On Monday, Syracuse Orange Head Football Coach Dino Babers shared some thoughts with media around Saturday’s upset win over the Virginia Tech Hokies. Understandably, there was some conversation around his thrilling post-game pep talk.
"That's probably like the only glimpse you're going to get of us in the locker room. I don't like sharing family things. That's something we've been doing for a long time, and it's very personal with me, and it's something that's a reward for the guys in the locker room.
... I really don't even enjoy public speaking."
That’s quite a surprise to hear, considering how much of a hit Babers has been with press and fans since he arrived on campus. From our first interview with him holding court at ACC Football Kickoff to the ESPN Car Wash and Saturday’s pep talk (among other moments), Coach seems less than shy about sharing a quick and entertaining soundbite. And while he may not be a fan of the camera, he understands the impact of the win and the team’s reaction to him, and how that translates for the program. As he said himself:
“Better hold onto it. Better hit save. You might be re-watching it for a while."
Babers also addressed the “kumbaya meetings” he spoke so much about after the win, though without a ton of detail. Simply some private team meetings about things that needed to change — it would seem they worked, since a whole lot went right against the Hokies that hadn’t in previous games.
Nothing on the picnics, however. Those remain a mystery.
Praise was also handed out to a few standout players from the game, including quarterback Eric Dungey, strong safety Daivon Ellison and special teamer (and running back) George Morris II. Ellison, particularly, has a big fan in Babers:
"No. 19 is amazing. Talk about someone who is not very large in stature, but you open him up and he's got the biggest heart in the room.”
Ellison now sits at the top of the depth chart for this week’s game vs. Boston College. The sophomore has also received ACC player of the week honors already this year. Dungey didn’t need more praise heaped onto him by his coach or the press (including us, we’ve all thoroughly acknowledged just how good Saturday’s effort was). But it’s still worth noting he was the “offensive back” of the week in the ACC for week seven.