We all hoped tonight would be a reset for the struggling Syracuse Orange. Instead, it was like they never left Tallahassee.
The offense was ice-cold while the opposing attack blew past a beleaguered SU secondary in a 38-10 Hokies victory.
When the only 1st half highlight that ‘Cuse posted on their socials was taking the field opposite “Enter Sandman”, there’s a great many issues - and there’s no looking past them any longer.
I’ll keep it simple. The first four Orange drives were all three-and-outs, with net yards of -11, 2, 7, and -4. In the Hokies’ first four, they scored 3, 7, 3, & 3.
Syracuse got exactly one first down on their fifth try before having to punt once again. By this point, the defense was already exhausted, and they had no answers for the ensuing pair of VT touchdown drives. The first of those included a 62-yard TD grab and go by Hokie senior Da’Quan Felton, who burned Isaiah Johnson in man coverage.
SU didn’t find the endzone until the 3rd quarter, but by then this game had already been decided.
Shrader hits Villari for the 6-yd score.— Syracuse Football (@CuseFootball) October 27, 2023
Dino Babers’s future is now looking as shaky as ever. His team looks like they’ve completely checked out, and even in a blowout like this, he still made some head-scratching decisions. With time winding down in the 2nd quarter, Babers used his timeouts to try and get one play on offense... which turned into a LeQuint Allen draw play instead of a Hail Mary. Even more inexplicable was his decision to leave Garrett Shrader in for the entire game, needlessly risking the health of his QB1 even further.
Shrader was in the red with negative rushing yards for the second straight week, and he didn’t fare much better in the pocket, getting sacked eight times.
The only tiny bright spots I could find in this dismal performance were Damien Alford’s four catches for 70 yards and Marlowe Wax’s pair of sacks. Otherwise... it’s a good thing basketball season is about to begin.
You have to wonder what the atmosphere for next Friday’s game against Boston College will be. It truly seems like everything is coming crashing down for Orange football - but unlike last year, they no longer hold the promise of another shot.