In his two-plus years at the helm of the Syracuse Orange football program, we get bits and pieces around Dino Babers’s personal interests.
He likes car analogies, movies, Game of Thrones and Carlos Santana. And apparently, rapper Meek Mill.
For those unaware, Meek Mill (real name: Robert Rihmeek Williams) had been in prison since November 2017 and was released on bail Tuesday following an appeal to the Pennsylvania Supreme Court. One of his first stops after getting out? The (his) Philadelphia 76ers’ home playoff game against the Miami Heat.
With Syracuse offensive coordinator Mike Lynch clearly headed down to Philly for some sort of recruiting trip (feel free to speculate below), Babers may have just took it as an opportunity to get in on a larger social conversation. Or, perhaps -- hopefully — he’s actually a big fan.
Babers didn’t expand on his Meek Mill fandom on Twitter, so we figured we’d take it upon ourselves to do so. While former co-OC Sean Lewis used to use Drake gifs all the time, you never saw Dino engaging did you? Curious given the height of Lewis’s gif tweets were during the height of the Drake/Meek Mill feud. Perhaps Babers chose a side there.
But which Meek tracks are his favorites? If you’re near the indoor practice facility over the summer, don’t be surprised to hear any of these songs on the PA system. Dino’s likely top 10:
“Wins & Losses”
Babers encouraged us to have belief without evidence, but eventually we’re looking at wins and losses. That’s what he’s focused on as a coach, so it’s an appropriate lead track.
“Open” (feat. Verse Simmonds)
This offense is geared toward finding players open downfield after sucking the defense in repeatedly with dive runs and short screen passes. That worked really well in spots back in 2016. However, the deep ball wasn’t nearly as effective in 2017.
“Ball Player” (feat. Quavo)
Self explanatory. We sort of need ball players to fill out the roster and improve the team.
“I Got the Juice”
Typical Syracuse Orange “juice” reference, and also contains another meaning for energy/speed. We’ve got plenty of that... most games.
“Believe It” (Feat. Rick Ross)
See the “belief without evidence” note above. We’ve seen some evidence of what this program can be. Once Syracuse puts that potential together for a winning season and perhaps even more, then we’ll “believe it.”
The second level of Syracuse’s defense has struggled for about a decade now -- even before Babers arrived. This one’s a stretch. Just roll with it.
“Cold Hearted” (Feat. Diddy)
Syracuse is cold. Dino likes to link this fact to Game of Thrones, even to the extent of making our football uniforms evoke the show. Cold hearted seems related to all of this.
A backhanded reference to the colors of Syracuse’s uniforms more often than not. Perhaps he’s being facetious. Perhaps he isn’t. Who’s to say?
“We Ball” (Feat. Young Thug)
We’re playing a game, no? So, ball we shall.
“Never Lose” (Feat. Lihtz Kamraz)
Here’s the ultimate goal for Babers at Syracuse -- or elsewhere. College football’s goal is pretty simple for everyone: Never lose. Seems reasonable that we’d close this mixtape with an aspirational goal that the Orange(men) have only accomplished twice.
Have any better additions to Dino’s new Meek Mill-only playlist? Share away.