Co 2020-21 Iggy Award Winner MPG (special again)
- Aug 15, 2011
National Rocky Road Day celebrates chocolate, marshmallows, and nuts on June 2nd. In the United States, the most popular way to eat Rocky Road is ice cream.
Although Rocky Road comes in many variations, traditionally, the ice cream includes chocolate ice cream, nuts, and marshmallows. Today, there are variations with vanilla ice cream, chocolate chips, and almonds.
People have been enjoying this delicious combination for many years. There are varying accounts of the origin of this ice cream, as there often is with the creation of something new. Sometime during the late 1920s, William Dreyer used inspiration from his partner Joseph Edy’s chocolate candy to make rocky road ice cream. Dryer did something he was probably told a hundred times not to do. He used his wife’s sewing scissors to chop up marshmallows and walnuts and added them to chocolate ice cream. Of course, it tasted good, so he was probably forgiven for using her good sewing shears for anything but fabric!
Position Breakdown: Running Backs — 2021 Syracuse Football preview - The Juice Online (the juice; Cheng)
As we countdown to kickoff in September, we’re going to be doing a unit-by-unit preview each week over the summer. This week, we’re discussing three major storylines around the running backs.
Syracuse has depth again
Syracuse was a little thin at running back last year.
Initially stocked full of talent, the Orange quickly lost Abdul Adams and Jarveon Howard prior to the season, when the two opted out because of COVID-19.
That left third-string RB Jawhar Jordan as the starter, who struggled amassing only 72 yards in three games before suffering a season ending injury.
Dino Babers was forced to turn to his fourth string running back, freshman Sean Tucker, who finished with 626 yards and four touchdowns despite a leaky offensive line and an overall inept offense.
Though Jordan entered the transfer portal in January, Syracuse got great news in February, when Adams and Howard opted to return to SU for the fall.
Jordan, Tucker and Howard join returning backup Cooper Lutz, who moved from wide receiver to running back in 2020, and finished second in rushing with 246 yards and a touchdown.
That gives Syracuse four rushers with experience heading into the fall as opposed to last year, when they had zero.
Where’s the beef?
Syracuse rushed for just 92.0 yards per game on the ground last year, which was 121st in the NCAA. Part of the reason for that was because of the Orange’s offensive line, which was rated among the worst units by Pro Football Focus.
Another reason is because Chris Elmore, a fullback/tight end for his first three years at Syracuse, was forced into playing interior line with the lack of depth up front.
How Syracuse Football Uses Technology in Recruiting (SI; McAllister)
The role technology plays in recruiting has been on the rise over the last decade. The reliance on technologies increased exponentially during the pandemic that impacted nearly the entire 2021 recruiting cycle and a large portion of the 2022 cycle. How does Syracuse utilize technology to help evaluate players? We recently spoke to Syracuse Director of Recruiting Kramer Cook to find out.
Q: How much did technology help the evaluation process as things changed due to the pandemic?
Kramer Cook: "I think Hudl was huge obviously. Zoom obviously was another enormous piece of the puzzle. At Syracuse it is a hurdle to get some of the guys that we’re recruiting down on the eastern seaboard. We’ve got guys from Texas, California on the team. Our footprint can go nationally. Obviously the eastern seaboard is the biggest piece of it, but it’s tougher to get guys on campus, so having a virtual visit where we can sit down in a living room and we can kind of give them the overview of the competitive advantages of Syracuse and what we have to offer. That was huge for us, because now they don’t have to worry about hopping on a plane or traveling four to five hours. You’re able to kind of get your selling points out to the kid through just in their living room, and that’s something we have never done in the past. Usually it’s an in-home visit or calls or things like that, so utilizing that was enormous. And then the second part of this is the position meetings with the coach. In a cycle before pre-pandemic, you’re coming up for junior days and official visits, there’s usually more than one recruit with you when you’re doing these position meetings with the coach. It’s really like kind of a presentation from your position coach on what they have to offer, what their core qualities are, how they view, say, offensive-line play right.
Elite Corner Jahlil Florence “Excited” to Visit Syracuse First – Orange Fizz – Daily Syracuse Recruiting News & Team Coverage (orangefizz.net; Amendolara)
Jahlil Florence has options. Good options. The San Diego corner is being recruited by Oregon, Michigan and Washington. But he’s flying all the way out to Syracuse for his only official visit of the month (6/24), and is fired up about meeting with Dino Babers and co. He told 247 Sports there’s a familiarity already built in. Syracuse has a bounty of young defensive backs. In fact, the secondary might be the most exciting position for the Orange for a number of years. Duce Chestnut leads a group that could be one of the best in the ACC in the neat future. How about adding another talent from California?
Florence is a 6’2″, 180 lb. corner in the Class of ’22. He’s got 16 offers, and while originally it looked like he might visit Ann Arbor in a few weeks, he’ll likely wait until the fall to see Michigan on a game day. Better yet, Florence proudly displays his 3.75 GPA on his Twitter profile.“I’m excited to get out there and check them out. They have a lot of coaches on that staff from San Diego. One of my coaches, Jason Carter, knows Tony White really well and my dad and coach Babers have connected really well too. Both are military so we built a really good bond already.” – Jahlil Florence
“I like the defense a lot too and feel I would fit in really well there. They play a lot of man coverage and feel I could come out there and compete early for playing time. The coaches have been straight forward with me this whole time about how they would use me so I definitely have real interest in their program right now.”- Jahlil Florence
He has plenty of offers from schools out west, like Arizona, Oregon State, San Diego State, Fresno State and Boise State too. So if it comes down to staying close to home, Florence has good options. If he wants to see a different part of the country, we can also promise him blizzards and fewer hours of sunlight in a month than he usually gets in a day.
Florence has bloomed in his last two seasons, and turned into a very intriguing prospect (hence the offers from Michigan and Oregon). He’s a very athletic corner with great speed. At a showcase in February in his hometown he won MVP honors for defensive backs and clocked in at a 4.5 40, the fastest of the event.
Recruiting in a Pandemic (SI; McAllister)
How college and high school coaches leveraged technology to adapt to a recruiting landscape that suddenly changed due to a pandemic.
Entering the spring of his junior year, just before the start of the most pivotal part of the recruiting cycle, Wayzata High (Minn.) offensive lineman Tyler Magnuson was filled with hope and anticipation. Anticipation of opportunities to showcase his talent. Hope that college programs would recognize that talent.
On March 13, 2020, all of that came crashing down. In response to the coronavirus pandemic that shut down nearly all aspects of society, the NCAA instituted a pandemic dead period that prohibited all face-to-face contact. Magnuson's plan to attend spring practices, participate in regional and school camps, and take unofficial or official visits to schools were all eliminated.
"It was definitely a big challenge," Magnuson, who signed with Syracuse in December, said. "I feel like some days I'd be on phone calls for the majority of the day trying to feel out programs over the phone. It wasn't ideal, but it kind of worked out in the end. A lot of it done through YouTube, and all of the virtual tours schools provided. It was just a lot of virtual stuff. I really wish it was in person, but with covid and stuff, we couldn't have that."
Loss of Key Recruiting Tools
Evaluating high school players is an inexact science in many ways. Despite that, coaches rely on certain tools in order to properly assess a recruit's skillset and fit within that program. Those tools often rely upon the now prohibited face-to-face contact.
Every recruiting cycle includes evaluation periods. During normal cycles, this allows coaches to travel across the country to various high schools in order to watch players in person. This includes observing practice, attending workouts, or watching games. Evaluating not only the skillset but also certain measurables. The evaluation periods were eliminated in the 2021 recruiting cycle.
Michigan's Mike Hart helps create new summer youth program in Ypsilanti (detroitnews.com; Chengelis)
When Latavius Murray was growing up in Syracuse as a budding football and basketball standout, he drew his focus and guidance from Mike Hart, who was a handful of years older and representative of a success story, having starred at Onondaga Central before moving on to Michigan where he would become the all-time leading rusher.
Hart, now in his first season as Michigan’s running backs coach, had several mentors while growing up, including Troy Weaver, then a Syracuse basketball assistant and now the Pistons general manager, and Rob Murphy, who also had been at Syracuse and is now the president and GM of the Pistons' new G League franchise. They also would check on Murray, now in his ninth season as a running back in the NFL, who had crystallized his approach to his college and professional careers by watching Hart.
Helping underprivileged kids find their way is important to both men, who merged their foundations two years ago into the Hart and Tay Train Foundation. They are part of a new summer youth community program in Ypsilanti — Community Leadership Revolution (CLR) Academy — that will launch Saturday from noon to 1:30 p.m. at Sycamore Meadows and is free to children in kindergarten through eighth grade from surrounding areas. CLR Academy is scheduled every Saturday through August at the same time and location and the kids will learn basic soccer, basketball and football skills.
On The Block On Demand 6-1 (ESPN; Radio; Axe)
Brent discusses the big weekend in lacrosse, specifically the Syracuse women losing in the national title game. Plus, Dino Babers’ contract details following the extension have come out, what does it mean in terms of their chase of Clemson in the ACC?
ACC Football: Over/Under Predictions on DraftKings Win Totals for 2021 Season (athlonsports.com; Lassan)
DraftKings O/U: 3
Take out the 10-3 mark in 2018 under coach Dino Babers and Syracuse is just 14-33 in his other four years. After a 1-10 record last season, Babers needs to show progress to avoid the hot seat chatter. A healthy Tommy DeVito or Mississippi State transfer Garrett Shrader at quarterback will help an offense that averaged only 17.8 points a game. The defense gave up 463.9 yards a game last fall but returns 10 starters.
Early Call: Pass
Syracuse had bad luck with injuries and a couple of opt outs last season, so this team is probably better than its 1-10 record. However, both sides of the ball are a question mark once again. Additionally, non-conference games at Ohio, Rutgers and Liberty are toss-ups. There’s just too much uncertainty to feel good about the over or the under here.
Revenue Gap: 4-Year Trend (RX; HM)
Revenue Gap: 4-Year TrendLuke DeCock wrote that the "Revenue gap starts to close in ACC Network’s first year" - referring to the financial gap with the other power conferences. That made me want to see if those words were true...
To do that, I needed average payouts per school for each conference, by year. That sounds easy, but when I went back and did the research I found that these guys... lie. Or at least, exaggerate. They'll do things like report projected revenue instead of actual payouts. Or they'll give next year's payouts for their league to compare against what everyone else reported this year. There's a whole lot of grand-standing going on; that said, I have no doubt that the ACC trails the other four power conferences - it's just hard to know by exactly how much.
With that caveat, let's dig in...
Most Expensive CFB Coaches of 2020 (per win) (RX; HM)
Most Expensive CFB Coaches of 2020 (per win)I really appreciate BGB for this...
Who were 2020's most expensive head coaches in the ACC in terms of dollars per win?
Overpriced:Dino Babers, Syracuse, $3.2 million/win
On the high side:David Cutcliffe, Duke, $1.4 million/win
Mike Norvell, Florida State, $1.2 million/win
Geoff Collins, Georgia Tech, $1.0 million/win
Not bad, actually:Justin Fuente, Virginia Tech, $0.85 million/win
Dabo Swinney, Clemson, $0.83 million/win
Scott Satterfield, Louisville, $0.77 million/win
Bronco Mendenhall, Virginia, $0.77 million/win
Apparently, Downright bargains:Jeff Hafley, Boston College
Manny Diaz, Miami
Dave Doeren, NC State
Pat Narduzzi, Pitt
Dave Clawson, Wake Forest
Mack Brown, North Carolina
Virginia Tech football: Devon Hunter is back (gobblercountry.com; Manning)
The Virginia Tech Hokies have reinstated safety Devon Hunter, per a statement by head coach Justin Fuente on the VT football Twitter account.
“In accordance with Virginia Tech student-conduct protocols and in conjunction with Virginia Tech Athletics administration, Devon Hunter has been cleared to return to the Virginia Tech football program effective immediately,” the statement read.
“Devon has demonstrated remorse for his actions and understands the expectations for him going forward. He recognizes and appreciates the opportunity to return to the program.”
Hunter, who was suspended indefinitely last fall just before the Hokies began the 2020 season and charged with one felony and one misdemeanor related to a domestic issue, reached a plea agreement last month, where he expressed remorse for his actions.
https://www.syracuse.com/news/2021/...ses-pods-who-requires-covid-vaccines.html(PS; $; Coin)
To see a show this season at CMAC, you’ll have to prove you’ve been vaccinated against Covid-19. To catch a concert at Beak & Skiff, you’ll need to buy tickets in a “pod” and wear a mask unless you’re in your seat.
At Saratoga Performing Arts Center – at least for the first few shows -- you’ll need to buy tickets in pods and present evidence that you’ve been vaccinated or tested negative.
After a lost concert season in 2020, venue operators and promoters are hungry to bring as many fans as possible this summer. They’re struggling to adjust to changing state regulations while bringing in as many fans as possible and trying to recoup some of last year’s lost profits.
“It’s a tough game,” said Donny Dixie, general manager of Apple Hill, the outdoor concert venue at Beak & Skiff, in Tully. “Every week it changes. We have to do this this week, then, no, we don’t have to do it next week.”
In early March, Gov. Andrew Cuomo said entertainment venues could reopen, with a host of restrictions, including masks, social distancing and capacity limits. Earlier this month, he threw open the gates to 100% -- if everybody is vaccinated. A 33% capacity restriction is gone, but if venues don’t require proof of vaccination, they have to space people out, effectively restricting capacity to one-third anyway.
That leaves operators with a dilemma: Implement and enforce a complex system of spacing and masking that restricts crowd size, or pack the place with only the vaccinated, risking the wrath of unvaccinated fans.