Orangeyes Daily Articles for Monday for Football


Co 2020-21 Iggy Award Winner MPG (special again)
Staff member
Aug 15, 2011

Welcome to Canada Day!

Canada Day celebrates the country's movement to self-government. On July 1, 1867, Canada became a self-governing Dominion of Great Britain, after the passage of the British North America Act. It also became a federation with four provinces: New Brunswick, Nova Scotia, Ontario, and Quebec. These provinces were made from the British colonies of New Brunswick, Nova Scotia, and the Province of Canada (previously Upper Canada and Lower Canada). The Act allowed for other provinces and territories to join the country in the future. Indeed, more land was added, and Canada now consists of ten provinces and three territories.

On June 20, 1868, the Governor General said the anniversary of Canada becoming a Dominion should be celebrated. It became a statutory holiday in 1879 and was known as Dominion Day at the time. The first official celebrations weren't held until 1917, on the Dominion's fiftieth anniversary. It began being celebrated more frequently after World War II, and even more so after the 100th anniversary in 1967. It began being called Canada Day by celebrants and has been officially known as Canada Day since 1983. This was stipulated by the Canada Act of 1982. Canada also became a fully independent country with this act, no longer being under the dominion of Great Britain.

SU News (; McAllister)

One of Syracuse football's top targets in the 2020 recruiting cycle has set a decision date. Charlotte (N.C.) Mallard Creek two-way lineman Joshua Ilaoatweeted that he will have a "big announcement" on July 4th. He tells that announcement will be a commitment. Ilaoa holds offers from Colorado State, East Carolina, Hawaii, Illinois, Kent State, Marshall and several others. Virginia Tech has also expressed strong interest. He took an unofficial visit to Syracuse right before the dead period began.
Stay up to date with the Orange and their recruiting efforts by taking five seconds to sign up for our FREE newsletter now!

Ilaoa is rated as a three star prospect as a defensive tackle by 247Sports. However, Syracuse is recruiting him as an interior offensive lineman. Ilaoa is listed at 6-foot-3, 280 pounds. You can watch his highlights from his junior season at Mallard Creek in the video at the top of the page. The video features highlights of Ilaoa on both sides of the ball. Syracuse has prioritized Ilaoa for some time, and lead recruiter Steve Stanard has worked hard to develop a strong relationship.

... (itlh./com; Esden Jr)

Where is the current 2020 NFL Draft stock of the best Syracuse football prospects? We spoke with an insider who gave us all the details.

Syracuse football hasn’t had a player selected higher than the seventh round since the 2014 NFL Draft. That could change in a big way in 2020.

Josh Buchanan is an expert that works with the Phil Steele Magazine and Draft Scout; he joined Paul ‘Boy Green’ Esden on Drive Time Sports to go over the Syracuse football prospects who have the most promising 2020 NFL Draft potential.

  • Moe Neal (running back)
    1. 31st RB listed on Draft Scout.
      • Currently, Moe is pegged as an undrafted free agent that’ll eventually sign with an NFL team as a “camp body or second wave free agent”.
        • “I want to say this from the jump, we’re going to be talking about some guys right now that are labeled in the top-100 pick conversation but will go undrafted and vice-versa.”
    2. According to Josh, most NFL scouts believe that the speed Moe Neal has displayed in college won’t translate to the next level. Scouts predict that Neal is a “4.6” kind of guy (40-yard dash).
    3. If he wants to change the narrative of NFL scouts there are a few things he can do:
      1. Increase his weight. In the spring he was listed at 196, NFL teams would like to see him in the 205-210 range and to test better (NFL scouts are hoping for a low 4.5 40-yard dash test time).
      2. Also if he was able to notch a 1,000-yard season on the ground that could really change things for him.
  • Sean Riley (wide receiver)
    • 58th WR listed on Draft Scout.
    • While “58th overall” may not be impressive, he’s the fifth best punt returner in all of college football, per the Phil Steele Magazine.
    • Josh Buchanan says that could be a huge difference maker:
      • “Riley is our No. 5 rated punt returner and that can be a big difference in his NFL Draft stock. When you’re in the mid to late rounds, usually the difference between you getting taken and not is whether or not you can play special teams. I’ve seen guys who can only play wide receiver and can’t play on special teams and they’re taken as highly or at all. While on the other side if you can do both you’ve got such a better chance. Even if someone is a slightly better receiver than you, but you play special teams, that can be the difference. NFL people believe Sean can be a good return guy and it wouldn’t shock me if he made an NFL roster.”
... (; Esden Jr)

Former Syracuse football LB Shyheim Cullen has entered the NFL Supplemental Draft. In anticipation of that he has set a Pro Day, here are the details.

A few weeks ago former Syracuse football linebacker Shyheim Cullen was ruled ineligible by the NCAA.

According to his stepfather John, Shyheim “was devastated he wasn’t able to return to his team for the 2019 season. He was really looking to building on what he started last year.”
With the collegiate route no longer on the table, Cullen and his family decided the NFL supplemental draft was the best way to go.

Although it’s not automatic, you have to apply to be accepted into the supplemental draft. After filing his petition (which is reviewed on a case-by-case basis), he received his approval Stephen Bailey of was first to report the news.
After being accepted into the draft pool, Cullen started receiving immediate interest from NFL teams. The attention he received was so overwhelming that he and his representation decided to host a Pro Day.

Pro Day details:

  • The Pro Day will be in Lowell, Massachusetts at 4 p.m. on Monday, July 1.
  • Shyheim will do all the NFL Combine events at his Pro Day:
    • Bench press, vertical leap, the 40-yard dash, 3-cone drill, 20 and 60-yard shuttle.
  • Cullen will take his full measurements for NFL teams.
  • On top of that Shyheim will also do individual linebacker drills.
If NFL teams like what they see they may choose to bring Shyheim back to their facilities for a private individual workout ahead of the NFL Supplemental Draft on July 10.
Cullen is represented by Sean Stellato of Stellato Sports (America’s Premiere Sports Agency). One of Sean’s other clients is former Syracuse football wide receiver, Jamal Custis. Shortly after going unselected in the 2019 NFL Draft, Custis signed the richest undrafted free agent deal over the last two years with the Kansas City Chiefs.
... (; Carey)

Syracuse football added a lot of talent over the last 2 weeks. Here is the full film breakdown of their latest acquisition from the sunshine state.

Syracuse football had their hot streak of commits last week. We already touched on Stefan Thompson, Garth Barclay, Justin Barron, and Leon Lowery. Now meet the newest Cuse commit.
Robert Hanna is a 6-foot 170-pound safety from Miami, Florida. He attends Miami Palmetto High School, where incoming Orange DB, Cornelius Nunn played. In addition to Hanna and Nunn, the Orange are also hoping to land Kentron Poitier, a talented wideout at Palmetto.

Both Hanna and Poitier were on the Orange campus this past weekend when Hanna pulled the trigger. The Syracuse staff has perhaps their best recruiter in Nick Monroe, primarily after the two Palmetto standouts.
A 3-star recruit according to, Hanna boasts an impressive offer list. Boston College, Louisville, Miami, UNC, and UCF all extended offers.
He announced his commitment to Syracuse via twitter:

— Robert Hanna (@cityrob_305) June 22, 2019

Hanna is the first defensive back to commit to Syracuse in the class.
Let’s take a look at his film:

The 1:20 mark of the tape is where I want to start: Hanna is covering a slot receiver. The opposing team has a bubble screen called to a receiver on the opposite side of the formation, who is in motion. The slot guy is supposed to block Hanna. However, the Florida native has other ideas, blowing by the would-be-blocker getting into the backfield bringing down the receiver. Hanna shows off really good speed and instincts in order to bring him down.


Phil Steele: “Syracuse football is finally back” with Dino Babers at the helm (; Esden Jr)

College football guru Phil Steele joined Boy Green on The Score 1260. He explained why Syracuse football is back with Dino Babers at the helm.

Syracuse football arrived on the scene in 2018 much to the shock of the college football world. After back-to-back 4-8 seasons under Dino Babers, the Orange delivered a remarkable 10-3 campaign.
But the real question that remains is Syracuse back? This was the first 10 win season since 2001 after four straight sub .500 campaigns.

The Orange have only experienced back-to-back over .500 seasons twice in the 21st century:

  • 2013 (7-6), 2012 (8-5).
  • 2001 (10-3), 2000 (6-5).
Although if you’re going to trust anyone with the answer to the question, it should be college football guru Phil Steele. He joined Paul ‘Boy Green’ Esden on The Score 1260 on Friday afternoon and gave his answer to whether or not Syracuse is finally back:
“Yes, I think it is. You look at the job Dino Babers has done getting this team to the level they’re at. All you have to do is look at the Clemson game over the last two years. Knocked off Clemson two years ago and really should’ve knocked them off last year. They led that thing by two scores in the fourth quarter, a tough loss there. It’s great to see Syracuse back up to that 10 win level. Now I’m not sure if they’re “back” in terms of the Clemson football level, but they’ve shown they can play with Clemson. Quarterback play is going to be key this year but overall this has been a team that is on the rise and I’m pretty excited about Syracuse this year.”
The problem is, and this is going to sound weird, but Syracuse football fans are afraid of success. The fear that exists among Orange fans is if the team has too much success, then Dino Babers will eventually leave.
Phil Steele also commented on that fear among Syracuse fans and why he believes Dino can actually stay here with the Orange and continue to build this thing up:

... (; Willis)

Sam Ehlinger has been in the crosshairs of an NFL Hall of Fame quarterback and one of the league’s rising stars over the last two weeks, and it’s about time for some push back. NFL Network analyst Bucky Brooks recently watched Ehlinger at Elite 11, and he believes that a lot of the criticism regarding Ehlinger is very overblown. Many seem to be under the impression that Ehlinger is not a legitimate NFL prospect, likening him to other run-first quarterbacks like Dan LeFevour, but Ehlinger appears to be a much better passer. Ehlinger completed almost 65 percent of his passes and threw for 25 touchdowns while only throwing 5 interceptions as a sophomore in 2018. His ability to run only makes him more dangerous.
After watching @sehlinger3 spin it at @Elite11 workouts, I think the football world might be sleeping on his long-term potential.
He throws it much better than most observers suggest and his footwork/eyes/arm strength in a workout would earn high marks from coaches.
— Bucky Brooks (@BuckyBrooks) June 30, 2019
Ehlinger isn’t the only quarterback that Brooks is high on either. Jalen Hurts is another quarterback that many analysts don’t see as an NFL prospect. Hurts gave way to Tua Tagovailoa at Alabama, and he transferred to Oklahoma this offseason where he has been working in Lincoln Riley’s system. The criticism of Hurts has been remarkably unfair considering he has been relatively accurate, and he has not turned the ball over. He could have a big year in Norman.
You can dismiss some of what you see in a t-shirt/shorts workout but I’m really intrigued with @JalenHurts after watching him work out at @Elite11 and talking to him about QB play.. Much better than the narrative suggests as a player/prospect.. File it away

— Bucky Brooks (@BuckyBrooks) June 30, 2019
Finally, it’s time to get in on futures bets, and one college football writer loves the Syracuse Orange. Barrett Sallee thinks the Orange have a great chance at winning more than six games in 2019. The Orange surprised everyone by finishing 10-3 last season, but the oddsmakers are down on Syracuse’s chances of another strong year. A lot of metrics show that Syracuse was pretty fortunate to win 10 games last season, and Bill Connelly’s numbers have the Orange winning 6.7 games this year. The Orange are replacing a lot of talent too, and they aren’t projected to be large favorites in any of their ACC games.
... (; podcast; Cuse Militia)

Cuse Militia Podcast: Episode 147- Syracuse Football, Verbal Commit Recap! (; podcast; Hoppe & Leonard)

On this week’s edition of Fizz Radio, Jonathon Hoppe and Tim Leonard attempt to explain how a credible organization could set the Syracuse O/U win total at five games. Plus, 2020 OL/DL Josh Ilaoa stops by the show to discuss his weekend visit and more.
You can catch Fizz Radio every Saturday morning at 9 a.m. on TheScore 1260 in Syracuse. Don’t forget to follow us wherever you get your podcasts by searching “Orange Fizz” for all of our audio content.

Most important 2019 game for every ACC football team (; James)

Every game during the college football season matters, but that does not mean every win holds the same weight.

Matchups against conference opponents and annual rivals typically carry some extra juice during the regular season. If those opponents are ranked in the national polls, then an added layer of importance can be added to these games.
Predicting which games will be the most pivotal before the season even begins is not an exact science, and much of it is dependent upon the results that happen before the game in question kicks off. However, it is still possible to project which teams may be ranked and, therefore, in contention to play in some of the biggest games.

For other teams that may not be ranked, there are points on the schedule that can be circled as potential turning points. A win could provide the spark a team needs to exceed preseason expectations, while a loss at that point could mean the season takes a turn for the worst.

Scroll up to see our picks for the most important game on the 2019 schedule for each ACC team.

It will be an uphill challenge for any team in the Atlantic Division to unseat the Clemson Tigers, who have won four consecutive ACC titles. For Boston College, its most important game comes after facing the Tigers, though. A home game against the Florida State Seminoles will take place on Nov. 9. That comes after back-to-back road matchups against Syracuse and Clemson. A win here before the bye week would Be pivotal for the Eagles since they end the regular season against Notre Dame and Pitt on the road. (; Parker)

ACC Football has looked of late like a group that is the Clemson Tigers and the rest of the dwarfs, so why not add a team that went 1-11 last season?

Across the world of the Atlantic Coast Conference, the league seems to have more the most part 15 schools playing in a majority of the sports with one big exception – the ACC football world is still with 14 teams despite the league adding Notre Dame a few seasons ago in every sport the Fighting Irish play except that one.
We won’t get into how the conference caved to the men from South Bend on that one (we’ve got a whole summer left to do that) because there is a simple way to solve this whole problem – and it involves the plan from those in charge at the ACC to bring in great basketball programs that don’t add all that much for the most part to football.

Ladies and gentlemen, fresh off their seven wins combined over the last three seasons…put your hands together for what should be the 15th playing school in the world of ACC football for the Florida State Seminoles and everyone else to play: the UConn Huskies!

ACC at its all-time best in 2018-19 (; Teel)

Every Power Five conference can gloat about 2018-19.

Pacific 12 schools led the nation in NCAA team championships for the 14th consecutive year with 13. Every Southeastern Conference member finished among the top 60 of the Directors’ Cup all-sports standings.

The Big 12’s Oklahoma produced a second straight Heisman Trophy winner in Kyler Murray and saw upstart Texas Tech reach the NCAA men’s basketball tournament final. The Big Ten continued to print money and hired the Power Five’s first African-American commissioner in Kevin Warren.

But as a collective, the ACC busted out the barbecue and sweet tea, authoring its finest sports year since the league’s 1953 inception.

The conference produced marquee national champions in Virginia men’s basketball and Clemson football, plus four more NCAA titles from North Carolina field hockey, Florida Statewomen’s soccer, Duke women’s golf and Virginia men’s lacrosse.
ACC teams have swept football and men’s basketball in the same academic year four times — 1981-82, 1990-91 and 2016-17 were the other occasions — but never with as many overall national championships.

Moreover, with Louisville and Florida State advancing to the College World Series, the ACC was close to becoming the first conference since the Pacific 8 in 1972-73 to win football, men’s basketball and baseball national titles in the same academic year.
A national-best four ACC schools — Florida State, Virginia, Duke and North Carolina — finished among the Directors’ Cup’s top 10. U.Va. topped the Capital One Cup standings for Division I men’s sports, three spots north of Clemson, while North Carolina and FSU were Nos. 3 and 4 on the women’s side.

UNC, North Carolina State and Notre Dame each won four ACC championships, followed by Florida State with three, Virginia, Virginia Tech, Wake Forest and Miami with two, Louisville, Pittsburgh, Duke, Clemson and Georgia Tech with one. The Hokies and Seminoles shared men’s indoor track.

Here’s a school-by-school rundown, in order of Directors’ Cup finish.

FLORIDA STATE (No. 7 Directors’ Cup): The Seminoles defeated North Carolina in the NCAA women’s soccer tournament final and gave iconic baseball coach Mike Martin a stirring farewell with a College World Series appearance. They won ACC titles in women’s soccer, men’s indoor track and softball. The big issue for new athletic director David Coburn — Stan Wilcox left for an NCAA executive position — is a football program that’s 12-13 the past two seasons.
VIRGINIA (No. 8): The fourth top-10 finish in the last six years for the Cavaliers, who have never placed lower than 30th, the latter a distinction that only UNC shares among ACC schools. This marked the fourth academic year in which Virginia won multiple NCAA team championships. Men’s lacrosse and women’s rowing were the Cavaliers’ ACC titles.
DUKE (No. 9): The Blue Devils bested Wake Forest in the NCAA women’s golf title match, reached the national semifinals in men’s lacrosse and women’s tennis and the Elite Eight in men’s basketball, the latter with national Player of the Year and No. 1 NBA draft choice Zion Williamson. Men’s basketball also was Duke’s lone ACC champion.
NORTH CAROLINA (No. 10): By any measure, and for any sport, Ashley Hoffman had an historic season, captaining UNC to an undefeated field hockey season and winning national Player of the Year and MVP of the ACC and NCAA tournaments. The Tar Heels were also among the final four in men’s and women’s tennis, women’s lacrosse and women’s soccer. They won ACC championships in field hockey, women’s tennis, women’s lacrosse and baseball and brought Mack Brown back to replace Larry Fedora as football coach.
NOTRE DAME (No. 17): The ninth consecutive top-25 Cup finish for the Fighting Irish, who were a victory away from repeating as NCAA women’s basketball champions and placed third nationally in combined fencing and fifth in men’s ice hockey. Notre Dame won ACC titles in men’s cross country, women’s basketball and men’s and women’s fencing.
NORTH CAROLINA STATE (No. 26): This marks the Wolfpack’s second-best Cup finish, lower only than last year’s 15th, providing Boo Corrigan, former ACC commissioner Gene Corrigan’s son, a solid foundation as he succeeds retiring athletic director Debbie Yow. State’s men’s and women’s swimming teams placed fourth and seventh, respectively at the NCAA meet, and joined with wrestling and women’s cross country as ACC champs.
LOUISVILLE (No. 35): Mallory Comerford’s victories in the 100 and 200 freestyle at the NCAA women’s swimming championships, baseball’s College World Series semifinal appearance, an ACC men’s soccer title and an encouraging first season for men’s basketball coach Chris Mack were among the Cardinals’ highlights. Louisville selected Appalachian State’s Scott Satterfield to replace Bobby Petrino as football coach.
WAKE FOREST (No. 36): National runner-up finishes in women’s golf and men’s tennis fueled the Deacons’ best Cup finish in a dozen years. They also won league championships in those sports and a bowl for the third straight football season. The dean of ACC athletic directors, Ron Wellman, retired after 27 years and was replaced by Wake Forest graduate John Currie.
VIRGINIA TECH (No. 49): Redshirt freshman Mekhi Lewis became the first Hokies wrestler to win an NCAA title, and men’s basketball reached its first Sweet 16 since 1967. But this is Tech’s lowest Cup finish in 14 years. Wofford’s Mike Young replaced Buzz Williams (Texas A&M) as basketball coach, and men’s track won ACC titles indoors and outdoors.
SYRACUSE (No. 54): Football won 10 games for the first time since 2001 and posted its first winning ACC record since joining the conference in 2013.
PITTSBURGH (No. 137): A first Coastal Division football title and second straight ACC women’s volleyball championship perhaps ease the sting of the lowest Directors’ Cup finish ever by an ACC school and lowest this year among the 65 Power Five programs.


Here are the 3 best offensive players in Clemson football's best decade (; Gramlich)

The 2010s are almost over, and for many Clemson football fans, this decade is the one you will tell your kids and grandkids about when they ask about the glory days.
Clemson has won at least 10 games in every season of the decade except for 2010. The Tigers have won five ACC titles, made four College Football Playoffs and won two national titles. No one will forget what Clemson has been able to accomplish these past nine seasons, and there is still one season to be played before we can truly put a bow on the 2010s.

Clemson’s success in this decade has occurred mainly because the Tigers have had elite talent at nearly every position year in and year out. That being said, which player should be considered the best at each position during the past nine seasons?
It’s time to crown a Clemson All-Decade team. Let’s start with the three main positions on offense.

Quarterback: Deshaun Watson
Clemson would not be enjoying the greatest decade of football in school history if not for elite quarterback play. The Tigers have had excellent signal callers since 2010. It all began with Tajh Boyd, who quarterbacked the Tigers from 2011 through 2013 and had a tremendous career. He left Clemson with 133 total touchdowns and 11,904 passing yards, both school records.
However, Deshaun Watson is Clemson’s quarterback of the decade. The two-time Heisman finalist put up impressive numbers, of course, but he also never lost to South Carolina, led Clemson to two College Football Playoffs, two ACC titles and their first national title in 35 years.

You might ask, well what about Trevor Lawrence? Lawrence had an incredible freshman season and also won a national title, but he has played only one season. There’s a chance this could change after 2019, but Watson is without a doubt the answer right now.
Winning chance: Here's how Trevor Lawrence could give Clemson its first Heisman Trophy winner

Running back: Travis Etienne
Since 2010, Clemson’s rushing attack has been led by three main running backs – Andre Ellington, Wayne Gallman and Travis Etienne.
Ellington ran for more than 1,000 yards in both 2011 and 2012 and finished his career with 35 total touchdowns. Next up was Gallman, whose career has been underappreciated in many ways. He played just three seasons but scored 36 total touchdowns and ran for 3,416 yards while helping Clemson win the 2016 national title.

Both of these guys had incredible careers.
... (RX; HM)

Best 2019 Games - SouthernPigskin

From SouthernPigskin: Top Ten 2019 “Can’t Miss” ACC Games

10 - Florida State at Virginia, Sept. 14
9 - N.C. State at Boston College, Oct. 19
8 - Miami at Pitt, Oct. 26
7 - Syracuse at Florida State, Oct. 26
6 - Virginia at Pitt, Aug. 31
5 - Clemson at N.C. State, Nov. 9
4 - Miami at Florida State, Nov. 2
3 - Virginia Tech at Virginia, Nov. 29
2 - Virginia Tech at Miami, Oct. 5
1 - Clemson at Syracuse, Sept. 14
Top 10 ACC Non-Conference Games of 2019
10. Old Dominion at Virginia Tech, Sept. 7
9. Clemson at South Carolina, Nov. 30
8. Duke vs. Alabama, Aug. 31
7. North Carolina vs. South Carolina, Aug. 31
6. Florida State at Florida, Nov. 30
5. Pitt at Penn State, Sept. 14
4. Virginia at Notre Dame, Sept. 28
3. N.C. State at West Virginia, Sept. 14
2. Miami vs. Florida, Aug. 24
1. Texas A&M at Clemson, Sept. 7 (RX; HM)

Links, news and rumors - 7/1/19

From the mind of JFann of AllSportsDiscussion: Why MarkPacker and WesDurham defending and promoting the ACC is so important.
One of the reasons I started this blog several years ago is I didn't think the ACC got a fair shake by many in the media. The ACC didn't have many supporters in the national media during it's struggles of the BCS and early 2010s expansion era. @dannykanell was one of the first real national pro-ACC voices that I remember...
I don't want to see their media members take it to the level of bashing of other conferences. It wreaks of insecurity. That doesn't mean ACC Network members shouldn't promote the ACC. That's where ACC Radio Hosts @MarkPacker and @WesDurham come in. We already know they know the conference and it's history, but I like what I've seen from them this when it comes to defending the ACC...
It's going to be so refreshing watching and listening to a channel that will be the counter to the other conference hype machines.
Ian Boyd at SBNation thinks the Miami/Florida game will come down to aggressive defense.
Miami’s offense and Florida’s defense are designed to beat each other. The Gators’ safeties might decide who wins that matchup.
...The Gators’ biggest danger area: What happens when a rebuilt offensive line goes up against a strong, experienced D?
By the way, it's now only 54 days until the Canes and Gators kick off the 2019 season...

Also from AllSportsDiscussion: XFL will have its share of ACC talent.
... (RX; HM)

Realignment Winners, Losers - 2019

Pat Forde of Yahoo Sports asked "How has the Decade of Realignment played out?" "Who has the Decade of Realignment blessed, and who has it punished?" This is the list of winners and losers he came up with - along with his ACC-related comments:

UConn, the Pac-12, Nebraska, Brigham Young, Texas, Central Florida/Houston, Dan Beebe and the Mountain West Conference


You could argue that Rutgers has been the biggest dumpster fire of the Big Ten’s eastward expansion, and you’d be 100 percent right. But the Scarlet Knights were admitted to The Club by the Big Ten, whereas Maryland already had Club membership and chose to abandon its ACC niche for more money, less identity and roughly identical competitive struggles. The Terrapins’ football record their final five years in the ACC: 24-38. Their record the first five years in the Big Ten: 25-37. Basketball has fared slightly better in the Big Ten than the latter years in the ACC, but the lather produced by Tobacco Road rivalries cannot be replicated by playing Iowa and Minnesota.

The Cardinals make both lists — first, the bad. The climb into The Club came at a cost: architect Tom Jurich was forced out after financial controversies and successive basketball scandals; the hoops dirt also cost Hall of Fame coach Rick Pitino his job and the school a national championship banner; another NCAA investigation is ongoing; and Bobby Petrino 2.0, a hire that earned nationwide mockery, ended in a 2-10 debacle. What price ambition?

Syracuse transitioned its heavyweight basketball program from one great league to another and experienced a football breakthrough in 2018. Life After Boeheim looms as an unsettling venture, but that would be the case in any league.

The Panthers rode the Orange’s coattails to a destination they scantly deserve, given the futility of the overall athletic program, but don’t ask the Panthers to apologize. If The Club is dumb enough to take you, accept. Football did win the Coastal Division in 2018 (while going 7-7) and basketball should be crawling out of the smoking crater that was the Kevin Stallings Era.

As mentioned above, the Cardinals are not without baggage accrued during their status climb. But they enhance the ACC basketball product, are very good in several non-revenue sports and should be on the rebound in football after the 2018 implosion.

Notre Dame
Which football program went nowhere during realignment and still won big? This one. The Fighting Irish got everything they wanted out of the shuffling: a quality ACC home for basketball; enhanced competitiveness for Olympic sports; academic compatibility with the elite schools in the league; continued football independence; and continued NBC money it doesn’t have to share with anyone. No wonder Jesus is still signaling touchdown.

also Texas A&M and
West Virginia (RX; HM)

Most Valuable 2019 Home Tickets

A year ago today I posted a list of the most-valuable 2018 ACC home games, based on ticket prices.

I see no reason not to do the same thing this year.

Here are the ticket prices for home and neutral-site games for each team, sorted by lowest-price tickets available according to VividSeats (with most-expensive visitor highlighted):

Va Tech$59.00
Wake Forest$51.00
Florida State$49.00
NC State$39.00
CLEMSONTexas AM$214.00
Florida State$89.00
Ga Tech$51.00
Boston Coll.$42.00
Wake Forest$27.00
DUKENotre Dame$45.00
NC A+T$14.00
Ga Tech$10.00
Boise St*$49.00
NC State$18.00
Alabama St$6.00
GA TECHGeorgia$118.00
NC State$28.00
Va Tech$27.00
LOUISVILLENotre Dame$78.00
W Kentucky$68.00
E Kentucky$3.00
Boston Coll.$2.00
Va Tech$24.00
Ga Tech$15.00
C Michigan$6.00
NC STATEClemson$124.00
E Carolina$56.00
Ball State$37.00
W Carolina$36.00
... (RX; HM)

Most 4th Qtr Choke Jobs

From the research of David Hale...

Most blown 4Q leads
since 2012:

Arkansas - 16
UNC - 14
WKU - 14
Iowa St - 13
Texas - 12
SDSU - 12
UNLV - 12
FAU - 12
GT - 12
Indiana - 12
Ole Miss - 12
Ball St - 12
So Alabama - 12
Penn St - 11
UVA - 11
Pitt - 11
K-State - 11
Oregon St - 11
Iowa - 11
La Tech - 11

Four ACC teams make the top 20 list of most blown leads (aka "choke jobs") over the last 7 years.

Here are reminders of some of the most painful losses during that stretch...
On September 4th, 2017, Georgia Tech held a 28-14 lead with just 13:08 left to play in the game, but somehow managed to blow the 14-point lead, then lose the game in double-overtime before a national ESPN audience and a Chick-fil-A Kickoff Game. Last year's come from ahead loss to USF was embarrassing, but nowhere near as painful, given the opponents.

... (; Langley)

Last week I wrote about the College Football Playoff’s unjust treatment of independents. Now, I am not the kind of person who just likes to point out a problem. I’m an action guy, who likes solving issues. Sometime’s it gets me in trouble, because some people just want me to listen, but I like finding a solution. Without further ado, here is a proposed college football realignment to solve this issue.
Notre Dame Fighting Irish
The Fighting Irish are an outlier here. They do not have to join a conference, unlike the other five. Notre Dame has made a BCS championship game (then promptly got spanked by the Tide), and a CFP game (promptly getting spanked by the Clemson Tigers). Notre Dame has the history and recent success necessary to remain independent.

However, they still could to make their lives easier. They made the College Football Playoff after going 12-0. If they joined a conference, then they could lose a game (or even two) and still make it. But which conference? Outside of football and hockey, the Fighting Irish compete in the ACC. This is not as appealing to Notre Dame football. By joining the ACC, they would have to go through Clemson, the U (who are about to turn a corner), as well as Syracuse who can keep up with teams like Clemson. There is one conference that, while on paper seems harder, could actually be a better choice.
In a college football realignment, Notre Dame should look to join their hockey team in the Big Ten. Yes, the Big Ten has better teams across the board. However, there currently is a power vacuum. With Ohio State dealing with their issues, Penn State not having a starting QB (yet), the only real competition is Michigan. While all of this could change by the time a realignment could take place, the Big Ten is the most enticing option for Notre Dame.

While the Big Ten has good teams, a few are not that good. The Fighting Illini are one of them. In this college football realignment, the Illini are going to the MAC. They have not won the Big Ten in 18 years and haven’t had a winning season in eight. Even with that winning season, the Illini have not had a conference record above .500 since 2007. By bringing Notre Dame in, and kicking Illinois out, the Big Ten will become more competitive. This will bring in higher viewership, and more money to the teams.

Army and UMass Amherst

This a little discount double check for you. Army and UMass should both go to the American Athletic Conference. Yes, this college football realignment is about joining a conference to make the College Football Playoff. However, some schools are not good enough to join a Power Five Conference yet. Army is one of those teams, and should join Navy in the American. This will bring the rivalry to new levels, but also give it more meaning as both teams will be trying to win the AAC. So why does UMass get the nod?
The Mark Whipple era in Amherst was a disappointment. Going 16-44 during his time there is atrocious. The hiring of former Florida State OC/QBs coach, Walt Bell, could provide a spark to the Minuteman offense. In addition to this, by focusing on the same teams for most of their games, this will provide UMass the tools to be a much improved program.

Who leaves in this realignment?

The AAC is in a weird place right now. UConn is leaving to return to the Big East, who does not offer football. At the same time, the AAC is not letting UConn stay solely for football. So that’s one team out, what about the other? It’s rare to see a recent National Champion leave their conference, but that is just what UCF is going to do. They feel wronged by the CFP committee, and will join the ACC to prove it. Why the ACC? As I said before, it is still a relatively weak conference outside of a few schools, and the SEC is too tough top to bottom. By going through the ACC, they could have a chance to play for the conference championship.


60-Second Syracuse: A stain on the city’s sports history (PS; Croyle)

In a 2012 article, the sports website Bleacher Report compiled a list of the 200 moments which shaped Major League Baseball history.

The number one selection was not a surprise.

The breaking of Major League Baseball’s color barrier by Jackie Robinson in 1947 not only changed the sport forever, but writer Rocco Constantino wrote, had an impact on “American society as whole so profound that it is hard to quantify.”

Robinson joined the Brooklyn Dodgers in 1947, but the year before played with their top minor league club, the Montreal Royals of the International League. He played his first game with the club in Jersey City on April 18, 1946, in front of 52,000 raucous fans at Roosevelt Stadium.

A week later, on April 24, Robinson and the Royals played at Syracuse’s MacArthur Stadium.

For a moment which seemed to be of such historical importance, it is kind of shocking to see how little publicity Robinson’s debut in Syracuse received.

“Montreal moves in with a revamped lineup from that which copped the league title last year,” the Post-Standard said when previewing the series. “Most interesting of the new Royals is Jackie Robinson, second-baseman and the first Negro player to be signed for organized ball in the modern era of the game.”


Hokie Mark

Scout Team
Apr 15, 2013
Does it make sense to you guys that tickets to the Clemson home game ($68 on Vividseats) costs more than tickets to the rest of the schedule combined? ($61). No doubt it IS the best game, but that's awfully top heavy to me. (BTW, Miami is even more top-heavy: Florida tix $219, all others combined $79)


Co 2020-21 Iggy Award Winner MPG (special again)
Staff member
Aug 15, 2011
Does it make sense to you guys that tickets to the Clemson home game ($68 on Vividseats) costs more than tickets to the rest of the schedule combined? ($61). No doubt it IS the best game, but that's awfully top heavy to me. (BTW, Miami is even more top-heavy: Florida tix $219, all others combined $79)
I think it does make sense. Clemson moves the needle so much more than anyone else in the ACC, in large part because they are so much better than anyone else in the conference.

Everyone Syracuse plays seems to be struggling these days to some extent except the Tigers.


May 5, 2013
Does it make sense to you guys that tickets to the Clemson home game ($68 on Vividseats) costs more than tickets to the rest of the schedule combined? ($61). No doubt it IS the best game, but that's awfully top heavy to me. (BTW, Miami is even more top-heavy: Florida tix $219, all others combined $79)
Law of Supply and Demand.

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