Orangeyes Daily Articles for Monday - for Football | Syracusefan.com

Orangeyes Daily Articles for Monday for Football

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Welcome to V-J Day!


V-J Day, or Victory over Japan Day, marks the end of World War II, one of the deadliest and most destructive wars in history. When President Harry S. Truman announced on Aug. 14, 1945, that Japan had surrendered unconditionally, war-weary citizens around the world erupted in celebration.

"This day is a new beginning in the history of freedom on this earth. Our global victory has come from the courage and stamina and spirit of free men and women united in determination to fight."

President Harry S. Truman

SU News

Virginia football opponent preview series: Syracuse (dailyprogress.com; Barber)


Syracuse football coach Dino Babers has never faced Virginia — the two schools haven’t met since 2015, the season before he took over the Orange. But Babers took note of what the Cavaliers’ were doing on offense last year.

“I looked at the numbers they were putting up,” Babers said.

So, when Babers shook up his coaching staff in the offseason, he hired two UVa assistants — offensive coordinator Robert Anae and quarterbacks coach Jason Beck — to transform the Syracuse attack, despite having never worked with either man.

“We’re looking forward to it,” said quarterback Garrett Shrader, who said the team knows the record-setting results the coaches had with UVa’s passing attack last season. “We’re going to be explosive this year.”

At Virginia, the duo helped run an offense that averaged 34.6 points per game, the fourth best mark in the ACC. Quarterback Brennan Armstrong became a star under their tutelage, leading the league in passing and setting single-season school records for passing yards, touchdowns and completions.

Armstrong said Shrader will have a good experience working daily with Beck.

“I grew up with him four straight years of my college career,” said Armstrong. “I wouldn’t be in the position I am without him there and the staff that was there.”

Anae and Beck were brought to Syracuse to bring balance to an offense that ran nearly twice as often as it threw in 2021 — 491 runs to 287 passes. It’s an interesting proposition, considering Anae’s play-calling at UVa never approached any semblance of balance, especially last season when the Cavaliers threw a league-high 553 times, while running a league-low 339.

Both teams were understandably leaning on their stars — Armstrong at UVa and Heisman candidate running back Sean Tucker at Syracuse.

But after finishing 5-7 and missing a bowl game for the third straight season, Babers decided the team needed to revive its flagging passing attack.
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Amidst Offseason Change, Syracuse Players Have Lofty Goals For 2022 Season (SI; Gross)

Day four of fall camp on Friday was the first day in pads since the spring. As the Orange battled the heat, the defense had to battle an offense with a new component attached to them: Robert Anae. The new offensive coordinator is tasked with taking a really skilled offense and turn them into an ACC powerhouse.

Led by junior linebacker Mikel Jones, Syracuse’s defensive core has been lively early on. The first-team All-ACC selection is looking to set the standard for the younger group.

“That was the difference between making a bowl game and not making a bowl game,” Jones said. “So, I tell them just focus on the little things. All the little things that you think don’t matter, they matter.”



The Orange lost three games last year by a field goal. If the result had been flipped in two of the three contests, they may have been eligible for a bowl game. But Jones is not alone in his efforts to acclimate the younger players to Syracuse’s style of play.

Caleb Okechukwu, a redshirt junior who played in all 12 games last season, is leading the charge on the line of scrimmage after 21 tackles, two tackles for a loss and one sack in 2021. The redshirt-junior says the defensive line looks good thanks to good coaching and a lot of confidence.



“Coach Achuff does a good job of coming out and getting on [us],” Okechukwu said. “Fundamentals, that’s what we are working on right now. Just the fundamentals every day. Worrying about the little things so we can be great on the field.”

Just like Jones, the defensive lineman knows that doing the little things make the difference between being a good football team and taking it to the next level. Luckily, Okechukwu has a plethora of talent behind him in the secondary who are all on the same page.
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OVER 5 HOURS OF SYRACUSE FOOTBALL HIGHLIGHTS

Syracuse Recruiting Roundup: Ibrahim Barry, Zion Tracy - The Juice Online (the juice; Sears)

It’s been a busy week in the world of Syracuse recruiting, and we start with the football team as we head into mid-August.

Syracuse will host 2023 defensive back Zion Tracy on an official visit from Oct. 28 – 30, he tweeted. Tracy, a three-star prospect from Long Island (NY) Lutheran, will also be taking an official visit to Penn State on the weekend of Sept. 9. His offer list includes Rutgers, UMass and Temple, among others.

Syracuse was the latest school to offer 2024 offensive lineman Colin Cubberly from Arlington (NY) High. He holds offers from Texas, Rutgers, Pitt, Duke and Boston College, among others.

Two prospects Syracuse had been finalists for chose other schools. 2023 three-star offensive lineman Naquil Betrand committed to Texas A&M over fellow finalists Auburn, Kentucky, Georgia, Penn State and Syracuse. Syracuse was also in the final five for 2023 three-star defensive lineman Ted Gregoire, but he ultimately committed to Vanderbilt. Rutgers, Tulane, and Penn were the other finalists.

The Syracuse coaching staff was also busy over the past week inviting prospects for unofficial visits for the 2022 season opener against Louisville. The Orange will be hosting more than 15 players that weekend, including 2023 athlete Ibrahim Barry of North (MD) County High, he tweeted. He also announced his list of top eight schools, and Syracuse made the cut along with Virginia Tech, Rutgers, Pitt, Toledo, JMU, West Virginia and South Dakota.

Two other prospects on campus I wanted to highlight are William Love, a four-star wide receiver from Woodrow (NJ) Wilson High, and Dyrell Howard-Dolson a 2024 running back from Canisius (NY) High. Love, a 2024 prospect, holds offers from a slew of blue bloods that includes Georgia, Michigan State, Ole Miss, and Penn State. As for Howard-Dolson, this will be his third visit to campus, having previously visited in April and May. Howard-Dolson currently holds an offer from UMass, and has also visited West Virginia and Pitt. He is the cousin of current Syracuse defensive back Duce Chestnut.
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SU football OL recruit commits to Texas A&M (PS; Leiker)

Naquil Betrand, a three-star offensive tackle prospect from Philadelphia, has committed to Texas A&M.

Syracuse was one of Betrand’s final six schools he had been considering, along with Georgia, Auburn, Kentucky and Penn State.

He announced his decision Saturday evening on social media.


Home #GigEm #12thMan pic.twitter.com/bifG0rK8km
— naquil betrand (@NBETRAND1) August 6, 2022

Betrand, ranked as the No. 78 offensive tackle in the country, had previously tweeted that he would be on an official visit at Texas A&M July 29-31. He made official visits to Auburn and Kentucky in June. Syracuse hosted him in May.

Texas A&M assistants Elijah Robinson and Steve Addazio headed up Betrand’s recruitment. Both have extensive ties in the Northeast, with Robinson one of the nation’s top recruiters and Addazio a former assistant at Syracuse and head coach at Temple and Boston College.

The 6-foot-7, 310 pound offensive tackle will attend St. Frances Academy in Baltimore for his final year of high school. He announced the decision to transfer high schools the same week he announced his top six, though the tweet has since been deleted.
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Z4SCQANWCVCORPHPEMFTRFROAY.jpg

Syracuse Orange quarterback Garrett Shrader (16) hands the ball to Syracuse Orange running back Sean Tucker (34) against Virginia Tech, Oct. 23, 2021. Hannah Pajewski | Contributing photographer


Axe: 22 questions about SU football for the 2022 season (PS; $; Axe)

Happy football, everyone.

The 2022 Syracuse football season is underway with the Orange just wrapping its first week of training camp.

Here are 22 questions to ponder before SU’s opening game against Louisville at the JMA Wireless Dome on Sept. 3.

1. Time to play the QB shuffle again?

Unlike the start of camp last year with a competition in the air, Garrett Shrader has been designated the firm starting quarterback to start the 2022 season.

There is no doubting Shrader’s mobility as he had 781 yards and 14 rushing touchdowns last season.

In the passing game, Shrader only topped 200 yards twice last season and his completion percentage (52.6%) was the fourth-worst among FBS quarterbacks.

2. Who’s Number Two?

The most important competition of training camp: Who’s the backup quarterback?

Justin Lamson seemed to have distanced himself for the gig after a stellar spring game, but he’s out for the season with a leg injury.

JaCobian Morgan may have a slight edge given his game experience, but SU head coach Dino Babers says it’s an open competition.

Michigan transfer Dan Villari joined in January. Syracuse then picked up Florida transfer Carlos Del Rio-Wilson in May.
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Early observations from Syracuse football’s camp (TNIAAM; Wall)

While we’re not on the scene for Syracuse Orange football camp, we can still make some observations from the clips and observations of those in attendance.

The big news from the first practice was Chris Bleich sliding into the center spot and forming an offensive line group with Dakota Davis and Kalan Ellis at the guards and Matthew Bergeron and Carlos Vettorello at the tackle positions. We know Steve will be watching closely to see if this continues throughout camp but it’s looking like Dino Babers and Mike Schmidt aren’t afraid to shuffle the players to find the best group.

VIP: Syracuse OL Chris Bleich is back on the field after another offseason spent rehabbing. Why his hips are feeling better than last year and what his return could mean for the crucial position group: Why Chris Bleich's return could pay off big time for Syracuse football offensive line pic.twitter.com/Puh4GHraKI
— Stephen Bailey (@Stephen_Bailey1) August 5, 2022

Syracuse also showed a new offensive wrinkle during goal-line work when the receiver group was comprised of bigger players like Isaiah Jones (more on him in a bit), Oronde Gadsen II and Devaughn Cooper. This could mean Robert Anae wants to have bigger wideouts in the red zone or it’s just some mind games being played during the media period. Adding bigger receivers could force defenses to put their safeties wide to help on the outside, leaving their linebackers 1 on 1 against Sean Tucker in space...and we like that. You might even say we’re very #pl34sed.
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Troy Nunes is an Absolute Podcast: We’re Talking About Practice! (TBIAAM; podcast; Pregler)

The Syracuse Orange started fall camp, so after months of subtly mentioning that this was a football show, Steve, Christian, and Andy go full football season preview mode and talk Orange Football for an hour!

In this week’s edition of the Podcast, the guys talked about...

  • We’re talking the Otto-Man Empire and Ottoman Empire. Because it’s A HOT ONE.
  • We talk Domes. Because our Dome is a great Dome but somehow a unique Dome.
  • What is the access reporters have to the Orange football team this year? What can we expect out of that coverage this fall?
  • We start with the offensive line and breaking down footage made available by Stephen Bailey.
  • Chris Bleich is now a Center. What does this mean for the rest of the unit?
  • HOMEFIELD APPAREL (Use promo code NUNES for 10% off your first order)
  • We talk Sean Tucker and his less than pleasing performance in the passing game.
  • The tight end room is remarkably thin, and why is that worrisome for the Orange this year?
  • Put Chris Elmore on Paul Giamatti’s body. IYKYK
  • What’s up with the defensive line?
  • We play “Andy was in Greece, let’s watch him react to silly thing!”
Syracuse Football: SU misses out on 3-star offensive tackle in 2023 class (itlh; Adler)

One of the top offensive tackles across the country, who had Syracuse football among his small group of finalists, is headed to the powerhouse Southeastern Conference.

Consensus 2023 three-star offensive lineman Naquil Betrand said on social media that he has verbally committed to Texas A&M. He had previously given a commitment to Colorado this spring but then reopened his recruitment back up.


All told, the 6-foot-7, 310-pound Betrand earned more than 20 scholarship offers throughout his recruiting process. The Orange offered him this past April, and Betrand took both an official visit and an unofficial visit to the Hill.


HOME #gigem pic.twitter.com/RvCuGug2aH
— naquil betrand (@NBETRAND1) August 6, 2022

Not too long ago, Betrand disclosed a top six of Syracuse football, Texas A&M, Kentucky, Penn State, Auburn and Georgia, which is the defending College Football Playoff national champion.
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Former Syracuse punter Sterling Hofrichter signs with Dolphins (PS; Mink)

Former Syracuse punter Sterling Hofrichter has signed with the Miami Dolphins, joining the team in the preseason to compete for the starting job.

Hofrichter will compete with 13-year veteran Thomas Morstead for the job.

The team announced the signing of Hofrichter on Friday, waiving Tommy Heatherly to create room for Hofrichter on the 90-man roster.

Hofrichter was cut by the Tampa Bay Buccaneers last month to add tight end Bug Howard to their roster. Tampa Bay’s plans at punter shifted after drafting former Georgia punter Jake Camarda in the fourth round of this year’s draft.

Hofrichter was a seventh-round pick by the Atlanta Falcons in 2020, averaging 39.3 net yards per punt as a rookie that year.

He appeared in two games during the 2021 season with Tampa, averaging 34.2 net yards on six punts.

Morstead, 36, is a former Pro Bowl punter and former Super Bowl winner with the New Orleans Saints.


On The Block On Demand 8-4 (ESPN; radio; Axe)

Brent discusses the challenges of building a winning football program in the Northeast. Later, Jordan and Josh join Brent for the Mount Rushmore draft of play by play broadcasters.

Ep. 421 - The ACC Weekly Podcast previews 2022 ACC football with @PickSixPreviews (podbean.com; podcast; The ACC Weekly Podcast)

@Hokiesmash_ASD and @TalkinACCSports preview 2022 ACC Football with @PickSixPreviews Brett Ciancia of writer and owner of the college football preview

Links - ASD edition - 2022 Aug 8th (RX; HM)

Links - ASD edition - 2022 Aug 8th

Better than 50% Chance of ACC Pac 12 TV Media Merger?


‘Perhaps better than 50-50’ was how Jon Wilner assessed the chances of the #Pac12 arriving at a new TV deal with the #ACC.
The Pac-12 and the ACC are highly unlikely to merge... However, television agreements between conferences — a way of not only creating revenue and scheduling slots, but strengthening bonds between conferences so that their futures are tied together — seem very possible.
...

5 College Football Power Five Sleeper Teams For 2022 (CFN; Fiutak)

Which teams in the Power Five conferences should rise up and be sleepers in 2022? They might not win their respective conferences, but they could make a whole lot of noise.

Did anyone really see Baylor coming as a team that would take the Big 12 Championship and finish in or near the top five?

Who had Pitt winning the ACC title, or Michigan State being a Big Ten power, or Ole Miss finishing 11th in both polls?

We got the Rebels right in last year’s Power Five Sleeper Teams piece. Taking the L on Stanford, squibbed singles on Boston College and Texas Tech, and roped a triple on Purdue.

These teams almost certainly won’t win their respective conference championships, but they should be in for interesting seasons and give their fan bases a good time.

College Football Power Five Sleeper Teams

ACC: Florida State Seminoles

There was a time not all that long ago when Florida State was automatically considered a national championship contender. It had the talent, the coaching, and everything in place to be special year after year after year.

Jimbo Fisher restored the glory, but it all fell apart in the opener against Alabama to start the 2017 season, and the program never recovered.

FSU Preview | Top 10 Players | Schedule Analysis

The Noles won 78 games, three ACC Championships, and a national title between 2010 to 2016. Since then they’ve gone a putrid 26-33.

Florida State lost 19 games from 1987 to 2000.

Head coach Mike Norvell isn’t going to put the program back into superpower territory just yet, but after years and years and years of painful offensive line play, the Noles might really have a decent front five. At least it’s full of veterans.
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Analysis: Where UNC stands amidst conference realignment frenzy, how TV deals tie in (dailytarheel.com; Monroe)

The economics of college sports is powered by behemoth television contracts that each of the major athletic conferences sign with competing networks. Football, long considered to be the cash cow of most athletic departments, is typically the driving force behind these deals.

For an individual school, this means that the more lucrative its conference's TV deal is, the more revenue that school can haul in annually. This structure incentivizes schools to follow the money and seek out athletic conferences that can pay out better, rather than ones that make more sense geographically.

Oklahoma and Texas shook the college athletics landscape in 2021 when the schools announced they were leaving the Big 12 to join the SEC. In June, when California schools USC and UCLA announced they were leaving the Pac-12 to join the Big Ten, a conference headquartered in Illinois, realignment became a national topic of conversation yet again.

“I would’ve bet my life that would never happen,” North Carolina football head coach Mack Brown said of the move at the 2022 ACC Football Kickoff in July.

Realignment, however, isn’t a new concept in college athletics.

“If you go back and look at throughout the whole history of conferences and schools, there's been a lot of realignment,” Louisville head football coach Scott Satterfield said at the ACC Football Kickoff. “It seems to happen a lot. I was a part of it when I was at Appalachian State. We moved divisions and moved conferences.”

There have been multiple instances of realignment in the ACC, which was formed in 1953 when seven members of the Southern Conference, including UNC, left to form the new conference.

The last major conference realignment frenzy happened in the early 2010s.

In 2012, Maryland — a founding member of the ACC — announced it was leaving to join the Big Ten, effective starting the 2014-2015 school year. Syracuse, Pittsburgh and Notre Dame — save for the Fighting Irish's independent football program — all joined the ACC in 2013, and Louisville followed a year later to fill the gap left by the Terrapins' departure.

What's preventing any of the current ACC member schools from defecting, like Maryland did ten years ago, is a contract that the member schools signed in 2013 called the grant of rights.


Grant of Rights

The grant of rights gives the ACC control over media rights for each of its member schools. Essentially, the TV revenue that a school makes from the ACC’s contract with ESPN goes to the ACC, and that pool of money is evenly distributed among the member schools.

When Maryland left the ACC in 2014, it sparked rumors of other schools doing the same, which could have dissolved the conference. To combat this, the ACC had each member school sign the grant of rights to lock the schools into the conference for the long term.

When the ACC and ESPN announced the formation of the ACC Network in 2016, the ACC extended the grant of rights to last until 2036 instead of 2027, when it was originally supposed to end. However, conferences like the Big Ten and the SEC have more lucrative TV contracts than the ACC.


In the fiscal year ending in June 2020, the ACC generated approximately $500 million. However, in that same time frame, the Big Ten and SEC both reported numbers north of $700 million, and thus their member schools will earn more revenue than ACC schools.

So, if this is the case, why would schools not simply leave the ACC and join the Big 10 or SEC?

Because if a school does this, per the grant of rights, the ACC would still control all revenue that the departing school produces from their home games up until 2036, when the grant of rights expires.


What Happens Next?

An ACC school leaving the conference isn't likely to happen anytime soon.

For this to happen, a school would have to challenge the grant of rights, as well as evaluate its ability to sustain the revenue it would lose as a result of leaving the conference and violating the grant of rights.

“I think you have to be thoughtful, you have to be smart, you have to be strategic," ACC Commissioner Jim Phillips said at the ACC Football Kickoff. "Making a move just to make a move doesn't make any sense.”

At some point in the future, a member school might decide that the money it would lose to the ACC for leaving the conference is worth the additional money it may gain by being a member of the Big Ten or SEC.

So, what does this mean for UNC regarding how the Tar Heels fit in the grand scheme of realignment?

UNC may have to leave the ACC at some point if it wants to keep its 28 varsity sports intact.

As the Big Ten and SEC school’s revenues increase, UNC will be able to devote the same percentage of that revenue to football. In order to keep the football program up to par with the other conferences, UNC will likely have to dedicate a higher percentage of its budget to the program. Increasing the amount of revenue spent on football would cut the budget allocated for other varsity sports. That is unless UNC moves to a more profitable conference.
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ACC football 2022: Predicting each team's record at the end of September (247sports.com; Marsdale)

September is a month that could make or break a team’s goals for the season, and that is more evident than ever in the ACC. With some tricky non-conference matchups and league play mixed in — including several Week 1 — things get really interesting in a league Clemson did not win a season ago for the first time since 2014.

Three of the league's coaches landed on CBS Sports’ Dennis Dodd’s hot seat rankings last month. Those were Florida State’s Mike Norvell, Georgia Tech’s Geoff Collins and Syracuse’s Dino Babers. All three have difficult September slates to navigate.

Florida State faces LSU in New Orleans and has a road contest at Louisville, while Georgia Tech opens with Clemson, hosts Ole Miss and has a tough road trip to UCF. Syracuse plays three of its four games in the month against Power Five opponents. How will all of them fare?

After looking at every Power Five team’s September schedule and ranking the 15 toughest, here is the projected record for each ACC team for the month.

GEORGIA TECH YELLOW JACKETS: 1-3

The slate: Sept. 5 vs. Clemson (Atlanta, Monday), Sept. 10 vs.Western Carolina, Sept. 17 vs. Ole Miss, Sept. 24 at UCF
Wins: vs. Western Carolina
Losses: vs. Clemson, vs. Ole Miss, at UCF
Georgia Tech has 247Sports’ sixth-hardest schedule nationally for September. The Yellow Jackets have never won more than three games in a season under Geoff Collins since his arrival from Temple in 2019, and boy does he have his work cut out for him in the first four weeks of the season. At the least, Georgia Tech must compete in September, and Collins and company might have to steal one in order to keep the chatter down regarding his job security.

BOSTON COLLEGE EAGLES: 3-1

The slate: Sept. 3 vs. Rutgers, Sept. 10 at Virginia Tech, Sept. 17 vs. Maine, Sept. 24 at Florida State
Wins: vs. Rutgers, at Virginia Tech vs. Maine
Losses: at Florida State
In Year 3 in The Heights, Jeff Hafley aims to take the next step, and has an immediate opportunity to do so. The Eagles’ Week 2 road contest at Virginia Tech is without a doubt a tough environment to play in, but the experience of Hafley and third-year starting quarterback Phil Jurkovec — one of the league’s best — hold the advantage over first-year Virginia Tech coach Brent Pry. Rutgers and Maine are more than manageable home games, and despite a loss predicted in the road contest against Florida State, the Eagles could see a vulnerable Seminoles team.

DUKE BLUE DEVILS: 2-2

The slate: Sept. 2 vs. Temple (Friday), Sept. 10 at Northwestern, Sept. 17 vs. North Carolina A&T, Sept. 24 at Kansas
Wins: vs. Temple, vs. North Carolina A&T
Losses: at Northwestern, at Kansas
Duke has four non-conference games to start things off. The home games should be wins, and the other two are far from a difficult challenge despite being on the road. For what it is worth, Duke beat both opponents in Durham in 2021. Do not expect Duke to put Northwestern in a 21-0 first-quarter hole like it did last year, and Kansas showed plenty of signs of life a year ago after its trip to Durham. The Jayhawks upset Texas on the road and also took Oklahoma down to the wire in Lawrence. It would be a big positive if Mike Elko was able to take one of those two games away from home in Year 1 as a head coach.

SYRACUSE ORANGE: 2-2

The slate: Sept. 3 vs. Louisville, Sept. 10 at Connecticut, Sept. 17 vs. Purdue, Sept. 23 vs. Virginia (Friday)
Wins: at Connecticut, vs. Virginia
Losses: vs. Louisville, vs. Purdue

Dino Babers is under pressure, as the Orange have not had success since he led a magical 10-3 run in 2018 in his second year on the job. The Orange see one of the conference's most fascinating players in Louisville quarterback Malik Cunningham to open the season, and he has the potential to give them fits. Syracuse welcomes Purdue, who showed last season that it has no problem winning games on the road, as the Boilermakers knocked off No. 2 Iowa. If the Orange are to reach postseason play this season, a 3-1 mark in September is likely needed.
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Eric Mac Lain raves about current state of ACC football entering 2022 (on3.com; podcast)

On3’s JD PicKell hosted ACC Network’s Eric Mac Lain to discuss the pulse of the conference with just under four weeks until the start of the new college football year. While he predicts another Clemson-dominated year, the rest of the ACC won’t be pulling any punches in a very pivotal 2022 season for the league.

“I think Clemson has been the water that helps all ships rise. I really do. I think the standard that was set by them – it just put a sense of urgency on football,” Mac Lain told PicKell. “For a conference that has been so hyper-focused on basketball for so long – and we’ve seen that, we saw last year – man, what a great performance with the Wake Forest team getting 11 wins. A Pittsburgh team getting to a college football New Year’s Six game, with a team like N.C. State that was so close. And of course, Clemson winning 10 games for 11 straight years.
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Top 5 Returning ACC Linebackers | ACC Football 2022 (clemsonsportstalk.com; video)

The linebacking group in the ACC is one of the conference's deepest and most talented position groups. Virginia's Nick Jackson has been the top tackler in the ACC over the last two seasons.

NC State's Drake Thomas emerged as one of the top players at his position after injuries to teammates forced him to step up and elevate his game. Yasir Abdullah also one of the bes
t pass rushers, sacking opposing quarterbacks 10 times in 2021.

On a talented Clemson defense, Trenton Simpson is seen as another Tiger who could end up as a future first-round selection. Up in Syracuse, Mikel Jones was a 2021 First-Team All-ACC player who led the Orange with 13 tackles for loss. And these are just a few of the great linebackers who will be returning to the ACC in 2022.

Check out our list of the top five returning linebackers in the ACC right now!


Virginia Tech football: Hokies land Canadian pass rusher (gobblercountry; Manning)

The Virginia Tech Hokies added another intriguing athlete to their 2023 recruiting class on Sunday when Canadian edge rusher Ishmael Findlayter officially pledged to the Hokies.

Findlayter is a three-star prospect from Toronto who recently visited Virginia Tech, where he worked out for coaches. Virginia Tech offered Findlayter after seeing him, and after mulling it over, he didn’t wait too long to commit to the Hokies.

At 6-foot-4, 230 pounds, Findlayter has outstanding size. There’s no question that once coaches saw his size and length, they saw a player whose best football was ahead of him.

Findlayter plays high school football for Clarkston North and is the top football prospect in Ontario.

He spoke to Evan Watkins of 247Sports about his commitment to the Hokies, citing the coaching staff as a major reason for his pledge.

“The coaching staff,” Findlayter said. ”I really believe I can become the player I aspire to be under their coaching, and the facilities and school was amazing.”

You love to hear players cite the coaching staff as a reason for their commitment. Finding players like Findlayter is how Virginia Tech first rose to prominence under Frank Beamer. That doesn’t mean Findlayter becomes a star, but you love taking chances with talented, coachable kids with his measurables.

Findlayter is commitment No. 18 in VT’s 2023 recruiting class, which ranks No. 36 in the nation.
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Pac-12 expert evaluates the odds of the conference striking a TV deal with the ACC (usatoday.com; Zemek)

The Pac-12 and the ACC are highly unlikely to merge. Mergers appear to be off the board as realistic outcomes in college sports realignment after a lot of speculation in early July. However, television agreements between conferences — a way of not only creating revenue and scheduling slots, but strengthening bonds between conferences so that their futures are tied together — seem very possible.

Tying the fates of two conferences together means, among other things, that each conference adds protection against future potential attempts at poaching. This is what the Pac-12 failed to do in relationship to the Big Ten, which swooped in and plucked both USC and UCLA.

This is why a multi-conference TV arrangement makes sense.

Jon Wilner of the Wilner Hotline had this to say:


Odds of some kind of TV deal between the Pac-12 and the ACC? — @bfedotin
Pretty good … perhaps better than 50/50.
ESPN could create a media partnership based on each league’s Tier 3 infrastructure, combining the ACC Network with the Pac-12 Network to create more subscribers, and revenue.
For all their problems with distribution, the Pac-12 Networks are on the cutting edge with their remote broadcast technology.
We wrote about that recently, too.
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WVU's path to the ACC (wvnews.com; Hertzel)

Just a couple of days ago, influential sports talk show host Dan Patrick lit the fuse on another round of conference realignment rumors, speaking rationally as he always does rather than the irrational blabber that comes from most talk shows.

Should Patrick’s scenario come to fruition, the announcement on Friday that this year’s renewal version of the Backyard Brawl in Pittsburgh is sold out in a 70,000-seat stadium screams out the message that in the reshuffling of the deck that is college football, WVU is an ace ready to be dealt to the Atlantic Coast Conference to help it keep its place in the Power 5.
Patrick went on the air saying that he had heard that if the Big Ten would finally do the inevitable and add Notre Dame to its restructured conference — and probably Oregon andIn Rework?Yes CDATE@Values ############ Work Center DescriptionQuantityWIP ValueSum of C/O SalesQuantityWIP ValueSum of C/O SalesWIP Value DeltaC/O Sales Delta MSK DIE INSPECTION REWORK 285$94,965$215,76981$13,323######-81641.6789-189388.1 MSK DIE MOUNT REWORK 529$285,133$695,354616$302,217######17083.874441270.48 MSK GENERAL REWORK 982$266,048$400,3151016$324,879######58831.412 MSK MR RACK 253$251,607$287,570457$312,295######60687.9683 MSK Seal Rework 18$4,822$17,6088$2,206$8,018 MSK TEST REWORK 33$16,134$30,72538$12,971###### MSK Troubleshooting 476$344,424$511,603418$338,411###### MSK WIRE INSPECTION REWORK 7759$70,791$81,4017684$91,279###### MSK Wire Rework536$121,932$374,038603$109,267###### Grand Total10871$1,455,857$2,614,38310921$1,506,849###### Washington from the crumbling Pac-12 — it would ignite another bombshell move from the SEC.

Patrick’s theory is that the Big Ten in its next media contract could package Notre Dame and NBC together in it for a tight package that would add what still is the prize jewel of college football when it comes to revenue.

Already having pilfered college football giants Oklahoma and Texas from the Big 12, Patrick reasons the SEC would reach into the ACC to complete the inevitable package move of Miami, Florida State and Clemson should the Big Ten complete a deal for Notre Dame.
That move, bringing those three schools into fold, would give the SEC schools that have won the past seven national championships, 15 of the past 16 and 24 of the past 30.
...


Top 5 Returning ACC Linebackers | ACC Football 2022 (clemsonsportstalkcom;

Kelly Gramlich and Eric Mac Lain talk ACC football - Gramlich and Mac Lain (maclainandgramlich; podcast; Gramlich & Maclain)

Kelly and Mac visit the Tarheel state with UNC Head Coach Mack Brown to learn more about the goals and expectations for the Tarheels in 2022!

ACC Coaches Fired Too Soon/Late (RX; HM)

ACC Coaches Fired Too Soon/Late

Inspired by "Coaches Who Shouldn’t Have Been Fired" by Mike Farrell Sports, here are some ACC coaches who were unwisely terminated:

Paul Pasqualoni, Syracuse, 2004.

I realize this is a bit controversial insofar as some think his firing was justified. However, consider this: 14 seasons as the head coach of the Orange, Pasqualoni took them to the Fiesta Bowl twice and the Orange Bowl once - and the Fiesta Bowls were both before there were any BCS automatic qualifiers. His overall record was 107-59-1 (.644), with seven seasons of 8+ wins (three 10-win seasons, three 9-wins, and one 8-wins) and only one losing season (2002). He was fired after a bowl loss dropped him to 6-6. The Orange did have to vacate those six wins due to academic fraud by some players, however.
...


ACC FB Gotta Do Better! (RX; HM)

ACC FB Gotta Do Better!

Correction: I forgot NC State's bowl was also cancelled.

Here's a look at last Bowl Season's projected ACC winners and losers according to BCFToys:

2021 Bowl Game Projections/Results


Projected WinnerProjected LoserFinalACC result
Air ForceLouisvilleW 31-28lost as predicted
Iowa StateClemsonL 13-20upset winner
North CarolinaSouth CarolinaL 21-38upset loser
Notre DameOklahoma StateL 35-37upset loser
PittsburghMichigan StateL 21-31upset loser
Virginia TechMarylandL 10-54upset loser
Wake ForestRutgersW 38-10won as predicted
Additionally, three ACC teams were bowl-eligible but either opted out or had their bowl cancelled:
  • Boston College
  • Miami
  • Virginia
  • NC State
...

Twitter Followers 2022 Aug 4th (RX; HM)

Twitter Followers 2022 Aug 4th

Twitter followers, by CFB team:


This might correlate better with reality than the study done by Sports Market Analytics. At least, it makes more sense. I mean, my gut tells me that Clemson has more of a fan following than Boston College, but maybe it's just me?
  • Clemson 1M
  • Notre Dame 638K
  • Florida St 435K
  • Miami (FL) 286K
...

Just 3 more weeks... let the hype begin! (RX; HM)

Just 3 more weeks... let the hype begin!

Week 0 is almost here...

Saturday, August 27

Live football returns to the ACC Network!

Duquesne
at Florida State,
5:00pm on ACCN


Florida A&M
at North Carolina,
8:15pm on ACCN

__________
ESPN 2022 CFB Hype Video - let the hype begin!

ONE WEEK CLOSER TO KICKOFF

@yungblud pic.twitter.com/kOD261beci
— ESPN College Football (@ESPNCFB) August 5, 2022

Starts with an arial view of Clemson's Death Valley. I saw Florida State cheerleaders, Notre Dame players touching the "Play Like a Champion Today" sign, Howard's Rock (also Clemson), Deion Sanders, Mario Cristobal wearing a "U" sweatshirt, Brian Kelly wearing an LSU shirt, another field-level shot of Doak Campbell Stadium, another Seminole cheerleader, a Wake Forest player strumming his air guitar,
...


Weekend Links - 2022 Aug 6th (RX; HM)

Weekend Links - 2022 Aug 6th

From CBS Sports: undervalued teams entering 2022 season


ACC: North Carolina

Odds to win ACC championship: +2000
2021 was supposed to be the year for the Tar Heels in coach Mack Brown's third season, but the Tar Heels flopped with a 6-7 record.
...


NCAA Football 23 - Clemson Tigers vs Syracuse Orange Week 6 - Dynasty Season 2022-23


Other

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What can Syracuse learn from Rochester about rebuilding a neighborhood split by a highway? 7 tips (PS; $; Breidenbach)

Over the next decade, Syracuse city planners will have a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to invent something new as the state tears down the Interstate 81 overpass.

Rochester, a Thruway neighbor with the same history, has already started. The state has filled in part of a sunken four-lane highway that split neighborhoods in that city for half a century. Now, there are 500 brand new apartment units, new streets built with pedestrians and bicyclists in mind and three big chain hotels under construction.

The project is not immune from criticism. There is little public green space and some space originally planned for retail was abandoned for indoor parking.

“Instead of the moat, now we have a wall,” activist Shawn Dunwoody said about the dense line of apartment buildings in place of a sunken highway.



What can Syracuse learn from Rochester? Flower City neighborhood activists are here to help the Salt City.

Even opponents say, it’s fascinating that Rochester city leaders pulled off the $22 million Inner Loop East project – replacing a formidable barrier with a walkable, livable community.

But neighborhood activists regret that they did not get involved until plans were well underway. Now, as Rochester starts to fill in the next stretch closer to their homes, they have a lot of opinions about the way it should be handled differently.

In July, Rochester Mayor Malik Evans showed Syracuse Mayor Ben Walsh and Deputy Mayor Sharon Owens around the first part of the project. They walked by the new apartment buildings, the new 120-room Hampton Inn and the expanding Strong Museum of Play.

Next, the bus tour stopped for the mayors to watch the cars whiz along the Inner Loop North, the next stretch of moat to be filled in.
...
 
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