The Syracuse Orange has struggled over the last two years, and most fans have pointed to the offense as the main source of problems. On Sunday afternoon, those fans got what they wanted as offensive coordinator Sterlin Gilbert won’t return to Syracuse, as reported by Zach Barnett at FootballScoop.
The move is not a surprising one considering how the offense has evolved under Gilbert. The quarterback decisions, whether made by him or not, have affected the offense in terms of how the team plays. The tight end usage has significantly dropped and questionable situational decisions, again made by him or not, have flummoxed Syracuse fans.
The one good thing to come out of Gilbert’s tenure as offensive coordinator is the emergence of Sean Tucker, although that is more so a result of the player and not the system he was put in. The quarterback fiasco between Tommy DeVito and Garrett Shrader forced the team to adjust to a shorter playstyle and the gaudy offensive numbers that Syracuse teams put up during the first years of Dino Babers’ tenure are almost a figment of one’s imagination.
The decision on the next offensive coordinator will be an interesting one, especially given the personnel available on the roster. Garrett Shrader still hasn’t proven that he can deliver on a long pass consistently and a star receiver from the wide receivers and the tight ends has yet to be developed. Then comes the question of the high-tempo, no-huddle offense that Babers promised when he first came to Syracuse, which has been rarely, if at all seen the past couple of years.
No matter what, the offense was a point of contention among the fanbase, and it now gets a reboot in a crucial year for the Syracuse team.