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The game was better. Not great but better.
A new offensive coordinator and a new starting QB was a recipe for a brutal viewing experience when facing the #1 team in the nation. But it actually wasn't so bad. And Syracuse covered the spread, if you're into being a degenerate gambler. Either way, there were some terrible things to watch, but mostly it was a good effort against a far superior team. FSU wins again 38-20.
Syracuse was 7/14 (50%) on third downs, earned 20 first downs overall, and they racked up 412 total yards. The fact that they scored a touchdown was a minor miracle. Red Zone issues continue for the Orange however. AJ Long (16/27, 167yds, 2 TD, 2 INT) had an average day, and there were a few throws that should have never been made. But I'd rather he make the mistakes against FSU than a team that is beatable. Could have been worse, but could have been better.
Granted this was Florida State, but there were some coverages that were blown. There were either miscommunications or just stupidity. Either way, the defense couldn't stop much of anything.
Special Teams
A muffed punt was recovered. AMAZING. Granted the offense threw it right back to the other team on the next play, but hey, it was a good play. Cole Murphy was perfect on the day with 2 XPs and 2 FGs with a long of 32 yards. Also Riley Dixon was solid again.
Good play calling and play calling that didn't hurt the team's chances of advancing the ball at a good rate. I liked the call to go for it near the goal line in the first half as well. It's FSU and the #1 team. If you want to upset them and you're within five yards of the goal line, why wouldn't you go for it? That's just smart, ESPN.
C+ (2.33)
Not a great game to see, but considering they were going against #1 and performed the way they did, it wasn't a bad effort. It was a nice scrimmage to get ready for Wake Forest this week.
Syracuse didn't have an awful outing. I'll take it for now. But this week against Wake Forest is a true test. Syracuse should be able to scrap out a win. If not, we have serious issues.

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