We’ve reached Week 10 of the 2022 Syracuse Orange football season, and before diving into the last third of the regular season, we asked you all to fill us in on a few things. Now that the results are in, here is what Orange Nation is feeling heading into the final four games:
Almost everyone gave Dino Babers a passing grade for this season’s coaching, and 65% of you settled on a ‘B’. That’s probably where I stand too. So far in his 7th season with SU, Babers has guided the Orange to a 6-2 start, a ranked with over NC State, and a month in both the Coaches’ Poll and AP Top 25. The main complaint is probably letting a winnable Clemson game slip away - but all things considered, the only two losses were against nationally recognized programs. A bowl berth with a serious chance for more than six wins is respectable enough.
Nearly half of respondents settled on the Atlanta product, who has done an admirable job filling in at LB for the injured Stefon Thompson. In 6 games, McDonald has 32 total tackles, one tackle-for-loss, and an interception. Oh, and he’s another Newhouse BDJ guy. It’s genuinely really rare to see a football or MBB player be able to handle the course-load that comes with being in the journalism program while also killing it on the athletic side, so my hat’s off to him.
The sophomore slump is in the rearview mirror for Carter, who has stepped up to be one of the biggest playmakers in the Orange defense. He’s got three takeaways on the season so far: two interceptions and a 90-yard scoop-and-score TD at Clemson. That’s tied with the injured Garrett Williams for the team lead. I think Mikel Jones said it best: “If you know Ja’Had Carter, that’s what he does.”
It was closer than the rest, but our final poll has CDRW making his first college start tomorrow against the Pittsburgh Panthers. He looked pretty good against Notre Dame, slinging for 190 yards, a TD, and one tipped pick. Our inspiration could theoretically be there to back him up if Shrader isn’t good to go - #11 does live just north of the Steel City.
Thank you all as always for answering the polls, and feel free to sound off in the comments with your opinions and suggestions for future questions.