Orangeyes Daily Articles for Monday - for Football |

Orangeyes Daily Articles for Monday for Football


No recent Cali or Iggy awards; Mr Irrelevant
Aug 15, 2011
Welcome to National Mutt Day!

National Mutt Day celebrates mixed breed dogs, and was created by Colleen Paige, a pet and family lifestyle expert and animal advocate, who also created days such as National Dog Day, National Puppy Day, and National Cat Day. The goal of the day is to embrace, save, and celebrate mixed breed dogs by creating awareness about the great numbers of them in animal shelters that are in need of a home. Mixed breed dogs make up the largest percentage of dogs that are abandoned and euthanized, and make up about 80% of dogs in shelters. In an effort to further raise awareness, National Mutt Day takes place on two days during the year. The hoped for result of the day is that people visit animal shelters and adopt a mixed breed dog, or possibly donate their time and money to shelters.

SU News

(PS; $; Leiker)

LeQuint Allen Jr. wanted to let the news get out on its own.

When the Syracuse football running back found out via an email from the university his season-long suspension over a December fight was lifted, he didn’t call anyone to share the news.

He said he told his mom, and that was that.

Even though the sophomore is a rising star in the Salt City — and is already a superstar here in his hometown — he’d rather keep his head down and focus on getting better, he said.

The first football work Allen has done with a large group of athletes this summer — albeit some as young as 5 years old — was at his second annual LeQuint Allen Jr. Football & Cheer Camp hosted at Lakeside Middle School in his hometown of Millville, New Jersey.

It’s a free camp he puts on with the help of a handful of youth football coaches and some other Millville grads, including former Jacksonville Jaguars running back and Temple alum Ryquell Armstead.

“Definitely (being) out here, it gave me the same memories of being back on the field with other teammates and stuff like that,” Allen told Saturday following the camp. “Going through the drills and the workouts and stuff like that, and the stretches, that feeling definitely came back to me. I just can’t wait for what’s next.”

Boston College 2023 Opponent Previews: Syracuse (Week 10) (; Wolfe)

2022 was a tale of two halves for the Syracuse Orange. They started 6-0 but lost the next five before defeating Boston College on the road in their regular season finale to secure a Pinstripe Bowl berth. In those first six games, the average score was 36-13 (including a 59-0 defeat of FCS Wagner); in the next five, 18-34. On offense, the Orange lost a program legend in Sean Tucker to the NFL; on defense, they lost several veterans at all levels of the defense to graduation, the transfer portal, and the NFL. Syracuse will also introduce two new coordinators on both sides of the ball, although both are familiar with the existing schemes.

The Orange have another relatively easy opening portion of the schedule (vs. Colgate, vs. Western Michigan, at Purdue, vs. Army) but hit a gauntlet of the best teams in the conference after that (vs. Clemson, at North Carolina, at Florida State). In the season's final five weeks, we’ll get a better measure of what Syracuse really is, as they face several analogous programs, including Boston College. Last year, Syracuse closed their regular season with a comeback win against BC, rallying from a 6-17 deficit to win 32-23 against a decimated and demoralized Eagles team.

Syracuse is currently on a two-game win streak in this rivalry against Boston College. They also lead the series 33-22 and have led it 5-4 since Syracuse joined the ACC in 2013. This game is also being played on a Friday night, the first of two weeknight games on BC’s schedule. The Eagles will benefit from a long week after this game but have another road game on a short week the following week. This will also be the Orange’s second consecutive weekday game, as they travel to Virginia Tech for a Thursday night game the week prior before returning home to play the Eagles. Personally, I appreciate the ACC trying to spread the schedule out to get more eyes on these games, but lumping these games so close together seems like a disservice to all parties involved.

Note: information and statistics are from Syracuse's team website,,, Pro Football Focus, and Sports Info Solutions.


Syracuse OC Jason Beck (Photo:

27.7 Points per Game (70th), 374.8 Total Yards per Game (76th), 232.3 Passing Yards per Game (67th), 142.5 Rushing Yards per Game (74th); 37% 3rd Down Conversion Rate (86th), 87.5% Red Zone Conversion Rate (t-35th); 6.54 Tackles for Loss Allowed per Game (t-97th fewest), 3.31 Sacks Allowed per Game (t-119th fewest), 14 Turnovers Lost (t-24th fewest); -2.72 Offensive EPA per Game (90th), 0.023 Offensive EPA per Play (65th), 0.036 Offensive Rushing EPA (63rd), 0.012 Offensive Passing EPA (68th)

This transitional year could be challenging for Dino Babers and the Syracuse offense. After a year in the post-Eric Dungey wilderness,

Babers leaned on Sean Tucker as the focal point for the Orange’s offense over the next three seasons. With Tucker off to the NFL, he could swing back toward his Spread roots, leaning on a tough mobile quarterback and talented receivers.

A change in offensive coordinators (Old: Robert Anae, New: Jason Beck) could help facilitate that change, although Beck is an Anae protege.

Garrett Shrader returns as Syracuse’s starting quarterback, his third year with the team, and as the starter. Shrader took a significant step forward as a passer after Robert Anae took over for Sterlin Gilbert.

With Anae at the helm, the offense leaned harder into the run game but also deployed more unique play calls instead of just relying on spread formations and RPOs. Shrader plays an aggressive, perhaps reckless at times, style of football, so it’s fortunate that his backup, Carlos Del Rio-Wilson, has gotten some playing time in the last few years.

At running back, the Orange have the unenviable task of replacing a program legend in Sean Tucker. He finished with the third-most rushing and scrimmage yards in Syracuse history, the sixth-most rushing touchdowns, and the fourth-most touchdowns from scrimmage. Tucker accounted for just under 27% of the Orange’s total yards from scrimmage in 2022.

The next man up is expected to be sophomore LeQuint Allen, who started in relief of Tucker in the bowl game against Minnesota. Allen ran for 94 yards, averaging over six yards per carry, but did not score, and he fumbled one. Juwaun Price, a transfer from New Mexico State, will back up Allen; Price had a productive 2021 for the Aggies but has not seen the field much since. Syracuse is pretty thin at the running back position, so if Allen goes down, things could take a turn for the worse.

Where the Orange are thin and inexperienced at the running back position, they are the opposite at the wide receiver and tight end positions. Oronde Gadsden II is the star in this position group. He’s technically listed as a tight end and broke several program records for a tight end, but he’s essentially just a super-sized slot receiver. Nevertheless, he was a consensus First-Team All-ACC player.

Damien Alford, another massive receiver (6’6”, 211), is Syracuse’s primary outside threat and could be due for an uptick in targets as the offense becomes more pass-heavy. Maximilian Mang, the Orange’s real tight end, is almost used exclusively as a blocker (seven targets, 64 routes, 252 passing snaps), but his size (6’7”, 262) makes him an intriguing option. Trebor Pena, a converted running back, could be asked to take on a larger role as an outside receiver, along with speedy deep threat D'Marcus Adams (27.8 Average Depth of Target, 30.0 Yards per Reception).

The Orange only return two starters on the offensive line, which could contribute to an offensive regression. Matthew Bergeron (LT) departed for the NFL, while Carlos Vettorello (C) and Dakota Davis (RT/LG) ran out of eligibility. Both starting guards, Christopher Bleich and Kalan Ellis return, but they were relatively average. Enrique Cruz Jr. took over as the starter at right tackle late in the season, although he will most likely replace Bergeron on the left side.

Josh Ilaoa will most likely take over at center, while Richmond transfer Joe More will most likely start at right tackle. There’s a lot of change in this group, but besides Bergeron, this group wasn’t overwhelmingly dominant, so perhaps some new blood could be an improvement.

Keeping Up With The 315 (ESPN; radio; The 315)

Brian Higgins ends the week pondering what will happen with the ACC, as it seems to be the only conference that has not been impacted by the recent realignment. Next, Chat GPT ranks the Top 10 wide receivers in Syracuse football history and almost makes it through the list without a hitch. Finally, it’s Friday which means the Man Who Sort of Knows has his best gambling picks for the weekend.

Syracuse Orange: If the ACC was to expand, here are teams to consider (itlh; Adler)

As conference realignment moves and chatter continue to percolate, it will be interesting to see if anything transpires within the Atlantic Coast Conference, where our beloved Syracuse Orange is a member.

The latest development, which happened in recent days, is that Pac-12 Conference squad Colorado will be heading home, so to speak, to the Big 12 Conference, according to a statement from the Big 12 on July 27.

Now, the Big 12 has added four other schools, BYU, Cincinnati, Houston and UCF. Big 12 members Oklahoma and Texas will be leaving for the Southeastern Conference. Pac-12 teams Southern California and UCLA will be bolting for the Big Ten Conference.

A statement from the Commissioner.
— Big 12 Conference (@Big12Conference) July 27, 2023

It’s no secret that the Big Ten and the SEC are the dominant leagues in collegiate athletics. The ACC, though, appears to be trying to hold off the Big 12 for the No. 3 spot. Speculation is that the Pac-12, ultimately, will be toast.

An ESPN report from David Hale notes that ACC commissioner Jim Phillips is saying his league “continues to actively consider adding teams but has not found enough value in any expansion option.”

Could the Syracuse Orange and its ACC peers soon have new members within their ranks?

This week and in recent months, speculation has swirled around the Internet about current ACC members potentially leaving this conference, whether it’s Florida State or others. But the ACC’s grant of rights deal, which runs until 2036, is pretty airtight, from what I gather, meaning if an ACC squad wanted to bolt, that would prove extremely expensive and also could result in drawn-out legal issues.

When ACC officials and athletics directors conducted conference meetings this spring, an agreement was forged on a new postseason revenue-distribution model, “which would provide a larger slice of postseason revenue for teams that participate in the College Football Playoff and other revenue-generating events,” according to Hale.

Some reports this week suggest that the ACC possibly expanding could be a preventative measure to halt, or at least slow down, the growth of the Big 12.

Hale’s article said that ACC leaders have looked at potential expansion options, with targets such as West Virginia, SMU, Oregon and Washington. West Virginia, to me, makes a lot of sense. I’m not high on SMU as an ACC member, although it is located in Dallas, which is one of the largest metropolitan areas in the country.

Brett McMurphy, a college football insider with Action Network, reported this week that the Big 12 plans to add “between one and three schools to join Colorado in 2024.” The Big 12 will first target Pac-12 schools, McMurphy said.
... (SI; McAllister)

Class of 2024 Heritage Hall (OK) High athlete Andy Bass has trimmed his list to three schools and Syracuse made the cut. Along with the Orange, Bass listed Oklahoma and Kansas State as finalists. He has taken official visits to Syracuse and Oklahoma, while his offer from K-State is as a preferred walk-on.

Bass officially visited Syracuse in early June and loved the trip.

"Visit was a great time," Bass said. "It was really cool to get to see what coach Beck and coach Babers were envisioning for me as well as the plans for the new facilities. If you look at the way coach Becked used Keytaon Thompson at Virginia it would be similar to that. I won't really have a position because I'll be throwing, running, catching and being used as a decoy. They were both every enthusiastic towards me though and said they aren't recruiting anyone similar."

Since his trip to Syracuse, Oklahoma offered and hosted him for an official visit. Their plan for Bass is to use him as a running back and wide receiver. The 5-11, 200 pounder was also on the Sooners' campus for an unofficial visit recently.

Syracuse football recruit spotlight: 2024 OL Willie Goodacre (cbssports; video; Finneral)

Syracuse football recruit spotlight: 2024 OL Willie Goodacre

Final Thoughts From ACC Kickoff (; Griffin)

Two days removed from the ACC Kickoff event in Charlotte, there are still plenty of storylines to digest. Whether it’s the excitement from both Syracuse and Pittsburgh about the Yankee Stadium game, Florida State’s quest to dethrone Clemson, or the new 3-5-5 scheduling format, there was and is plenty to dissect. Three things in particular stand out from the week, from a conference-wide perspective and for Syracuse as its own entity.


Dino Babers referred to the ACC as “a conference to be reckoned with” where “anybody can beat anybody”. It’s hard to envision Virginia Tech usurping Florida State in Tallahassee this season, but he makes a very valid point. The Seminoles and Clemson are the clear frontrunners in the conference, but up and down there’s sky-high potential. NC State reunited OC Robert Anae and QB Brennan Armstrong, a duo that broke records at Virginia. Head Coach Mike Elko and underrated QB Riley Leonard have Duke on the rise. Brent Key’s words should have Georgia Tech fans ready to run through a wall. Elsewhere, North Carolina may have the best QB in the country not named Caleb Williams in Drake Maye, Louisville and Miami have strong coaches with Jeff Brohm and Mario Cristobal, Pittsburgh is always tough, and Wake Forest and Boston College both have potential despite roster losses. That’s not to say Syracuse has no chance to succeed, rather that it won’t come easy.


Gone are Anae and Tony White, in come Jason Beck and Rocky Long. Garrett Shrader described Beck as a very loose coach that wants to see his team play fun, and Marlowe Wax described Long as a “football guru”. Very complementary words. Starting with Beck, he knows Shrader well given that he was a quarterbacks coach before moving up to OC. QB1 also touched on the assortment of weapons he has to work with, citing five or six potential breakout candidates on the offensive end (Oronde Gadsden expressed a similar sentiment). If one of them (or more) realizes that potential, how good does Beck look? As for Long, it isn’t talked about enough that he is the creator of the 3-3-5. Wax mentioned that Coach White’s piece of the puzzle is somewhat intact, but Long is inserting his vision into it. That’s exactly what you want to hear. In what could be a make-it-or-break-it season for Babers, the performances of the coordinators he hired could either secure or destroy his job security.


Even if it wasn’t addressed word for word, conference realignment thoughts floated throughout the event. Right from the offset, Commissioner Phillips addressed the prowess of the ACC from both an academic and athletic prowess, citing the number of national titles won across all sports in the process. It was almost as if Phillips was pitching to the so-called “Magnificent 7” why those schools should stay in the conference. The timing of it could not have been better too (or worse depending on how you look at it). Colorado became the latest Power Five school to jump ship, bolting the PAC-12 for the Big Ten. Additionally, rumors surrounding Florida State leaving the conference circulated even more. No team spoke directly about conference realignment during the week, but both Babers and Pitt Head Coach Pat Narduzzi praised the quality of competition the ACC provides. Regardless of how often words of encouragement were spoken, the threat is there.

ACC News

Did Justin Fuente ruin Virginia Tech? Can anyone beat Clemson, FSU in '23? ACC mailbag (; $; Raynor & Navarro)

It’s time for part 2 of the ACC mailbag. Last week, the focus was more on off-the-field topics such as realignment, branding and TV deals. Now, it’s time to talk football.

However, before we get back to your questions, I wanted to clear something up from last week. Eric V. asked a question about The CW and if the announcement that the network had secured exclusive broadcast rights to 50 ACC football and basketball games per season through 2026-27 would increase revenues for ACC schools.

My original answer — that more eyes on the ACC would immediately equate to more revenue for schools — isn’t currently the case. The ACC’s contract is with ESPN, which then sub-licenses to Raycom, which will now be producing games for The CW. Raycom previously had a deal with Bally Sports, but Bally’s owner — Diamond Sports Group — filed for bankruptcy in March and got out of its contract with Raycom in June. That opened the door for Raycom to strike a deal with The CW. So it’s a revenue-neutral deal for the ACC in the sense that no school will take a hit, and the league will also not receive additional dollars because the ACC’s contract is with ESPN and not Raycom or The CW.

But it’s still positive for the ACC in the sense that The CW is much more accessible nationwide — it reaches 100 percent of U.S. television households — than Bally was. Maybe that will create more big-picture opportunities in the future, but at present, this news does not impact ACC schools from a revenue perspective. My apologies to Erik V. and all of you who read our mailbag for the mistake and for any ensuing confusion. Shout out to Todd K. in the comments for helping break this down, as well. This stuff is tricky! Now onto football. — Raynor

Is it worth it for FSU to buy out GoR? (RX; HM)

Is it worth it for FSU to buy out GoR?

Are the Seminoles about to make a huge mistake? Let's run the numbers...

Lately I'm seeing rumors posted about Florida State's possible plan to exit the ACC early. These seem to emanate from the FSU 247 board, where someone had posted that FSU is seriously looking to get out of the ACC immediately and pointed out that the school would need to notify the conference by August 15th, or else the school would have to wait another two full seasons before the next window to exit.

Apparently there is something to the August 15th deadline [LINK]:

Any school planning to leave the ACC in the next year would have to notify the conference in writing by Aug. 15...

That leads me to ask two questions:

  1. Will Florida State submit a withdrawal notice?
  2. Would it benefit FSU, financially, to do so?

I'll address the second question first...

I'm hearing rumblings that FSU may want to borrow the money to buy their way out of the ACC. Would that make financial sense to do that? If we assume a buyout of the Grant of Rights would need to at least cover the school's portion of the media payouts, which Forbes reported to be $36M/school average (now until 2036), that would come to
14 years X $36 million = $504 million
So an early exit would probably cost as much as $504M, plus the standard exit fee (3X the current ACC payout per school) of about $120M, for a grand total of $624 million! Now, it's not likely that Florida State - or any other school - is coming up with that much cash, but assuming they have a definite invitation to either the SEC or the Big Ten, perhaps they could finance it. Again, assuming they could do that, what would the payments be like?

If we go with 8% interest, a 15-year loan would cost about $74 million per year - too high! What about a longer loan? If they stretched it out for 30 years, the payments drop - but only to about $55 million per year. The bottom line is, that's just a HUGE loan, and a pretty big risk, but it's not totally out of the question. Schools get loans like that for rennovating stadiums on a regular basis.

2023 ACC Kickoff Summary (RX; HM)

2023 ACC Kickoff Summary

The 2023 ACC Media Days / Kickoff event is now over. What did we learn?

1. ESPN and the ACC Network continue to warm up to ACC football.
Let's face it - when the ACCN was launched, ESPN saw the ACC as their basketball conference. All of ESPN's football eggs were in the SECN basket. However, as ACC teams continue to prove that they can not only compete with the SEC but actually beat them in football - and as the SEC continues to perform better than ever in basketball - ESPN is starting to realize that what they actually have is two, complete college sports conferences. ACCN programming (which is controlled by ESPN) is slowly beginning to reflect that reality, with enhanced football coverage. Exhibit A is the fact that this year's ACC Kickoff was three days long instead of the usual two. Exhibit B is this statement from the Commissioner:

Our schools and fans will immediately benefit from significantly increased ACC football television exposure on ABC and ESPN platforms.

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

What a time it was in Charlotte for ACC Kickoff! KG & Mac recap the week & give their ACC Champion, Order of Finish & Player of the Year picks! Presented by Ingles Markets. (ASD; Fann)

Boston College

Jeff Hafley and Boston College are at a crossroads. Hafley enters his 4th season at Boston College with zero bowl wins, zero 7+ wins seasons, and a 9-17 ACC record. This is not what Boston College hired Hafley to do after replacing Steve Addazio. The Eagles return less than half of their starting 22, and there is also no more WR Zay Flowers to stretch the defense. I think Hafley can coach, but Boston College needs to make move forward after a 2022 3-9 season. That means BC probably needs to make a bowl game or Hafley’s seat could really become hot.

Will Go 8-4 (4-4) if:

Boston College can take advantage of their soft non-conference schedule by going 4-0 against it. Last year BC went 1-3 OOC, and the only one they should have lost was a game at Notre Dame. They play Northern Illinois, Holy Cross, Army, and UCONN this year. If they go 4-0 against that schedule, the Eagles would be hard-pressed to miss a bowl game. There then becomes a real chance to have a nice season. QB Emmett Morehead showed flashes late last year, and with the return of All-ACC guard Christian Mahogany, the offense could be more consistent than last year. The defense features All-ACC talent Donovan Ezeiruaku. If he can help, the defense could be pretty decent. Outside of Florida State, the schedule is not overwhelming, BC has a chance to be a surprise this year.

Will Go 4-8 (1-7) if:

The offense is the mess it was last year. In 2022 Boston was FBS’s 121st offense and dead last in the ACC, and they were 0-2 to two of the teams, Rutgers and UCONN with worse statistical offenses. BC won’t survive the season with that kind of offense. The OOC schedule is weak, but the ACC even without Clemson could be a problem especially if the offense struggles. The defense wasn’t exactly shut down either last season giving up more than 30 points 7 times. There isn’t a ton of talent on the Eagles, and it will not take much for the season to be a forgettable one.
... (ASD; Fann)


Pittsburgh spent has spent the majority of the last 25 years treading water as a program. Under Pat Narduzzi the Panther really took a leap forward the last 2 years. You can certainly make the argument that Pitt has been one of the top 2 ACC programs in the last couple of years. There has been an ACC Title in 2021, wins over ranked teams in and out of conference, NFL drafts picks, and back-to-back top 25 finishes. Yet they seem to coming into this season under the radar. I think it’s time to stop underestimating the Pat Narduzzi and the Pittsburgh Panthers.

Will Go 10-2 (7-1) if:

Phil Jurkovec can be the quarterback I think he is. At BC, Jurkovec showed glimpses of being an All-ACC level quarterback. He’s being reunited with his former BC offensive coordinator Frank Cignetti Jr. and that should ease Jurkovec’s transition. The schedule is reasonable as they avoid Clemson and get Florida State at home. There is a game at Notre Dame, but Pittsburgh should be favored in the majority of their games. I think Pittsburgh’s opening schedule of Wofford, Cincinnati, at West Virginia, North Carolina, at Virginia Tech and Louisville gives them a shot at a 6-0 start. If they do that, I could see a double-digit win regular season.

Will Go 6-6 (4-4) if:

Pittsburgh can’t rebuild their defense after losing more than half their starters from a top-25 defense. If QB Phil Jurkovec struggles and the defense has setback, Pitt’s season suddenly looks a lot different. The schedule isn’t brutal, but it’s not a cakewalk either. Games with Florida State and Notre Dame will be very difficult. You could easily have a split between Cincinnati and West Virginia and games at Wake Forest and at Duke will be tricky. North Carolina and Louisville could be problematic even at home. Pitt could have a hard time with that group of games, and you never know if they get upset along the way. Pitt is too established to miss a bowl, but it could be a close call if a couple of things go sideways.
... (ASD; Fann)

I never expected ACC Commissioner Jim Phillips to release a full blown revenue plan Tuesday, but he left big clues on that subject. If you think the ACC’s Media Rights revenue doesn’t increase more than current projections at some point in the next few years then you simply are not paying attention. Whether this assures the ACC’s long-term viability we can’t say. We don’t even know the numbers, or exactly how it will grow but is more revenue going to be generated?

You can just about count on it. There is simply too much pointing in that direction.

The ACC is already looking at additional increases in 2027, and now Phillips’s comments point further in that direction at some point.

Here is a full transcript of Jim Phillips speaking at ACC Media Days from Louisville’s 247 site.

Let’s look at some of his most revenue-relevant quotes.

“We remain in constant communication with Disney and ESPN, as no single business partnership in our industry is valued more than with a conference’s media rights holder. In one of the most turbulent times in history for both media and college sports, I and the ACC have never felt better about our relationship than we do today. Our commitment to collaborate from a revenue and exposure standpoint has been unwavering.

“The work that’s been done over this past year, particularly in the last six months, as the Disney leadership and ESPN have been solidified, has been incredibly important to our partnership. We have agreed on a comprehensive, mutually beneficial growth and innovation strategy moving forward. And, second, put in motion several priority initiatives, the combination of which we believe will transform our conference for years to come.”

The ESPN partnership is really strong, and ESPN and the ACC are completely motivated together to generate additional dollars. Revenue generation continues to be a priority.

So you have a lot of mutually beneficial outcomes in this thing, so staying together, working collaboratively, working strategically, and we have some other things that we’re working on I can’t address with this group right now, that are pretty exciting to try to address that revenue gap.

Phillips has never been this forthcoming on the revenue topic, other than it had to be addressed and vague references to talking with ESPN.

It would have been nice had Phillip’s opened up a bit more on the details of what ESPN and the ACC are working on, but it wasn’t entirely necessary yet. He said just enough that is clear it’s his top priority, and something is happening in the background. It has the feel of the ACC Network when we kept getting hints dropped for a couple of years, that those that paid attention caught.

Recap: Boston College Football at the ACC Media Kickoff (; Flannery)

With just over a month to go before college football season starts, the Atlantic Coast Conference held its annual media kickoff day down in Charlotte, North Carolina. Boston College sent head coach Jeff Hafley, offensive lineman Christian Mahogany, and starting QB Emmett Morehead to represent the Eagles.

Right off the bat, Hafley was asked about BC’s offensive line. They were one of the worst in the country in 2022, but are expected to take a jump after bringing in two great transfers and returning Christian Mahogany from injury. Coach Hafley talked about what that means for their offense:

“At BC you have to run the ball and we’re going to run the ball. The key to our team, the strength of our team needs to be the O-line, and it will be the O-line. [...] That’s what excites me the most about this team is the offensive line. Now we have to go and prove it and we have to go line up in training camp, and now we’re going to be able to practice and be physical which we weren’t able to do.”

Now that Hafley is in his fourth season here on the Heights, he’s completely installed the culture he wants from his team. He talked about why his players have a great attitude in the culture he’s installed:

“I think last year we talked about Zay Flowers and how Zay could have left. Then you talk about Zay Flowers, who was the 22nd pick in the draft at the end of the season when we’re a 3-win team. That guy is playing harder for his teammates than a lot of people. [...] We won three games but we didn’t lose our good young players. Same thing with Christian. Christian could have went to the NFL, I’m sure Christian could have went to any team in the country, but he already said he wasn’t leaving. Our guys believe in what we’re doing. More importantly, our guys believe in eachother, and they believe in the coaching staff.”

Emmett Morehead is preparing for his first full season as Boston College’s starting quarterback after being thrust into that role midway through the 2022 season. The media asked him what he’s looking forward to this season after 2022’s struggles:

“When we have a good run game it opens up the playaction game. We’re efficient on first and second down. Our third down conversions are going to be much higher because we have much better position. I think we probably played on third and long more than any team in the country last year.”

They also asked Morehead about BC’s rich tradition of quarterback play and he didn’t hold back when talking about who he looks up to:

(youtube; podcast; Locked on the ACC)

ACC Football 2023 is around the corner and we asked some questions of some of your favorite ACC Teams: Duke, North Carolina, NC State, Wake Forest. Follow along as we bring you a series of questions for each program that leads to who will be the last team standing as #ACC #champions

Friedlander: Two stable Daves, Clawson and Doeren, are just the right fits for Wake Forest and NC State - Saturday Road (; Friedlander)

Virtually every college athletic director in the country keeps a list of potential coaching candidates in the top drawer of his or her desk, just in case.

It’s a good bet that Dave Clawson’s name appears at or near the top of most of those football lists. And Dave Doeren’s name is probably on the rest.

With plenty of overlaps.

There’s a good reason the Wake Forest and NC State coaches are among the first to be mentioned anytime a Power 5 job comes open.

They’re personable, driven individuals who run their programs the right way and have established a culture of winning at schools not considered to be traditional college football powerhouses.

Those also happen to be the reasons why they’re 2 of the longest-tenured coaches in the ACC, with Doeren getting ready to start his 11th season with the Wolfpack and Clawson coming up on Year 10 with the Deacons.

Despite all the opportunities each has almost certainly been presented over the years, they’ve resisted the urge and the financial benefits of moving elsewhere in search of new challenges, understanding that what works at Wake Forest and NC State might not necessarily work elsewhere.

That’s particularly true with Clawson.

Speculation surrounding his interest in the Northwestern job began swirling almost immediately after Pat Fitzgerald was fired in the fallout over a hazing scandal within his program.

It made sense. At face value, at least.

Clawson is well versed in the ins and outs of building a winner as the smallest fish in a big Power 5 pond. His current streak of 7 straight bowls is the longest in Wake Forest history.

Links, News and Rumors - 2023 July 28 (RX; HM)

Links, News and Rumors - 2023 July 28

From ESPN: Defending ACC champion Clemson sets national title goal

CHARLOTTE, N.C. -- Clemson is the defending ACC champion, but after two straight seasons outside the College Football Playoff, players said they won't be satisfied with less than a national title in 2023.
"We're not going to look down on an 11-3 ACC championship season," QB Cade Klubnik said at Thursday's ACC Kickoff event. "There's a lot of teams that wish they could have that type of year. But at the end of the day, that's our goal, is winning a national championship. Last year was a good year, but we've got bigger goals."

Brownlow's Twitter Mailbag: NIL fairness, ACC expansion based on mascots and more :: (; Brownlow)

July really flew by, huh? And what that means for all of us is that the college football season is rapidly approaching, which also means that this off-season Mailbag will come to an end soon.

In the meantime, though, you all continue to provide me with both funny and thought-provoking questions, sometimes even both in the same question!

This week, we'll get into Virginia football expectations, ACC expansion via mascots, NIL fairness (or lack of it) and my go-to vacation destinations.

Let's get to it!

What would constitute a successful season for Tony Elliott at this year?
— Dillonsrule (@dillonsrule) July 30, 2023

I mean, the bar is pretty low for Tony Elliott, fortunately (?) for him. The offense was bad last year and doesn't really return much, which ... I mean there's nowhere to go but up, I guess? But I've said that before about plenty of teams and found out that no, there is still room to go down that I just didn't know was there.

But do you remember how I've talked about the way a team can get genuinely better and still have a worse record if the schedule is tougher? Well, I don't see what some experts might refer to as "wins" on Virginia's schedule. At least ... not multiple.

The only sure bet is William and Mary, and it's not like that couldn't easily go awry. But Virginia OPENS this season with Tennessee (WELP) and then hosts a very good James Madison team before hosting a Maryland team that is better than they are. Virginia's schedule more often than not makes me want to pull out my hair. WHY?

Sapakoff: The ACC football case for Florida State, and for Clemson (P&C; Sapakoff)

Dabo Swinney, the primary spokesperson for ACC football since winning his way to what was once Bobby Bowden’s domain, took on the garnet and gold elephant in the room Thursday at the ACC Kickoff media event in Charlotte.

If Florida State gets consistently good at football again, he was asked, is that good for Clemson and for the ACC?

“I don’t know if it’s good for Clemson,” said the Clemson head coach who has led the Tigers to seven ACC Championships in the last eight seasons while the once-dominant Seminoles have mostly struggled.

“But it’s definitely good for the ACC — as many good teams as we can have. (Head coach) Mike (Norvell) has done an amazing job, he really has. You could kind of see it coming. Steady progress. They’ve done a great job in putting their roster together.”

It’s a fascinating contrast.

Florida State has built itself into a College Football Playoff contender with heavy transfer portal additions, including adding former South Carolina star tight end Jaheim Bell and Gamecocks’ 2022 tackles-for-loss leader Gilber Edmond.

Clemson Football: ACC realignment rumors (; Chancey)

Clemson Football is one of the Magnificent Seven programs (or eight, depending on who you are talking to) that was serious about taking action about the television revenue gap between the ACC and their peers in the SEC and Big Ten.

Now that Colorado has decided to leave the PAC-12 and rejoin the Big 12, many are speculating about the next moves (if there are any) imminent in conference realignment.

While there haven’t been any rumors that directly involve Clemson, there are some that involve the ACC.

Jim Williams, who is a podcast host and columnist, tweeted that the ACC was having conversations with the PAC-12.

I can confirm that @pac12 have spoken with officials from @theACC ahead of a very important CEO and ad meeting set for later today. More to come as i get additional information.
— Jim Williams (@JWMediaDC) July 27, 2023

Several people ran away with this believing they were talking about a merger. A March 2023 interview with former ESPN president John Skipper in which he suggested an ACC & PAC-12 merger began making the rounds. Williams addressed that with a follow-up.

Gang I did not report that the ACC and the Pac spoke about a MERGER. I said they held conversations. I am sure they didn't exchange ways to make better-fried chicken- but it was likely more what a partnership would look like. Even that is a heavy lift. But it never hurts to…
— Jim Williams (@JWMediaDC) July 27, 2023

Right now it is safe to assume the conferences are considering every possibility to find additional revenues, especially the PAC-12, who is still negotiating their next television contract. Alliances have existed before and didn’t always last, but it is not outside the realm of possibility that a “coastal challenge” could create some buzz in the television world.

No rumors on Clemson Football, but there are some on Florida State

Perhaps the most vocal ACC member regarding their current situation is Florida State. Chris Nee from 247Sports covering the Seminoles reports that Florida State is actively trying to leave the ACC.

Rumors are heavy and Chris Nee (FSU247) is reporting that Florida State is actively looking to leave the ACC.
SEC or B1G seem to be what they want.
— JWP Sports / CFBAlerts (@JWPSports) July 27, 2023

This may be a rumor, but it’s safe to say that FSU has been and will continue looking into options. The question is whether the Buffaloes’ move to the Big 12 has created more motivation to find a way to exit the ACC, or if this has been the case for some time. This might be more about the reactions of their fanbase than anything new within their administration.

It is important to remember these are just rumors. There might be substance, or they might be strategically released information for a conference or school to gauge the reaction from the fans. They also might be completely off base. Since sources are usually confidential and not disclosed, we do not know where the rumors come from.

College football countdown - 28 days: Tampering an issue for Wake Forest, others (ajc; Staff)

No, no and no.

Wake Forest coach Dave Clawson said that six to eight of his players who returned this season despite tampering efforts by other schools hoping to persuade them to transfer with promises of lucrative endorsement deals. He said the offers to his players ranged in value from roughly $150,000 to around $500,000.

Clawson didn’t identify the schools he said approached his players, saying only that none are in the ACC.

“One school did it with three different players,” Clawson said at the ACC Football Kickoff media event this week in Charlotte. “It was great: ‘No, no, no.’ And the money offers kept getting better.”

Coaches have talked broadly about tampering by schools trying to poach their rosters as the transfer portal allows for free player movement while players also can cash in with name, image and likeness (NIL) endorsement opportunities. Yet coaches rarely go into details beyond alleging it’s happening.

“I love the way (the players) handled it,” Clawson said. “They didn’t try to leverage, negotiate. They just wanted me to know as the head coach that these things are now going on in college football, which I knew.

Virginia's football operations center is coming along nicely (

Virginia’s new 90,000-square foot operations center for its football program is well underway, and coaches are using the new facility to help with recruiting.

The building (see related video taken Friday) is scheduled to open next spring, but that hasn’t kept UVA coaches from showing it off to prospects.

“We’ll give recruits tours and stuff like that,” said Cavalier assistant coach Chris Slade, who came to Virginia as a player when the last football operations center, the Dr. Frank McCue Center, was built in the early 1990s. “Before now they could only see pictures. Now they can see first-hand that it’s going to come to fruition and they’ll be the first class to live in it.”

The new center is scheduled to open next spring and has been a long time coming.

Former UVA coach Bronco Mendenhall said during his introduction speech as the Cavaliers’ new coach that a new football center was a must for the program and talked for several years about how Virginia lagged behind other ACC football programs in terms of facilities. Mendenhall was among the first to donate to get the ball rolling, contributing $500,000 to the cause.

While the football complex is set to open next spring (it is the building on the right, just beside the George Welsh Indoor Football Facility), the adjoining Olympic sports building (on the left in the video), won’t open until the summer of 2025. That project, which also includes some renovation of the McCue Center, will house lacrosse, track and field, soccer, rowing, field hockey and cross country.

“I’ve actually already felt the impact,” UVA football coach Tony Elliott said of the new facility. “This building is going to change the lives of our current student-athletes. The ability to have safe, efficient access to nutrition, sports medicine, strength and conditioning, position-specific development, will result in a well-prepared student-athlete for competition.

“The new facility also provides the space and the setting for our student-athletes to truly bond and grow as teammates and friends. We’re so excited about the new facility and the direct impact that it’s going to make on our program and give us the ability to reach our full potential.”

National website makes Mario Cristobal 2023 bold prediction (; Rubenstein)

Brad Crawford of 247 Sports named Mario Cristobal as one of his Bold possibilities that would rattle college football’s 2023 season.” Crawford’s bold possibility for the Miami football program is that “Mario Cristobal wins ACC Coach of the Year.” Crawford lays out his plan for Cristobal to win the 2023 ACC Coach of the Year.

Miami begins the season hosting Miami (Ohio) on September 1 followed by Texas A&M on September 9. The game versus Texas A&M could have a big impact if Cristobal is to have a chance to win ACC Coach of the Year. Miami finishes its non-conference schedule at Temple and versus Bethune-Cookman.

Fan Duel has the 2023 win total for the Miami football team set at plus 116 for over 7.5 wins and minus 142 for under 7.5 wins. A season that tops the over could net Mario Cristobal the ACC Coach of the Year. Miami would likely have to win nine games that include upsetting a higher-ranked opponent in a marque game.

Miami opens ACC play versus Georgia Tech on October 7. A week later Miami plays at North Carolina in what should be its first tough road test of the 2023 season. Losing games it was favored in last season led to Miami having a losing record. Crawford profiled the path for Cristobal to win ACC Coach of the Year.

ACC Collapse? New Details on FSU Leaving that TERRIFY Notre Dame (youtube; podcast; Double Fries)

FSU Football is going to be in a new conference in the near future and we’ve never been more sure. Here’s EVERYTHING you need to know on Conference Realignment!



Katrina Tulloch |

Syracuse’s newest music club opens next week in the heart of downtown. Take a look inside (PS; Cazentre)

Rock, punk, country, dance raves — even comedy shows: All will have a new outlet in downtown Syracuse.

A nightclub called The Song & Dance opens Friday, Aug. 4, with a launch party featuring the local emo/pop-punk band Career Mode. That will be followed on Saturday, Aug. 5, by a show headlined by touring metalcore bands Glasswaves and Elucidate.

The upcoming schedule is filling up quickly, with such shows as the post-hardcore band Thursday and ‘80s punk group Agnostic Front in early September. There’s also a lineup of DJ-led dance nights, with themes like “Gimme Gimme Disco,” “Emo Night in Brooklyn,” “K Pop Night” and “The Taylor (Swift) Party.” See the schedule.

The Song & Dance is in the basement level of a building at 115 E. Jefferson St., near the corner of South Salina Street. It’s close to the Landmark and Red House theaters, and in an area surrounded by bars, restaurants and other nightspots.

“We’re right here in the heart of downtown, in the middle of everything,” said Eric Binion, a long-time local music promoter who owns The Song & Dance with partner Dennis Ferry. “And we want to offer something for everyone — all genres, all sounds.”

Most shows will likely draw fans “from the 18-to-35″ age range, Binion said, but there will also be performers who skew a little older. The club will book some local acts, but the focus will be on touring artists.

The club hopes to add some comedy shows, focusing on performers who prefer “not to play actual comedy clubs,” Binion said.

Cool nights return soon to Upstate NY. So could Canadian wildfire smoke (PS; Coin)

A cold front sliding down from Canada today will bring a string of fall-like summer nights to Upstate New York, but it could also usher in another round of wildfire smoke.

On Friday, heat advisories were in place across much of Upstate New York, where the heat index rose into the mid 90s. Temperatures this morning are expected to fall no lower than the low 70s.

That heat will be short-lived, though. That cold front coming through today will cause a deep dip in the jet stream, the circulating ribbon of air in the upper atmosphere that acts as a curtain separating hot and cold.

“There’s going to be a pretty significant dip in the jet stream farther south, and that’s going to allow the cooler air to come in,” said Tom Kines, a meteorologist with Accuweather.

The high temperature today across Upstate will remain in the 70s, and by Sunday the cool mornings will kick in: The National Weather Service forecast for Sunday morning is a low of 60 degrees, more than 10 degrees lower than today’s low.


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