, but Rutgers had 26 due to Syracuse’s tough defense. The complete box score can be found here.

Syracuse played well in this game in the second half, but looked clearly out of rhythm in the first half. They had trouble passing the ball crisply and seemed to force some passes inside as well as taking some low percentage shots on the cage in the early goings. Additionally both teams turned the ball over, and Rutgers really slowed the pace of the game, so there was obviously not going to be that many scores anyway. But Syracuse found minimal success in the second quarter and adjusted the game plan at the half to go on a four goal run. Additionally the best defense in the nation shined against Rutgers. They took far less shots and had trouble getting open looks or even open passes. Big tip of the hat to Rutgers’ goalie Billy Olin though, as he played an excellent game and held Syracuse scoreless in the first quarter, which no team had been able to do all year. Additionally he played at my high school in Horseheads, NY, so good for the local product playing well. I just wish he ended up somewhere better than Rutgers.

Virginia lost to Duke this week, therefore Syracuse regains the top spot in both polls, replacing Virginia at #1 in the Inside Lacrosse Media Poll, as well as the Coaches Poll. Now there are no more undefeated teams in the polls. Virginia is #2 in both polls, while North Carolina is #3.

Lots of good lacrosse this past week since we last checked in the scores as this is one of the best times of year for lacrosse as the battle for auto-bids and conference championships heat up. Notable scores are below, with contests involving Big East members are in italics.

Tuesday April 13:

Yale 7 – Providence 5

Rutgers 8 – Princeton 10

Hobart 7 – Canisius 8 in OT

Saturday April 17:

Providence 3 – Notre Dame 11

Georgetown 6 – Loyola 11

North Carolina 17 – Robert Morris 14

Dartmouth 2 – Princeton 16

Denver 10 – Ohio State 9

Massachusetts 6 – Delaware 9

Yale 14 – Brown 11

Fairfield 4 – Air Force 3

Army 7 – Navy 6

Maryland 10 – Johns Hopkins 9

Stony Brook 17 – Binghamton 16

St. John’s 10 – Villanova 12

Hofstra 10 – Penn State 11 in OT

Drexel 7 – Towson 8

Duke 13 – Virginia 9

Tuesday April 20:

Providence 7 – Brown 14

Army 15 – Lafayette 14

Villanova 14 – Lehigh 15 in OT

The complete Inside Lacrosse scoreboard can be found here.

Now let’s take a look at the Big East standings as they currently sit:

1. #1 Syracuse 10-1 (3-0)

2. #13/10 Georgetown 7-4 (3-1)

3. #9 Villanova 8-4 (2-1)

4. St. John’s 5-6 (2-2)

5. Rutgers 5-6 (1-2)

6. ARV/ARV Notre Dame 6-5 (1-3)

7. Providence 0-11 (0-3)

#1 Syracuse (10-1, 3-0) will next take on lowly Providence (0-11, 0-3) in the Carrier Dome this Saturday at 2:00pm. This should be a blood bath bigger than probably any other game on the schedule. No way Providence pulls this upset. It should promise to be a scoring barrage for the Orange however. We’ll be back next week as there are only three games left in Syracuse’s season and Selection Sunday looms on May 9th. Syracuse will try to play for that #1 seed.

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People vs. Delone Carter

The scales are empty but they are already tipped.
By now I'm sure you've heard that Delone Carter, the star running back on the Syracuse University football team, has been charged with Assault. What does that mean? How does the process move forward from here? What are the possible outcomes? I'm here to answer all your legal questions. Brian could too, but I vetoed him since I have a few years experience over him.
DC3 was charged with Assault in the third degree, a class A misdemeanor in New York. That carries a maximum sentence of one year in jail, $1000 fine, and state-mandated surcharges (hey, NY is struggling, and tries to make money through criminal activity). Sentencing authority is ultimately in the hands of the judge, who could give less or no jail, less or no fine, three years of probation, or a conditional discharge. In New York, a person is guilty of assault in the third degree when, with intent to cause physical injury to another person, he causes such injury to such person or to a third person. There are also other subsections of assault dealing with different levels of intent (i.e. recklessly causing physical injury, or using a deadly weapon or deadly instrument to criminally negligently cause physical injury) but based on what I've read, those don't apply to DC3.
So, let's break this down. "Intent to cause physical injury." Intent is, simply, one's conscious objective. In other words, if you're standing face to face with someone, bring a fist back, and throw it forward toward the other person's face, you're acting with intent. Physical injury could be swelling, substantial pain, etc. Something more than an inconvenient slap across the face, but less than disfigurement, loss of limb, etc. Information released by the Syracuse police accuses Carter of swinging one punch to the complaining witness (I use that instead of victim, because victim implies that this actually happened and does not accurately preserve Carter's presumption of innocence) who fell to the ground and hit his head. He was treated for facial injuries.
Depending on the severity of the injuries, it would seem as though, if true, Carter is in a bind. But, what possible defenses might he have? Probably the most common defense (beyond "I wasn't there" or "I was there but didn't do it") would be the defense of justification, more commonly known as self-defense. This is a simple theory that you can use physical force upon another person if you reasonably believe it is necessary to protect yourself from what you reasonably believe to be the use or imminent use of physical force by that individual. Yeah, that's pretty loaded, I know. But it's good, because it gives him a lot of leeway for argument. The facts seem to indicate that this whole incident began with Carter riding by in a car and that car being hit by a snowball thrown from a group of students outside Kimmel Food Court. According to Carter's lawyer, when a couple players got out of the car, one of them was hit by another snowball and threw a punch. Assuming this person was Carter, he could very easily argue that he had been attacked by snowballs and that, because of the group of people and their not letting down on throwing snowballs, he reasonably believed he needed to use physical force to protect himself. My first jury trial as a public defender was an assault case where we used a justification defense, and we won; juries can identify with the justification defense better than probably any other defense.
Carter's attorney also indicates that he had prior conversations with the detectives at the Syracuse Police Department concerning this incident and had made known to them in no uncertain terms that he was representing Carter and did not want them speaking to Carter. If this is the case, then his warrantless detention and questioning by detectives could be cause for concern. Any statements taken by Carter -- oral or written -- could be suppressed from being presented at trial, having been taken from him in violation of his right to counsel (protected by both the NY Constitution and the US Constitution). However, my guess is that, like in most other cases, there would be enough evidence for the prosecution to go forward, even in the absence of an admissible statement by Carter.
Reports indicate that Carter was given an appearance ticket and released. This means that he must appear in Court on the date and time on his ticket, for a formal arraignment on the charge. At the arraignment, he could be forced to post bail or released on his own recognizance (which means he doesn't post bail and promises to make it back to all future court appearances). Given his status as a student with strong ties to the area, I would assume he'd get the ROR.
From there, his attorney would file motions with the Court and demands for discovery from the prosecutor (information about the crime and evidence gathered). His attorney would also negotiate with the District Attorney's Office on possible dispositions of the matter. Here are all the possible dispositions I can think of:
  • Proceed to a jury trial (in this case, a jury of six)
  • Proceed to a bench trial (where the judge acts as judge and jury)
  • Plead guilty to assault with an agreed-upon sentence (which most likely would not include jail, but rather a fine and surcharges)
  • Plead guilty to Harassment 2nd degree or Disorderly Conduct, in satisfaction of the assault charge. Harassment and DisCon are violations, which are not crimes like misdemeanors and felonies, and carry maximum penalties of 15 days in jail and $250 fine.
  • Adjournment in contemplation of dismissal. This means that the matter would be adjourned for six months with no finding or admission of guilt, and he likely would be required to complete community service and otherwise stay out of trouble during the six months. At the end of the six months, the charge would automatically be dismissed.
  • Dismissal of the charge.

What do I think will happen? It's probably too early to give an accurate guess. But if I had to, my gut feeling is that he's offered a deal to plea to Harassment or DisCon, with a sentence of a couple hundred dollars in fines, and restitution to pay any hospital bills the complaining witness may have incurred. What determines what the prosecutor will offer as a plea deal? Generally it's dependent on the facts of the crime alleged, the strength of the case, and the criminal history of the defendant.

Of course, we are all most concerned with what impact this has on Delone Carter, the football player. As you all probably know, the SU Judicial Board can and will act independently of the criminal justice system. Especially since this was a student vs. student altercation occuring on campus, I would not be surprised if Carter is suspended by the school. Then, even separate from that, Doug Marrone could suspend him from the team. But I'll let that all play itself out.

In the meantime, stay tuned to Orange::44 for the latest legal analysis on this situation as it develops.

BH On The Block Again

Had to talk about that game with Axe.

After that ridiculous ending to the Syracuse/Cornell game Brent Axe of "On The Block" fame had me on his show to discuss the game. We also talked about some SU football, Wes going pro, and our glorious five year anniversary. Next time we'll have dancing I promise. Either way, if you missed it, you can listen to the clip or download the podcast here. Check it out because it is quality as always.

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Lacrosse Weekly 4/15/10

Happy to see another dramatic Syracuse victory over the Big Red.

Cornell must really hate Syracuse at this point. They just cannot seem to win against the Orange. Not only that, but for the past two games they have lost in dramatic, almost unbelievable fashions. The Big Red had a shot in this game, much like in Foxboro last season, and again come up just short. Syracuse pulls one out with a buzzer beater in Ithaca under the lights eight to seven.

Syracuse started out the game getting on the board first. Then Cornell tied it up to conclude the scoring in the first. The second quarter saw one more SU goal before Cornell took the lead with two goals, heading to the half up 3-2. Syracuse was still down 5-4 after the third quarter and both teams added a pair of goals. Syracuse never seemed to gain traction through the game. Cornell scored to open the fourth quarter, but Syracuse scored to cut the lead to one again. Then in another minute Cornell scored again to go up two with just over nine minutes to go in the game. Syracuse then scored two more to tie the game up with 4:59 to go. Syracuse won the faceoff and had some good shots at the cage but ended up turning the ball over. Cornell took a time out with just over two minutes remaining. The way Cornell had been shooting it could have easily been over for Syracuse. With under a minute remaining John Lade jarred the ball loose and Joel White picked up the ball, avoiding several defenders cradling one handed and spinning across midfield to get the ball into Cornell territory. With only a few seconds left Cody Jamieson made a great move to the cage and was stopped point blank by Cornell goalie AJ Fiore but the rebound bounced free. Chris Daniello ended up with the ball and nailing a shot five yards out at the buzzer to give Syracuse the win.

I cannot say enough about how good AJ Fiore played. He had 20 saves in this game, a career best. He stopped Cody Jamieson several times point blank and he is one of the best finishers in the game. Unfortunately he chucked the ball out a few times due to Syracuse’s ride. But really the trouble in this game was turnovers and bad passing. Syracuse coughed up the ball way too much and against a Virginia for example, we would have really been in trouble. Additionally it seemed that John Galloway was not seeing the ball well as he really did not have a good game. Also on a few occasions it seemed as though the Syracuse defense was asleep at the switch. But all of that is overshadowed by the Daniello goal to end the game, as well as the stellar play of Joel White and the SU clearing game. In the end, and the way the came back form two goals down, as well as not allowing Cornell to get much more distance between them in the score, this is a good performance from Syracuse when the game was on the line. And yes, I do think the goal should have counted. From seeing it on TWCS via my DVR you can see the net move and the clock tick down to zero, then the horn. Goaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaal!

Chris Damiello was the leading scorer for Syracuse. He finished with three goals in the game. Cody Jamieson finished with two goals and one assist. Joel White had nine groundballs in this game, giving Syracuse a huge edge to try and come back in this game. Jovan Miller also had eight groundballs. Both of them really played well in this game from the midfield especially after faceoffs. Jeremy Thompson won 7-9 from the X, while Gavin Jenkinson won 5-9. Finally Galloway had eight saves and seven goals against in this game.

Syracuse really bested Cornell in almost all the statistics in this game. Cornell had 20 shots, while Syracuse doubled that with 40. Syracuse picked up 45 groundballs, but Cornell only picked up 25 in this sloppy game. The Orange won 12 of 18 faceoffs, while Cornell only won six. Syracuse cleared the ball well, clearing 16-17, but Cornell fared worse only clearing 17-24. Cornell was unable to capitalize on extra-man opportunities as they only converted 1-3, while Syracuse converted 2-2. Once again Syracuse had eight saves, while Cornell had 20. Finally Syracuse had 19 turnovers, while Cornell had 22. The complete box score can be found here.

Since we had a Lacrosse Weekly on Tuesday we’ll hold off on the poll information since there is no change, as well as the scoreboard and Big East standings as not much has changed between then and now. This was all about Syracuse pulling off another great comeback win against Cornell. You have to think Jeff Tambroni just does not want to play Syracuse anymore. This is four in a row against the Big Red, and after robbing them twice in a row it has to sting. Now with four games left on the schedule for Syracuse before the NCAA Tournament (for which they are now a virtual lock for), it is all Big East from here on out. Interestingly enough, it is a fairly easy road for Syracuse. They will next take on a decent Rutgers team in New Brunswick on Sunday at 6:00pm on ESPN U. Rutgers is 5-5 on the year, but Rutgers gave Princeton a game this past week so it could not be a roll for Syracuse. Either way, it should be another entertaining affair.


Troy Nunes Is An Absolute Podcast Episode 7

After a small hiatus, we're back.
We've taken a few weeks off, but the Big City Classic, along with the news of Wes Johnson turning pro gave us the great opportunity to have our seventh episode. Sean from Troy Nunes is an Absolute Magician and I talk about those things, along with The Glaude's lack of pants, the New Meadowlands Stadium, attractive Syracuse quarterbacks (no homo), the state of NCAA Division 1 Lacrosse, and other awesome topics. Give it a listen below. Or download the episode here, or any of the past episodes. You can also do so anytime by checking out the bottom of of the sidebar. Enjoy!

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Another big stage for a big game.

A brand new NFL stadium was the scene on Saturday in which #3 Syracuse took on #5/4 Princeton. Most people thought that Syracuse would perform well as the revenge factor was high in the Meadowlands, but no one could have predicted the sheer dominance that Syracuse showed against the Tigers. John Galloway was brilliant in the cage, Syracuse’s offense was outstanding, and the defense was stifling. Syracuse declared the New Meadowlands is now open! They win a big one 13 to four.

The short story is that Syracuse scored a lot and Princeton did not. Syracuse scored twice in the first quarter, the only team to do so. Princeton struck first in the second quarter and then each team added one a piece bringing the score to 3-2 Syracuse. But then the Orange went on a four goal run to go to the locker room at the half up 7-2. The third quarter was all Syracuse again, as they scored five more goals, including one with one second remaining on the clock. Three were made by Cody Jamieson in a row as well. Princeton won the fourth quarter scoring two to Syracuse’s one goal, but by then it was far too late, and it was Al Cavalieri in goal.

The leading scorer in the game was Cody Jamieson with four goals and an assist for five points. Again he got three in a row in the third quarter. Freshman JoJo Marasco also added three goals. Seven players scored on the 13 goals for Syracuse. Josh Amidon led Syracuse with two assists in the game and also had a goal. Jeremy Thompson, Chris Daniello, and Joel White tied for most groundballs with four each. Jeremy Thompson was again fantastic at the X, winning five of six faceoffs. He was fantastic in spurring on the Syracuse scoring, especially in the third quarter. He also had one goal and an assist. Gavin Jenkinson faired not as well, going 3-7. Josh Knight was 0-4 and Kyle Carey was 0-1. Finally John Galloway made 11 saves and only had one goal against playing just under 50 minutes, while Al Cavalieri allowed three goals and had two saves. Galloway of course got the win, going 8-1 on the year.

Princeton shot the ball 30 times in this game and only connected 4 times, while Syracuse shot the ball 38 times in the game. Syracuse also led the groundball game, picking up 37 while Princeton had 27. Syracuse won 10-18 faceoffs, while Princeton won eight. The Tigers cleared 10-13, while Syracuse cleared 18-20. Nether team did well with extra man opportunities, but Syracuse fared a bit better. SU converted 2-7, while Princeton converted 1-9. Syracuse had 13 saves total, while Princeton had 12. Finally Princeton had 19 turnovers, while Syracuse had 16. The complete box score can be found here.

Syracuse played an extremely good game. John Galloway played extremely well, but he was backed up by an extremely sharp defensive unit. Princeton utilizes several pick and roll sets and Syracuse defended well and their slide packages prevented Princeton from getting good looks at the cage. On top of that, the midfield and attack units played well together as well. Thompson worked hard at the X and got a couple quick goals for Syracuse in this game through smart passing and the patented Syracuse transition game. Much like the SU Basketball team though, this Syracuse Lacrosse team is playing a bigger team game than they have in the past few years. In the last couple of years Syracuse has relied on big stars to carry most of the load, but this team is sharing the ball well and passing much smarter, giving a lot more open looks at the cage. They are playing great lacrosse and getting better every game. Here were my photos from the day.

Syracuse has jumped in both polls due to Syracuse dismantling Princeton and #1 Princeton topping #2 North Carolina. Syracuse is now #2 in both the Inside Lacrosse Media Poll and the Coaches Poll. Virginia of course remains on top, earning all first place votes in both polls. UNC drops to #3 in both polls, while Maryland is #4.

Great lacrosse this past weekend. Notable scores are below, with games involving Big East Conference members in italics.

Wednesday April 7:

Siena 9 – Binghamton 9 in OT

Mount St. Mary 6 – Georgetown 11

UMBC 7 – Towson 10

Friday April 9:

Quinnipiac 8 – Air Force 6

Bellarmine 8 – Denver 12

Saturday April 10:

Navy 9 – Maryland 11

Rutgers 10 – Jacksonville 17

Ohio State 14 – Hobart 6

Towson 10 – Massachusetts 9

Delaware 11 – Hofstra 12

Providence 5 – St. John’s 13

Albany 7 – Johns Hopkins 19

Harvard 12 – Cornell 13

North Carolina 5 – Virginia 7

UMBC 12 – Binghamton 6

Villanova 14 – Manhattan 6

Army 7 – Bucknell 6 in OT

Sunday April 11:

Notre Dame 8 – Georgetown 11

Quinnipiac 10 – Denver 14

Vermont 4 – Albany 9

Bellarmine 11 – Air Force 10

The complete Inside Lacrosse scoreboard can be found here.

As always (this year) we take a look at the current Big East standings:

1. #2 Syracuse 8-1 (2-0)

2. #8/9 Georgetown 7-3 (3-1)

3. St. John’s 5-5 (2-1)

4. #13 Villanova 7-3 (1-1)

5. Rutgers 5-4 (1-1)

6. Providence 0-8 (0-2)

7. NR/ARV Notre Dame 5-5 (0-3)

#2 Syracuse (8-1) now takes on #9/10 Cornell (8-2) in Ithaca in a rematch of the NCAA Championship last season tonight. This is the first time the teams are meeting since that epic game in which Syracuse snatched a championship from Cornell in overtime. This should be another classic match versus two Upstate New York rivals. I’ll be in attendance and we’ll be back with another installment of Lacrosse Weekly to wrap it up.

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Lacrosse Weekly... Next Week.

Yeah, this team was great.
Syracuse played Albany on Saturday and won in the Carrier Dome 15-8. I didn't see most of the game because of the Final Four later that day, but Syracuse played well against the vastly inferior Albany. Syracuse is #3 in the country and will face #4/5 Princeton this Saturday at 6:30 from the new Meadowlands in the Big City Classic. The game will also be on ESPN U. It should be a great day and Princeton v. Syracuse is always a classic match of two great rivals. Should be a good one.
In other news, the fine folks at 4th & Forever are Syracuse fans and they have a couple really nice SU related shirts. The one above is currently on sale for the very special price of $10.44. You can purchase one here. They are really Syracuse fans I promise. Do yourself a favor and pick one up.
I'm heading to New York to watch the game live (and of course tailgate), but we'll be back next week with a recap of the big game on Saturday, coverage of Syracuse's lacrosse game on Tuesday evening as they take on Cornell in Ithaca, NY, and also a final look back at the 2009-2010 Syracuse Basketball Season. Good stuff ahead. Great lacrosse ahead.


Looking Back on 5 Years

Five years, still no name on the header.
It is no small feat. Considering that this is the internet age of “what have you done for me lately” and the pursuit for the latest and coolest thing, anything lasting online past a year is probably a fairly big deal now. Yet we here at Orange::44 have endured. Not only that, but it has seen a complete turnover at the top, which seems kind of stupid for something as trivial as a sports blog dedicated to Syracuse University Athletics. Yet it happened. Because it has been five years we just can’t gloss over it.

“The Glaude”, Matt Glaude to be exact (now at Hoya Suxa), started this whole internet affair back on March 12th of 2005. Seems like forever ago at this point. I was in the home stretch of my senior year at Syracuse, loving life as the basketball team was cruising with Gerry McNamara and Hakim Warrick rolling through the Big East. Then the Catamounts ruined my March, and the first part of my April as well. Gus Johnson just HA HAAAAAA’ed all over my dream of a long NCAA Tournament run my senior year. I mention all of this for one reason, that a big part of me moving on with my senior year was Matt Glaude’s musings on the subject and Orange::44.

I met Matt my freshman year and I’d like to think we had a friendship based on mutual respect but I’m guessing he thought I was a dumb freshman and I knew him as a cool senior who had his act together. Every so often he’d come back and I’d see him and we’d talk but it wasn’t anything earth shattering. Then he started this notebook. I read it often, and often I laughed my ass off. Then he put out an open call to write for Orange::44. In April of 2006 since I still lived in Syracuse at the time I figured what the hell, I’ll write for this blog thing, whatever a blog was. I joined up with a couple other people and somehow I was the one to last. It’s especially interesting since I was probably the least funny one and I’m also guessing I had the worst grammar at the time.

I eventually went off to law school, so the grammar got better. Syracuse eventually got worse at a lot of things, so I got bitter. Somehow Matt let me keep going. I eventually wrote more and more and he wrote less. Finally one day he wanted to scrap the whole thing and I wanted to keep going so instead of moving on to something else, I asked him if I could take over this site. He agreed. He moved on to speak of the evils of Georgetown and I kept going here. Since November of 2007 I’ve been at the helm of this thing and it’s been pretty great. Occasionally I’ve enlisted my good friend John Brennan to write some things, but it’s mostly been me plugging along.

Rarely do you go five years without some pretty notable memories from your time doing something. Because of this blog I’ve been interviewed by Brent Axe on The Score 1260 in Syracuse, Matt McClusky on WNER 1410 in Watertown, and yes even The Daily Orange. I’ve stirred some stuff up on occasion, and had a dust up with a certain former beat writer. And in between we’ve seen some extraordinary moments in Syracuse sports including a six overtime game win over a rival, a big time win over Rutgers in football last year, and a game tying goal with four seconds left in the National Championship, to go on and win two back to back.

But it isn’t just games we write about. Over the long history of Orange::44 and the over 1,100 articles published we have covered a lot of topics. They range from coaching changes, uniform changes, curling, the National Spelling Bee, various tragedies, holidays, Big East Tournaments, campus projects, campus events, television and movie references, and other items of interest to Syracuse fans and alumni. I’ve discovered the joy in both the mundane moments, along with the spectacular and lucky ones.

Things have changed since we started. When this started Facebook was barely taking hold, no one used Twitter, and no one did videos or podcasts really. To “break news” I got a text message from someone in the know, and then went from there. While bloggers generally have a bad wrap for not being held accountable, we at Orange::44 tried to uphold a higher standard by always using our real names and providing general responses to critical feedback, as well as trying to confirm things we said that we were reporting to be facts as best we could. I hope that has been clear through the years. When we weren’t being ridiculous on purpose that is.

Because I’ve taken off a couple years from the celebration of the anniversary of this notebook I’d be remiss if I didn’t point out some of my favorite articles over the past two years. I pointed out some of the best from our first two years here, and celebrated our third birthday here, but we’ve done a lot since then.

Coaching Rumor of Interest
This article blew up my blog for a while and got me intertwined by Donnie Webb, the former football beat writer for the Post-Standard. It resulted in my writing this open letter to him as well. I maintain I had enough sources at the time, and so did Brent Axe, who stated it on his show as well. Either way, it still remains one of the most commented item on this blog.

The Inaugural Big East Blogger Roundtable - 12/3/2008
While this isn’t an article, it was the first time we put several well known Big East Bloggers together in a roundtable online which was a really good time for all of us I think. I’ll have to do that again sometime I guess.

Sleep: That's Where I'm A Viking!
Part of our catalog here is occasionally just posting a picture with a small paragraph because the photo does most of the work. In this case a good friend of mine just happened to be in the right place at the right time to get a picture of a sleeping Greg Robinson leaving town after being fired. We’ll miss you for your press conferences and awesome sayings, but not for the coaching.

The Official Hoya Hater Certification Test
I may hate Connecticut with a burning passion, but even I know what rivalry pays the bills around here and for Syracuse fans. I developed a test for the big game in the Carrier Dome in February of 2009 to illustrate the pretenders from the true haters. I think it truly works. You be the judge.

The Glaude Dancing
This one isn’t even an article. It is our good friend Matt Glaude celebrating a Syracuse trouncing of Duke in the National Semi-final game in Boston in the 2009 NCAA Tournament. He was too busy dancing to the music to notice I snuck in the filming. Here’s hoping he does the same in a parking lot in Baltimore in May. A moment of true jubilation… and booze.

Troy Nunes Is A Podcast Magician
Sean from Troy Nunes is an Absolute Magician and I had been doing a back and forth Q&A for a long time. Then we decided to try it in podcast form. From the comments we’ve gotten you loyal readers seem to enjoy it as well. Frankly I am not quire sure that many other people could just yammer on for around 45 minutes on a somewhat regular basis about Syracuse like we do. We do it so you don’t have to.

Carrier Dome Beer Public Service Announcement
Orange::44 Correspondent John Brennan and I look good in suits. We also both have law degrees. I guess that’s why it seemed natural to stage our own video in the wake of the anti-wave video the SU Blogosphere took part in. The result was our video advocating that the Carrier Dome return to letting individuals purchase four beers at a time. It didn’t work, but hey Pat Campbell retired. It was clearly the public pressure we put on him.

Interview With Rich Kimball, Maine Play-By-Play Announcer
We are used to doing Q&A’s with lots of blogs around here. But it isn’t often we get to do one with a genuine professional. Rich Kimble, the radio man for the Maine football team was nice enough to respond to my questions. Hat tip to my good friend Chris Sedenka for setting it up for me.

The Tampa/DC Travelogues
Part of the attraction of blogs is getting a different experience than you would from reading the game recap in a paper. As much as I enjoy seeing games I also enjoy traveling. When they combine good fun is usually had. I traveled to Tampa to see Syracuse take on Florida and John traveled to DC to see Syracuse play Georgetown. Often the best stories happen around a game even if the game is great itself.

It was hard to pick some of my favorites, but that is just a small sampling of some of the momentous occasions over the past couple of years.

I do want to give some thanks and shoutouts as well. First and foremost I have to thank Matt. He issued his thoughts on starting this blog a couple of weeks ago here. It’s vintage Matt, as you are now used to at Hoya Suxa. He’s always been hilarious, but he’s also a really nice person, devastatingly funny, and very sharp. I’m grateful he had enough faith in my so-so writing abilities back then to let me come aboard and then take over. It was against most of his inclinations I’m sure. I also want to thank John Brennan. We were acquaintances in high school and became great friends and roommates at Syracuse. He’s become the person I bounce various blog ideas off of and usually the one I’m at a game with. I couldn’t have continued with Orange::44 without his occasional and vital help and for that, along with the time since 2001, its thanks. I have to give it up to Sean at Nunes/Magician who has become an excellent blogging ally and occasional partner in crime. It started with mutual respect, turned into a weekly back and forth, and now a podcast. But he really is the best around right now and I’d like to think that our blogs complement each other well. I’m glad he didn’t tell me to take a hike when I first e-mailed him. To the other SU bloggers out there a big thanks. I’m looking at you Idiots, Cuse Country, Jameson, Cuse Orange, The Fizz, Chuck, Poncho, and all the others that have come and gone. You fine folks make it fun to banter, argue, and write in our orange world. Keep it up folks. Big thanks to Axe and Matt Mc not only for having me on their programs but just being cool people. I’ve talked to Axe many times in person and electronicly and he never had to be nice to me, John, or our little blog but he is and we thank him for that. Same with Matt. He had me on his show for lacrosse in the beginning. Not exactly a giant ratings getter. Thanks for continuing to have me on. I look forward to the live broadcast from Baltimore in May. Thanks to all of the Twitter followers out there who follow me, respond, and interact. It continues to make things entertaining, just to have fun talking to people about sports and Syracuse things. Finally thank you to the readers of Orange::44. Your time is valuable and that you take even a minute out of any of your days to stop by our little notebook and read what the hell I have to think about something a trivial as a basketball game or a coaching change at Syracuse University is humbling and amazing. I never got into blogging for the recognition but it is certainly much appreciated. To anyone else that has stopped by or I may have forgot, thanks for joining us and thanks for making this blogging thing interesting. Finally, thanks to all the crying children out there. You keep us in business every football season.

I got into blogging because I was bored and wanted to be more creative. I never thought it would evolve to what it has become today; an almost daily occurrence in my life. Occasionally I need to step back but I have yet to run out of things to talk about or do in terms of this notebook so I don’t plan on stopping anytime soon. The original and continuing mission is to chronicle the daily disaster that is Syracuse University Athletics. We all know that isn’t stopping so neither will we. Another five years is too much to guarantee, but we’ll still be here, plugging along, doing it for free, advertisement free, and for little recognition or appreciation. That’s the way we like it. It’s a good time and a way to be creative and vent frustration. That’s all I ever wanted it to be. I’m grateful for all the extra that’s come along with that though. Thanks again for joining us here. UConn… you suck! Georgetown still sucks. And as always GO ORANGE!

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To Be Doug Marrone For A Day

Many of us received this in our inboxes today. Now, I'm no graphic artist or anything, but there are some things in this that bother me. Mainly the lack of graphics. It's a lot of words, like watching The Passion of the Christ. But maybe my biggest gripe with this is the multicolored blue block S. Over a blue background. I love blue as much as the next guy, but since when weren't our S's in orange?
Still, though, I'm a lawyer, and reading things is kinda my bag, so I took a gander. If I enter a contest, I could win prizes! But the contest requires submitting a video, which can only be two minutes and must include my name and hometown. OK, I guess that's fair. But it also has to say why I'm the biggest SU football fan. That's tough. The prizes would have to really be worth it. So let's check out the prizes, shall we?
Autographs and photos with the team. Well I guess that's cool if the next David Tyree or Dwight Freeney or Donovan McNabb or Marvin Harrison is on the current squad. Beyond that, you've lost me.
Be involved in one practice. What the hell does this mean? Run laps with the team? Participate in no-impact thud drills? Get water for Charley Loeb? Thanks, but no thanks.
Take a behind-the-scenes tour of the press box. OK, this has potential. But it's a press box. Could there actually be anything behind-the-scenes about it, other than it's otherwise off-limits to those without credentials?
Attend a team dinner. Now you're talking! I bet these guys can eat. Where are we going? Scotch & Sirloin? Chipotle? HCDM's house? I'm in!
Receive a customize. Huh? Is this a thing?
Authentic football jersey. I'm guessing this probably goes with the "receive a customize[d]" with the proper verb conjugation. I'll admit. This would be pretty sweet. A 44 jersey with BRENNAN across the top. You can't go wrong.
Stand along the sidelines of the Spring Game. So I don't even get to sit down? I don't consider this a "prize," per se.
Call one play at the Spring Game. Pooch punt on third down? Yeah, they'll never see that coming!
So, some of these prizes are kinda cool, and the rest are total duds. In a cost/benefit analysis, I've determined I don't have the time or the talent to make the winning video between now and noon on April 8. Therefore, I'm taking myself out of the running. But, I expect the winner to come forward and share his or her stories with us here at Orange::44.
In all seriousness, though, it is yet to be determined if I will attend this Spring football game, to be held at the Carrier Dome on Saturday, April 17, 2010 at 1:00pm. Free parking and free admission, so if you're in Syracuse with nothing better to do, you should go. If I find myself there, or watching on TV if it's televised, look for another Monday Morning Quarterback article.

Happy Easter!

Happy Easter from the folks at Orange::44, who remind you that the football season is only a few months away!

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About that Final Four...

I'm rooting for West Virginia. You probably should too.

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  • Air Your Grievances

  • This About Sums It Up

  • I am less smart for having read your blog.
  • - Anonymous Georgetown supporter.
  • You are an idiot...
  • - Anonymous Nunes/Magician Reader.
  • Congrats on not being very good at what you do.
  • - Anonymous ACC supporter.
  • You are a dweeb, my friend. Grow a backbone.
  • - Anonymous UConn supporter.
  • ...vacuous, asinine, and mind numbing...
  • - Anonymous commenter.
  • Honestly, just admit that you are pathetic...
  • - Anonymous commenter.
  • You just don't have hoops experience.
  • - Twitter commenter.
  • Leave the journalism to talented people. Brian is just another hack and another fair weather fan.
  • - Twitter commenter.
  • A bad blog about Syracuse athletics.
  • - UConn Fan on Twitter (after winning NCAA).