As we know by now, the ACC honors “legends” each year at its biggest championship events -- including the men’s basketball tournament and football title game. That’s fine for the long-standing members of the league, though obviously things get a little weird for the newer additions, whose legends never played a game in the conference.
With that in mind, the Syracuse Orange’s 2017 ACC Football Legend is Tom Coughlin.
Coughlin played three seasons with Syracuse, becoming a quality pass-catcher out of the backfield. However, he’s had even more contributions on the sidelines. After three years coaching Boston College (nice trolling, ACC), he left for the Jacksonville Jaguars and then the New York Giants. He won two Super Bowls with New York, including Super Bowl XLII, when the Giants beat the previously undefeated New England Patriots.
He’ll be honored along with the rest of this year’s legends at the ACC Football Championship Game in Charlotte this December.
One day, Syracuse’s ACC Football Legends will have played ACC games, and those days will probably make a little more sense. The program’s previous honorees have included Chris Gedney, Art Monk and Floyd Little, who all totaled one season of (any) conference play in their careers. There were no legends honored last year.
Obviously with Syracuse’s rich history, there’s still a pretty deep bench for them to look toward for future years before we get close to modern times. You’d have to think Donovan McNabb’s on the short list, along with Marvin Harrison and Dwight Freeney. But one might think names like Jim Brown, Ernie Davis, Ben Schwartzwalder, Larry Csonka and Walter Reyes (among others) could all be next up, however, over those younger alums.