We’ve become quite accustomed to Dino Babers’s inspiring speeches after big Syracuse Orange football wins, but the third-year coach would prefer not to be known for them.
He spoke to ESPN’s David Hale about the post-game moments while reflecting on last year’s upset over the Clemson Tigers, and also managed to slip in a couple movie references (including one for “Dumb and Dumber”). And while Babers may not love the way the videos get shared around the web afterward, each signature moment going viral has almost built upon the next. It gets people talking about Syracuse football far more than at any point in the last 15 years or so.
That only means good things in the way of continuing to improve this program as Dino already has. Cautiously, his oratory skills are moving the needle in terms of the talent the Orange can get in the door. And with some help from John Wildhack and SU’s connections at ESPN, each of these upsets are paying major dividends.
Will we see another one on Saturday afternoon? We can hope so, even if Dino would prefer the cameras weren’t involved — he also knows how much these moments mean for fans and future students, too. It’s free national advertising. The likes of which very few programs get. Might as well enjoy it.
That, plus more of your Syracuse-related links below:
The next thing to know about a Babers speech is that he doesn’t want it to be splashed across Facebook and Twitter and Instagram. He actually hates that this has become a thing. He doesn’t want his team to be a novelty act, good for one viral video a year and not much else.
“But if there was anybody that could be one yard short or two yards short, that could do something extra special to get those one or two yards, it was him. And he stretches the ball over his freaking head, and we barely get it. First of all, we don’t have a running back that tall. We don’t have a running back that long. It’s just a classic, big-time Eric Dungey play.”
Front four batters Trevor Lawrence: Clemson is starting a true freshman quarterback, but this isn’t your normal first-year signal-caller. The No. 1 overall recruit in last year’s class, Trevor Lawrence stands at 6 feet, 6 inches and is fully capable of shredding the Orange defense from the pocket.
The Orange defense holds the distinction of somehow being No. 1 in defensive success rate* (28.2) yet 128th in opponent explosiveness allowed, having surrendered six plays of 50 yards (122nd) and 10 of 30 yards or more (94th). The highest-ranked offense Syracuse has faced was in the opener at Western Michigan (38th in efficiency per ESPN), which posted 42 points in a loss.
When Clemson head coach Dabo Swinney made the move to start freshman quarterback Trevor Lawrence over senior Kelly Bryant, he chose talent over experience. But will the 18-year old Lawrence crack under the pressure as the competition gets tougher?
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