Syracuse Football: Pugh Returns, Thompson Done, Lemon & Diabate Honored

Sept 22, 2012; Minneapolis, MN, USA: Minnesota Golden Gophers wide receiver Derrick Engel (18) gets tackled by Syracuse Orange linebacker Siriki Diabate (18) after a 15 yard gain in the second half at TCF Bank Stadium. The Gophers won 17-10. Mandatory Credit: Jesse Johnson-US PRESSWIRE

As the Syracuse Orange football program heads into a much-needed bye week, lets get caught up in this post-Minnesota loss malaise.

Some good news to look forward to. The next time Syracuse takes the field, Justin Pugh will take it with them. The All-Big East left tackle will reclaim his rightful spot. That means Sean Hickey will slide back to his normal spot at right tackle. Sweet Lou Alexander filled in there for Hickey and, by all accounts, he was anything but sweet against the Gophers.

That means the Pugh-Chibane connection is restored and, in theory, the offensive line will get back to business. They'll need to put the Minnesota game behind them as the line gave up just as many sacks in this game (3) as they did the entire season before it, not to mention all the false starts and poor protection all night long.

Pugh, for one, is ready to move forward:

The bad news, which isn't really all that bad at this point, is that freshman tight end Ron Thompson will officially miss the entire season with a Dreaded Lower Body Injury. The news was first reported by CuseNation.com last week and the school announced it today. I personally had huge hopes for Thompson this season but at this point, he might as well redshirt, sort himself out and get ready to become Syracuse's next dominant TE over the course of the following four years.

There were some kudos to come out of the Minnesota game. Sir Alec Lemon and Siriki Diabate made the weekly Big East Conference honor roll for their performances. Lemon caught nine balls for 106 yards and broke the school record for receptions. Diabate, who is officially this year's "LB Who Makes The Leap," had a game-high and career-high 10 tackles.

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