New Syracuse Orange head coach Dino Babers was one of the breakout stars of 2015 ACC Kickoff. His Game of Thrones metaphors and the way he handled discussion about his offense won over a lot of ACC media members and helped solidify the notion that SU Football is in very good hands.
Aside from the fun stuff, what did Dino have to say about where he came from and what Syracuse's offense will look like moving forward? Let's find out.
On new Syracuse AD John Wildhack:
"Things happen for a reason. John Wildhack, wow. I think that with him, he's going to give me the opportunities that I need to be successful. That doesn't mean I'm going to get it done, but I'm going to have a lot of fun trying and I think he's going to be right there with me."
On how his time at Hawaii will help him at SU:
"I think it's helped a lot. The big thing that Hawaii sold is family. Yeah, you're going to come to Hawaii and play. Your parents may not get to see you play a lot. And back then, they didn't have TV contracts. Now with the ACC Network being launched, that's going to help Syracuse immensely. Because now you've got those parents in different states being able to watch their sons play. But I think that those experiences and the things you need to see when you don't have all your eggs int he basket, so to speak, everything in the perfect location, the things we learned in Hawaii have a lot to do with the things we sell in Syracuse -- as far away as those two places could be on the map."
On how his offense is and is not like Baylor's under Art Briles:
"We're like Baylor, but we're different than Baylor," Babers said at the ACC Kickoff on Friday. "If you really know what Baylor does, we're different than Baylor. Speed wise we're a lot like Baylor, but we like to get in some sets and do some things that Baylor doesn't have to do because their personnel is so much better than everyone else's personnel."
On how transitioning the SU offense is his toughest task yet:
"A lot of our wide receivers are ex-option running backs and they catch like ex-option running backs. So any time you take over a new football team, you have to decide A: do you have enough pieces to mold your offense and defense to the pieces you have, or (B:) do you take your philosophy and just put it on the football field and let the recruits that are coming in see exactly what you're trying to do so they can fit themselves into those slots and help you move along in recruiting.
"... We're going to have to take the personnel we have, do our system and let recruits see what our system is going to be and hopefully, that'll help us bring the recruits that we need to get this team to the place where it needs to be."
On how fans will like his offense:
"We're going to try to get a lot of plays because we may not have so many good plays in the beginning. So next year, they'll get one or two that they like. But if they keep coming back, they'll get a product they enjoy."
On the value of offensive linemen:
"Everyone says the lion is the king of the jungle. It's not. The elephants are the king of the jungle. And if you get in the water, it's hippos. Everybody thinks it's crocodiles and alligators, but hippos can snap those things' backs by closing their jaws. The big boys are what you need."
On why he doesn't own a car:
"I do not own a car. Now my wife owns two cars and I've got four daughters and they own three cars so I've got five cars that I'm either paying for or I've paid for. But I do not own a car. The last car that I've owned was a 1986 Cutlass Supreme. I bought it in 1987 from Diepholz Chevrolet in Charleston, Illinois. I bought the car and I kept that 1986 Cutlass — custom rims, it was sweet; all-black; vinyl top — I kept it until I sold it to my oldest brother in, my God, was it 2000-and-something?
"I really thought whoever made that car made it wrong. You know how you make a car and it lasts five or six years, then it breaks down and you've got to get another one? I had that thing from what, '87 to 2000? I had it 13 years and nothing ever happened to it. My brother who loves cars, Luther, who has all kinds of cars, he finally got tired of seeing me driving that car to his house that he bought the car from me.
"The minute he bought the car from me, three months later, it broke down. And to this day, he says I knew there was something wrong with that car -- and I didn't know it. So that's the last car that I've ever owned."
On what it's like to be around a receiver like Larry Fitzgerald:
"While I'm at the University of Pittsburgh, Larry Fitzgerald is there. I'm not coaching him. I'm coaching the running backs. We're at the end of spring ball, and all the reporters are there. I'm coaching the running backs and I hear, 'Oh!' and I turn around thinking someone tore their knee up. You hear -- click, click, click -- cameras going off. I asked what happened, and a guy goes, 'Larry Fitzgerald just dropped a ball. That's his first drop of the spring.' Then we went through the season, and I believe he had one drop that year. So Larry Fitzgerald had one drop in practice and one drop in a football game for an entire year. And that's how I want my receivers to play."
On the current state of soda and milk ay Syracuse:
"I said, you've got skim milk and soda pop right next to it. I said, this does not make any sense. So we got rid of the soda pop and I gave them 2 percent milk because they're big boys and they can drink 2 percent milk and eat their cereal the right way."
.@CuseFootball head man @CoachBabersCuse with the quick hands #OrangeIsTheNewFast #MustSeeACC pic.twitter.com/La0OE6PULJ— ACC Digital Network (@theACCDN) July 22, 2016