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Syracuse Football: Scott Shafer Happy With Terrel Hunt's Spring Performance

The Orange head coach talked about Terrel Hunt and more during the ACC teleconference this morning.

Rich Barnes-USA TODAY Sports

After playing in just five games in 2014 before suffering a fractured fibula, quarterback Terrel Hunt was back under center for the Syracuse Orange this spring.

And despite needing to shake off rust and learn a new offense, Hunt played well enough to please his head coach.

"It was good to have him back," said Scott Shafer, speaking on the annual ACC Spring Football Media Teleconference this morning. "It was good to see him healthy. He had to knock some cob webs off... After we got through those first four or five practices where it was big install, Terrel did a nice job."

Hunt, who is entering his senior season, threw for 1,638 yards and led SU to a Texas Bowl victory in 2013.

Aside from his quarterback, Shafer touched on a number of other topics during his 10 minutes on the teleconference. Here are some of the highlights:

Offensive line starters up in air

Shafer wouldn't officially name his starters on the offensive line, saying nothing would be solidified until the team hosts Rhode Island on Sept. 4. Expected starters are Ivan Foy at left tackle, Nick Robinson at left guard, Rob Trudo at center, Aaron Roberts at left guard, and Omari Palmer at right tackle. But Shafer would only say that the "competition is still on."

Shafer impressed by underclassmen

After losing several defensive starters from last year's group, Shafer said there has been "great intensity" between players fighting for this season's starting jobs. The head coach seemed optimistic about a number of second year players, including linebackers Parris Bennett and Zaire Franklin and defensive tackles Kayton Samuels and Chris Slayton. Shafer called Samuels the most improved player on defense, while adding that Franklin has been "running the show" at middle linebacker.

Despite going 3-9 in 2014, SU's defense wasn't the issue, ranking 26th among all FBS teams in total defense. This season, it could be up to the underclassmen to save that unit from taking a dip statistically.

SU monitoring incoming freshmen

Shafer said he and his staff check in once per week with SU's 2015 recruits, who have been working on a freshman offseason manual provided by assistant athletic director Will Hicks. Syracuse has weight goals for each of its incoming freshmen, Shafer said, and provides them with nutrition plans.

Added the head coach: "It's been good. We've had real good communication with those kids. It's fun to see their progress."


And that's it. We're probably not going to hear from Coach Shafer for awhile until summer camps start, so hope you got your fill above. Once the ACC posts the full transcript of the teleconference, we'll post a link here.