2012 Syracuse Football Preview:
The Orange will be looking to bounce back from a rough 2011 season. Overall Syracuse finished at 5-7 but only 1-6 in conference play. After their 8 win season in 2010 the Orange need a strong 2012 season to maintain the progress seen under head coach Doug Marrone in the past four years. As if this was not enough pressure Syracuse will have plenty of shoes to fill on both sides of the ball.
Offensively look for veteran QB Ryan Nassib to step up and take control of an offense that lost its only 1,000 yard rusher, Antwon Bailey. With no clear cut successor to the graduate the running backs have a challenging task ahead of them, especially since Nassib was the second leading rusher with 189 yards in 2011. Leading the O-line will be left tackle Justin Pugh, who has two years of play left. If Nassib can get some relief from the o-line he should be able to re-kindle his connection with wide out Alec Lemon. After three years of playing together the duo has formed a chemistry that could play a huge role in bringing this offense back to life.
On the other side of the ball, the middle of the field will be the least of Syracuse’s worries. With Marquis Spruill and Dyshawn Davis returning as the top underclassmen at linebackers it’s the D-line and secondary that imposes the biggest threat. Senior safety Shamarko Thomas will set the precedence for the secondary as no returners recorded more than 2 interceptions last year. Losing senior safety Phillip Thomas, who led the D in interceptions, means the secondary will have to find another way to produce turnovers. As for the D-line, no defensive end Chandler Jones means there are no returning players with more than 2 sacks in 2011. The task of closing the pocket and applying the pressure will fall on the shoulders of Deon Goggins and Jay Bromley. Both recorded 1.5 sacks last year and lead the D-line in tackles. This will prove to be Syracuse’s biggest obstacle in the forthcoming 2012 season and could potentially make or break them this year.
SYRACUSE ORANGE INFORMATION:
Location: Syracuse, New York
Stadium: Carrier Dome
Conference: Big East Conference
Rivals: Pittsburgh Panthers, West Virginia Mountaineers (Ben Schwartzwalder Trophy), Boston College Eagles, Miami Hurricanes, Virginia Tech Hokies
Mascot: Otto the Orange
Heisman Trophies: Ernie Davis, 1961
Notable Alumni: Ernie Davis, Floyd Little, Tim Green
Notable Bowl Games:
Syracuse's football program first began competing in 1889. The program's early history was very successful but would slump in the 1930's and '40s. Syracuse won a national championship in 1959 with Ernie Davis, the first African-American Heisman Winner. The '60s saw the running of Floyd Little and Larry Csonka. Art Monk and Joe Morris starred at Syracuse in the 1980's. The Orange's best success came under the coaching of Dick MacPherson and his successor Paul Pasqualoni. They would lead the team to 4 conference titles and 11 bowl game appearances. Some of the great players they coached include Donovan McNabb, Marvin Harrison, and Qadry Ismail.
The Syracuse Orange play their home games at the Carrier Dome in Syracuse, New York. The stadium holds 50,000 spectators and is the largest domed stadium on a college campus. A Syracuse Orange home game is about as noisy as it gets, and visitors will feel more like they're at an NFL game. Buy Syracuse Orange tickets today and see whether or not this storied program can regain its stature as a national powerhouse!
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SYRACUSE!! Come on SU!!! September 26, 2011