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Syracuse football: first down offense vs Pitt

Run run run

NCAA Football: Pittsburgh at Syracuse Dennis Schneidler-USA TODAY Sports

The Syracuse Orange broke out the old-school offense on Saturday in the Bronx as they broke their losing streak.

Looking back at the numbers showed that the Orange certainly caught the Pitt Panthers by surprise in the first half. Syracuse was able to implement their rushing attack by finding success on first down. The Orange gained five or more yards on seven of sixteen first-down plays in the first half, which kept them in position to keep the ball on the ground.

First down offense vs Pitt

Run or Pass- 1H Yards Run or Pass- 2H Yards
Run or Pass- 1H Yards Run or Pass- 2H Yards
Run (Shrader) 34 Run (Allen) 4
Run (Allen) 5 Pass (Incomplete) 0
Run (Allen) 6 Run (Allen) 0
Run (Allen) 0 Pass (Incomplete) 0
Run (Villari) 1 Run (Shrader) 12
Run (Allen) 11 Run (Allen) 5
Run (Shrader) 11 Run (Allen) 1
Run (Allen) 6 Run (Allen) 2
Pass (Shrader) -9 fumble Run (Allen) 2
Run (Allen) 3 Run (Allen) 4
Run (Shrader) 12 Run (Allen) 5
Run (Allen) 2 Run (Shrader) -3
Run (Shrader) 2 Run (Price) 4
Run (Allen) 4 Run (Shrader) 4
Run (Allen) 4 Run (Price) 6
Run (Shrader) -1
1st Half Plays Yards Avg yards per play
Run 15 100 6.67
Pass 1 -9 -9
Total 16 91 5.68
2nd Half Plays Yards Avg yards per play
Run 13 46 3.53
Pass 2 0 0
Total 15 46 3.06
Game Total Plays Yards Avg yards per play
Run 28 146 5.21
Pass 3 -9 -3
Total 31 135 4.35

The Pitt defense seemed to have adjusted to the Syracuse game plan in the second half and they put the Orange behind the chains in early downs. However, thanks to advantageous field position courtesy of the Syracuse defense, the running game was able to remain the focal point.

It’ll be tough to replicate the same approach this week at Georgia Tech, but if the Orange can find a recipe to get positive yardage on first down, it’ll allow them to run more and that seems like it’s the best approach for this current roster.