By Conor Hurley
|Photo by Jason Rostkowski|
The Syracuse University community is buzzing about the football team’s season and home opener vs. Wake Forest this Thursday.
Wait… buzzing about… football???
Yes. For the first time in awhile, there is significant hope and excitement for SU football. Coming off a 7-5 record and a win in the New Era Pinstripe Bowl, Ryan Nassib and company are looking to start off their season with a statement win vs. the Wake Forest Demon Deacons.
Fortunately for the Orange, the football Demon Deacons do not have the same pedigree as their basketball counterparts.
WF finished last in the ACC with a 3-9 2010 campaign, going 1-7 in the division. They do return starters Tanner Price, Josh Adams and Chris Givens on offense at QB, RB and WR, all coming off good seasons. They had the 110th ranked defense though, giving up 35.8 points per game.
Nassib, coming of a stellar season which included over 2,300 yards passing and 19 TD’s, will look to exploit the holes in the demon deacon defense. And he will not be alone in that quest.
Despite Delone Carter’s departure for the NFL, Antwon Bailey was much more than an adequate backup last season, and is looking to have a breakout 2011 campaign. Wide receivers Van Chew and
Alec Lemon will also be back and will look to improve on their impressive 2010 seasons.
And you already know Phillip Thomas, Chandler Jones and the rest of the SU defense will do their absolute best to keep the Deacs off the scoreboard.
One outstanding negative for SU football last season was their play in the Dome, disappointingly going 3-4. They were young, fairly inexperienced, and may have not been ready for the big stage and hype in front of the ruckus SU faithful.
This year, I expect the Orange to do much better in the Dome, and tomorrow, I expect the Orange to win 24-3.