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Orangeyes Daily Articles for Monday for Football


No recent Cali or Iggy awards; Mr Irrelevant
Aug 15, 2011

Welcome to Earth Day!

The first Earth Day was held on April 22, 1970. Prior to this, there was virtually no environmental movement. Factories pumped toxins into the air, recycling was almost non-existent, and gas guzzling vehicles were the norm. The seeds of the modern movement had been planted, however, with the publishing of Rachel Carson's Silent Spring in 1962. This book raised the public's awareness of pollution and its effect on health. In 1969, water pollution and chemical waste disposal came to the attention of the public, after the Cuyahoga River in Cleveland caught fire.

Democratic Senator Gaylord Nelson of Wisconsin was deeply concerned about environmental issues. After witnessing the Santa Barbara oil spill in 1969, he began planning for the first Earth Day. This was during the time of Vietnam War protests and teach-ins, and Nelson thought he could bring the problems of pollution into the public consciousness by organizing similar types of teach-ins. He hoped that by shining a spotlight on environmental issues in this way, there may be a chance of bringing them into the realm of national priorities, where they had yet to be seen. He announced Earth Day at a conference in Seattle in September of 1969.

SU News

Syracuse football alumni flood the spring game, a fresh experience for many (; Ostrander)

Syracuse football held its spring football game Saturday evening.

With all the buzz surrounding the start of the Fran Brown era, this was Orange fans' first look at this highly anticipated team.

CNY Central was at an event with many of the former players who are now back in town for the game after supporting from afar.

Former players showed up and showed out to Syracuse's spring football game as Fran Brown invited many to come back and be around the program that they helped build.

Excitement around the Syracuse football program could be at one of its highest points ever as many fans like Justin Kozlowski love how Fran Brown has changed the program.

The energy around the program, great recruiting class, the Ohio State quarterback coming in. Fran Brown brings in a lot of energy and a lot of experience on his staff.

But for former players like Turnell Sims who was a right tackle from 1986-1991, this spring game is unique because many of them are back here for the first time since they played.

This right here has never happened in a spring game. Normally inside the Dome, they have a little place for us to sit and talk and hang out, but going forward, this is momentum. We are going to keep guys involved and excited and celebrate the success Coach Brown is going to have.
Alumni shared that they had a reception last night where about 75 alums were back, all for this spring game, many hoping this will be a permanent culture change to Syracuse football.

Alban Brown was a linebacker for the Orange from 1985-1990 he has friends who played at other schools who tell him all about the alumnus at other schools getting together for events but, he is upset that he hasn’t had that experience at Syracuse until now.

I had my high school friend who played for Miami. He's always talking about, 'We are doing this, we are doing that, what are you guys doing?' I am like, 'I haven't really been back there,' so now I finally feel a little bit more proud, like we just had an alumni event, it went great.
P.J. Alexander played for the Orange from 1997-2001 and he feels that this change with alumni coming back is all from Fran Brown.

It's definitely the Fran Brown effect. Coach Brown has done a great job of creating energy where there has been a lack of energy and excitement for a long time now.

Observations from SU's 2024 Spring Game: McCord's dome debut, running back depth (DO; O'Brien)

On Tuesday, Syracuse head coach Fran Brown promised fun at the 2024 spring game. He promised hard hits and explosive plays, not simple.

“We’re gonna set it up where you’re going to be able to see action,” Brown said at Ensley Athletic Center.

And for the most part Brown and his team delivered on that front. With SU football alums Zaire Franklin and John Lally serving as guest coaches, the white and blue teams gave fans at the JMA Wireless Dome deep passes, big runs and even a fumblerooski play to offensive lineman Mark Petry that went for four yards.

The white team, made up of the first-team offense and second-team defense, defeated the blue team, made up of the first-team defense and second team offense, 31-10. For all the excitement since Brown’s hiring, Syracuse’s newest big-time transfers and returns excelled. And during the game, Syracuse notched its third commit from the class of 2026: four-star running back D’Antae Sheffey.

But Brown still said the Orange have “a lot of work to do,” adding that, on a scale of 1-10 in terms of where he wanted his team to be, he would rate his team at a five.

Brown said he didn’t like seeing his players sign autographs in the middle of the contest and would rather have the players stay locked in and support their teammates. Brown is keenly aware of the attention his program is now getting and he said it’s up to him to maintain focus.

“There are two types of pressure to me: (when) things are going bad, people can handle that kind of pressure, But some people can’t handle the pressure, you can’t handle success,” Brown said. “So I got to make sure that I prepare them for that.

“I had a lot of people in the building throughout the week this week, a lot of cameras, a lot of different things and you just could see who acts different and who does what and who can stick to the course.”

Here are some observations from Syracuse’s 2024 Spring Game scrimmage:

Kyle McCord’s dome debut

McCord was the most important player the Orange picked up in the transfer portal, so it was fitting he was the only SU player wearing orange on the field. He was the only player to get an ovation from the crowd when he entered the game.

McCord completed his first pass attempt of the night on a middle of the field bullet to LeQuint Allen Jr. for a pickup of five yards. Later in the drive, McCord completed passes to Zeed Haynes and Trebor Pena, the two receivers he said on Tuesday he had the best chemistry with.

The Ohio State transfer also showed off his ability to stand tall in the pocket, even with the incoming pressure from pass rushers. On a 4th-and-3, McCord found Pena over the middle on a post route to pick up the first down. Later in the drive when faced with 4th-and-3 again, McCord remained unphased and completed a dart to Darrell Gill Jr. for a first down inside the 5-yard line.

McCord tried to force a connection to Haynes but failed on two straight attempts on a deep ball down the right side of the field. But on the third attempt in the second quarter, McCord found Haynes open with separation and completed a 38-yard pass for a touchdown. His night was over after the first half, but his presence gave the fans in the Dome much more to cheer about.

Top two rushers stand out

Following a season in which he occasionally was the sole focal point of the offense, Allen Jr. picked up right where he left off and rushed for 15 yards up the middle of the field on his first attempt. But almost immediately, Allen Jr. felt a pain in his right foot, came out and was inspected by two SU trainers. He limped in pain before eventually returning.

Kyle McCord shows promise in Syracuse's new-look offense (DO; Girshon)

When Kyle McCord entered the transfer portal after commanding Ohio State’s offense for one season, he seamlessly fit in with Syracuse.

Former SU starting quarterback Garrett Shrader no longer had college eligibility, and the Orange didn’t have a suitable backup or incoming recruit capable of starting. So, when McCord committed to SU on Dec. 17, he instantly became the starter.

In his JMA Wireless Dome debut during Syracuse’s spring game, McCord showcased stability from the quarterback position that the Orange lacked last season. Playing just in the first half, McCord completed 18-of-28 passes for 242 yards and a touchdown.

“Who said (McCord is) not one of the best quarterbacks in the ACC?” head coach Fran Brown said postgame.

Last season, SU’s quarterback room was far from the best in the Atlantic Coast Conference. Between mostly Shrader and backup Carlos Del Rio-Wilson, the Orange’s 2,223 passing yards ranked last in the ACC.

Beginning in November, after Shrader suffered an injury versus Virginia Tech on Oct. 26, SU’s offense didn’t have a legitimate passing threat. After Del Rio-Wilson, who also suffered an injury, started and threw four interceptions in SU’s 17-10 loss to Boston College on Nov. 3, Syracuse turned to a wildcat-heavy offense.

While the Orange produced wins over Pitt and Wake Forest, with tight end Dan Villari and running back LeQuint Allen Jr. taking the majority of snaps under center, the playstyle was unsustainable. In addition to a 31-22 loss to Georgia Tech on Nov. 18, Syracuse was blown out 45-0 in the Boca Raton Bowl by South Florida.

Shrader had shoulder surgery and was ruled out against the Bulls while Del Rio-Wilson was also inactive. Thus, Syracuse relied on Villari and Allen Jr. from the wildcat. In SU’s blowout loss, it generated just 139 passing yards.


Yasin Willis running back (23) . The Syracuse Orange football team play their annual Spring Scrimmage game at the JMA Dome April 20, 2024. (Dennis Nett |

SU football spring game box score | Willis leaves early impression: ‘We’ll have thunder and lightning’ (PS; Mink)

Here are the numbers from the Syracuse football spring game on Saturday night in the JMA Wireless Dome.

The White Team defeated the Blue Team, 31-10, with the first-team offense starting for the White and first-team defense suiting up for the Blue.

Ohio State-transfer quarterback Kyle McCord finished 18-for-28 for 242 yards, including a 38-yard touchdown to Georgia-transfer wide receiver Zeed Haynes in their first action in front of fans.

SU_spring_game_box by Nate Mink on Scribd

While McCord was the main attraction, the end-of-spring scrimmage is often a showcase for young talent waiting in the wings, itching to crack the two-deep by the fall.


Scott Schild | sschild@syracuse.

Brown on his No. 2 QB: Del Rio-Wilson won spring battle; Davis in limbo (PS; $; Leiker)

Entering Saturday’s Syracuse football spring game, all eyes were on new quarterback Kyle McCord.

But they were also on the two players behind him to see who might come away as a favorite to back up the Ohio State transfer on the depth chart.

For Fran Brown, Carlos Del Rio-Wilson came away with the edge.

“I think he competed a little harder,” Brown said postgame. “Not even competed harder. They both competed. But I feel like he was a little more consistent. He hit stuff better. That’s why we had him in.”

That said, Del Rio-Wilson’s spot backing up McCord is far from inked in permanent marker.

In the four-month span between Saturday and its season-opener, Syracuse will welcome in at least two more quarterbacks — freshmen Jakhari Williams and AJ Miller, a preferred walk-on — with the potential for more to join, too, as Brown left the door open for a portal addition.

The need for a solid No. 2 option only increases with Davis potentially being transitioned to another role.

Davis was seen repping at wide receiver during Thursday’s practice.

He’s not the first transfer quarterback to come to Syracuse and be moved positionally before any significant playing time in the role. Dan Villari, of course, has thrived after his transition to tight end.

After leading one drive early in the game, Davis then spent more of his first-half reps lined up outside. He was targeted at least once by Del Rio-Wilson, but the pass went incomplete with Davis covered and at the sideline.

He resumed playing more quarterback once McCord had been benched and Del Rio-Wilson was switched to the winning White team in the second half.

Brown wants SU football’s walk to dome to be a big deal. The first try flopped: ‘It was weak’ (PS; Carlson)

Syracuse football coach Fran Brown has a vision for what his program will look like.

That vision is detailed all the way down to how his team will walk to the JMA Wireless Dome before each game.

Brown is bringing back the team’s Quad walk this season. The team made its way though the area almost two hours before the start of the spring game on Saturday.

While Brown expressed appreciation for the fans who attended, he said the first attempt at an entrance didn’t live up to his standards.

“We’ve got to get the band out there,” Brown said. “It wasn’t the way I wanted it. I talked to them about it. It was weak. They didn’t do it right. I’m happy for the fans and the people that were there, but the band was supposed to be there. The cheerleaders were supposed to come. Everybody was supposed to be there, completely deep. We told them what time we were coming. It wasn’t set up right.”

Brown said that in addition to the lack of pomp from university supporters, the route he wanted to take was adjusted likely because of the smaller crowd.

“We’re going to get it better,” Brown said. “It’ll be a lot different next time. It’ll continue to get better. You know what makes the walk better? Winning. When we win, people come. So we’ve just got to win, I guess. They’re like, ‘You don’t win enough for the band.’ Maybe we’ve got to win for the band to come out.”

In his first few months on the job, listening to Brown has made a couple of things clear.

He expects his team to work hard. And when it does, he expects his players to be appreciated and rewarded for that hard work.

McCord flexes early chemistry with WRs in Syracuse spring game (takeaways) (PS; $; Leiker)

Syracuse football fans erupted into cheers when the public address announcer came over the speaker to announce the first-string starting quarterback.

The first five words of the phrase — “In at quarterback, No. 6,” — are familiar, but the new name that follows them is on-field representation of what this new era of Orange football is supposed to be.

Quarterback Kyle McCord captained the White team in Syracuse’s spring game to victory over the Blue team, 31-10, on Saturday evening in front of the largest standalone spring game crowd in Orange history.

There were not official live stats during the game.

The high-profile transfer brought in by new head coach Fran Brown to steer his offense showed exactly why he was a top target for this new era.

McCord wore an orange jersey to indicate no-contact, a designation reserved exclusively for him, but still showed his improvement at navigating pressure in the pocket, something he said this week had been a point of emphasis for him during spring practice.

He hit more deep passes than Syracuse did in the final month of last season (at least, that’s what it felt like). Trebor Pena, who’s back from injury after a year on the sideline, Darrell Gill Jr. and Yazeed Haynes were consistent targets.

A few attempts fell incomplete very early on, but mostly McCord found his mark. The passes looked just as pretty in-game as they have in practice.

The Juice Online - 4 takeaways from Syracuse Football's 2024 Spring Game (; Stechschulte)

Coach Fran Brown’s Syracuse football team made its public debut Saturday night as the White Team, led by returning running back LeQuint Allen and transfer quarterback Kyle McCord, claimed a 31-10 victory over the Blue Team.

While it was not a conventional game, the Orange showed enough as a whole to give the fans some things to turn over in their minds before late summer and the football season roll around.
Here are some things for the fanbase to think about…

Thunder and lightning in the backfield

LeQuint Allen is SU’s best player and there is probably very little debate about it. Allen ran for over 1,000 yards and scored ten touchdowns last season, then showed in the spring game that fans should expect more of the same this season.

The junior opened the evening’s scoring by bulling five yards for a touchdown, then added the last touchdown of the game, blowing untouched through his teammates (they were trying to touch him, I assure you) for a 40-yard burst. That combination of power and speed allowed Allen to turn a handful of touches into around 75 yards from scrimmage.

Allen will be spelled by freshman Yasin Willis. Brown called the duo “Thunder and Lightning” in his postgame remarks and Willis showed that he was the former, powering through defenders on many of his carries.

Willis got a handoff on the White Team’s third play and, by my record keeping, had over 100 yards on the ground, including six carries for ten or more yards. He did, however, have a significant blemish, as he was stripped on his final carry of the night.

Kyle McCord hits Zeed Haynes for a 38-yard touchdown on a 9 route. There have been a lot of deep routes called to stretch the defense so far and McCord has not been afraid to throw them.
— The Juice on Rivals (@TheJuiceOnline) April 20, 2024

The receiver room is deep

When Oronde Gadsden II returns to full health, Syracuse could have a pretty impressive passing attack… and they might be capable of doing it without him. While the offense did not show much diversity in playcalling, formations, routes, or usage of pre-snap motion, the ball was focused on three different receivers.

(Brown keeping things close to the vest in postgame suggests this might be rooted more in not showing the team’s offensive hand than anything else.)

Georgia transfer wide receiver Zeed Haynes was targeted eight times in the first half by McCord and illustrated why he was named the offensive MVP of spring. Haynes had a touchdown among his half dozen catches, showing the ability to make plays on the deep ball and a nifty toe-tap on the sideline for a first down.

Orange Set New Spring Game Attendance Record - Syracuse University Athletics (

The first spring ball of the Fran Brown era of Syracuse football culminated in a record attendance for a spring football game, with 16,579 tickets out for the AmeriCU Spring Game. Those fans were treated to over two hours of intra-squad scrimmage action.

Guest coach John Lally's squad bested Zaire Franklin's team 31-10, backed by prized quarterback Kyle McCord completing 18-of-28 passes for 242 yards and a touchdown in his Dome debut, despite only playing the first half.

Lally's squad was led by seven catches from Trebor Pena for 130 yards, hauling in every target. Yazeed Haynes caught six passes for 74 yards and a score. LeQuint Allen scored two touchdowns on the ground, rushing for 73 yards on just six carries. Freshman Yasin Willis carried the ball 11 times for 91 yards and scored the other rushing TD.

Carlos Del Rio-Wilson threw for 101 yards for the Blue squad, with Umari Hatcher and Jaden Hart each catching two passes. Zaire Franklin's squad was fittingly led defensively by its linebacking corps, as Derek McDonald and Marlowe Wax each made eight tackles. KingJoseph Edwards also notched a strip-sack in the game.
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Orange fans will now have to wait for the real thing, the next time 'Cuse is in the JMA Dome is on Aug. 31 when Ohio comes to town. Season tickets are on sale at

Fran Brown and Kyle McCord bring excitement to Spring Game (; Finley)

An anxious crowd patiently waited as more and more fans began to fill the JMA Wireless Dome to get a look at one of the most anticipated Syracuse football Spring Games in recent memory.
Orange fans got the opportunity to see the new Syracuse football squad in action on Saturday at the AmeriCU Spring Game. Over 16,000 fans showed up to set a new record attendance for the game.

Out of the tunnel, new head coach Fran Brown walked the team out for stretches and warmups, trying his best to place the team in a game-like mindset.

Fans got the chance to see new head coach Fran Brown’s system and recruits at the annual spring game.

The Blue team, or the second-string offense, went three-and-out on the opening drive of the game, before new Syracuse quarterback Kyle McCord went on the field.
McCord, a senior, knows a thing or two about playing in loud environments. He transferred from Ohio Stadium, and played in pivotal away games against Notre Dame and Michigan. So, when McCord entered the game, the roar from the crowd was nothing new.

The quarterback continued to look at ease during his first drive. McCord was past midfield, nearing field goal range. After a few missed connections, Syracuse was on fourth down with three yards to go. McCord stepped into the pocket and launched the ball down the right sideline. Junior wide receiver Darrell Gill Jr. went up over two defenders for a contested catch that set up a LeQuint Allen touchdown.

How did former Ohio State football QB Kyle McCord do in the Syracuse football spring game? (; Gay)

Kyle McCord made his unofficial Syracuse debut Saturday night.

The former Ohio State quarterback played in the first half of Syracuse's spring game. He completed 18-of-28 pass attempts for 242 passing yards and a touchdown.

McCord's touchdown came on a 38-yard pass to Georgia transfer wide receiver Zeed Haynes. Haynes would end up with six catches for 74 yards. Trebor Pena had seven receptions for 130 yards.

All were playing in front of a Syracuse spring game-record crowd of around 16,579, according to the school.

McCord entered the transfer portal after leading Ohio State to an 11-1 record during the 2023 regular season. The Buckeyes' loss came to Michigan, their third-straight defeat at the hands of the Wolverines. McCord threw for 3,170 yards, 24 touchdowns and 6 interceptions while completing 65.8% of his 348 pass attempts last year.

According to McCord, his decision to transfer from Ohio State to Syracuse was strictly business.

"At the end of the day, the top level of college football and then especially onto the pros, it's a business," McCord said on "The QB Room" podcast. "At the end of the day, Ohio State had to make a business decision they felt like was best for them. And I had to do the same thing."

McCord and Syracuse will open the 2024 season Aug. 31 against Ohio.

Terrell Wilfong talks about his Syracuse football commitment (; Dyer)

Syracuse football has been hot on the recruiting trail, landing a three-star player this week in Terrell Wilfong.

Wilfong is a three-star wide receiver from West Orange High School (West Orange, New Jersey). He is the No. 15 player in the state according to Rivals.
His offer list included Boston College, Cincinnati, UConn, Maryland, Temple and West Virginia among others.

He is the second commit to Syracuse from New Jersey, an area that the program has traditionally used to supplement its roster. He is the fourteenth commit in this class for Syracuse.
“I chose ‘Cuse because it feels like a home away from home to me,” Wilfong told USA TODAY High School Sports.

“The coaching staff treats me like family and I love everything that they’re doing over there and I want to be a part of it.”

Syracuse’s new head coach, Fran Brown, is doing a tremendous job in recruiting and landing top talent. He has a top staff for recruiting as well.

One of the stars of the staff is Ross Douglas, the wide receivers coach. Douglas was most recently the wide receivers coach at the New England Patriots before joining the Orange this offseason.

“Since the day they offered me it’s been nothing but love. Every week they would call and text, checking in on me and my family,” Wilfong said.

“And coach Ross is a great receivers coach and I feel as if he can help me become the best player I can possibly be.”

Syracuse Football picks up third commitment for Class of 2026 (PS; $; Axe)

The Syracuse University football team picked up its third commitment for the Class of 2026 on Saturday night.

D’Antae Sheffey, a running back from Harrisburg (PA) High School, announced his commitment to Syracuse on Saturday night on social media during Syracuse football’s spring game.

Sheffey is listed at 6-feet and 190 pounds. He chose Syracuse over Wisconsin, Pittsburgh, Virginia Tech and Cincinnati among others. Sheffey also visited Penn State several times.

@dantaesheffey on his decision ⬇️
— Steezo (@SteezoDsgn) April 21, 2024

Rivals rates him as a four-star prospect with On3 noting him as a 3-star. The 247 composite has not rated him yet.

Sheffey joins linebacker Izayia Willaims and athlete Demetres Samuel Jr. in SU’s football recruiting class for 2026.

Verbal commitments are not binding until a player signs a National Letter of Intent.

Haleem Muhammad commits to Syracuse football (; McAllister)

Class of 2025 Pennington (NJ) School defensive lineman Haleem Muhammad has committed to Syracuse, he announced on social media. The 6-3, 250 pounder chose the Orange over offers from Boston College, Cincinnati, Florida, Maryland, Penn State, Rutgers, Texas A&M, Virginia Tech, West Virginia and others. Muhammad was one of dozens of recruits in the 2025, 2026, and 2027 classes on campus over the weekend for the annual spring game.

Muhammad had been prioritized by several power conference schools, including in-state Rutgers, In fact, after visiting earlier this spring, Muhammad scheduled an official visit to Rutgers for this summer (June 7-9). However, his visit to Central New York was enough for him to make a decision and commit to the Orange.

The talented defensive lineman is the 15th player overall to commit to the Orange. He joins edge Sharlandiin Strange out of Cheltenham High in Pennsylvania, wide receiver, Darien Williams out of Christian Brothers Academy in New York, defensive back Javon Lawrence out of North Rockland High in New York, offensive lineman Byron Washington out of DeSoto High in Texas, defensive back Marcus Upton out of Winslow Township High in New Jersey, defensive back Jordan Gibbs out of Longwood High in New York, two-way lineman Jaylan Pray out of Brunswick School in Connecticut, quarterback Luke Carney out of Dallas Christian School in Texas, running back Bo MacCormack out of Buckingham Browne & Nichols School in Massachusetts, offensive lineman Matthew Hawn out of Christian Brothers Academy in New York, wide receiver Julian McFadden out of LeSalle College High in Pennsylvania, running back Malachi Coleman out of Fleming High in Virginia, offensive lineman Kardiear Shepherd out of Cicero North Syracuse High in New York and wide receiver Terrell Wilfong out of West Orange High in New Jersey.

Syracuse football's 2025 recruiting class is currently ranked 10th in the nation and second in the ACC with those 14 commitments. Of those 15, 12 are from the Northeast. They include five from Syracuse's home state of New York, three from New Jersey, two from Pennsylvania, one from Connecticut and one from Massachusetts. The three players not from the Northeast include two from Texas and one from Virginia. The Orange has offers out all across the country, however, as Fran Brown has taken a national approach to looking for talent while also focusing closely on keeping talent home. (TNIAAM; Wall)

As the Syracuse Orange conclude their spring practice, the staff continues to build their 2025 and 2026 classes by adding a player in each.

Defensive end Haleem Muhammed from Pennington, NJ committed to join the 2025 class. Muhammed is considered a top 500 recruit by On3 and had offers from Penn State, Rutgers, Maryland and Texas A&M. The 6’ 3.5” 255 pound defensive end is the 15th member of the class.

Then during the spring game last night, Fran Brown added his third verbal commitment for the 2026 class. State College, PA running back D’Antae Sheffey announced he would be joining the Orange over offers from Pitt, Cincinnati, Wisconsin, Rutgers and Virginia Tech. Sheffey is considered a four-star by Rivals and a top-20 running back in his class by Rivals and On3.

... (PS; $; Leiker)

Syracuse football is maximizing its roster allowance with the addition of another preferred walk-on.

Class of 2024 quarterback Patrick Grusser announced his commitment to the Orange on Sunday night via social media.

Grusser played three seasons of high school ball: two at DePaul Catholic and one, his senior season, at St. Joseph Regional in Montvale, New Jersey, which is also the alma mater of SU early enrollee and spring standout running back Yasin Willis.

Willis commented, “Well let’s run it back (then) twin,” with an orange emoji and a fire emoji on Grusser’s Instagram post announcing his commitment.

Grusser is not rated in the 247Sports Composite nor individually by any of the major recruiting services.

As the starter at St. Joseph’s last season, Grusser (6-foot-2, 194 pounds) threw for 2,085 yards, 11 touchdowns and five interceptions with a 68.7% completion percentage, according to stats on He finished his high school career over the 3,000-yard mark despite a junior season cut short by injury.

Grusser is part of an athletic family. He has an older brother who spent his true freshman season last fall at Michigan on the scout team and is now in the transfer portal. He has a younger brother who plays football for another New Jersey program, and a younger sister who plays soccer at that same school.

The Orange is now set to welcome three new quarterbacks this summer, doubling the size of its room from this spring. Grusser will join alongside 3-star Jakhari Williams and in-state preferred walk-on AJ Miller. (youtube; podcast; Locked on Syracuse; scheduled for 9 AM EST)

Kyle McCord Shines in Syracuse Football's Spring Game + Early '24 Syracuse Record Prediction (; podcast; Locked on Syracuse)

Syracuse Football recently played its Spring Game. Fran Brown's squad had plenty of stand-outs. Ohio State transfer Kyle McCord looked as good as advertised, and the connection between him and Georgia transfer Yazeed Haynes could be lethal. Trebor Pena, Yasin Willis, Fadil Diggs, and Kingjoseph Edwards also flashed during the game. Finally what should expectations be for the Orange next season? (PS; $; Carlson)

Syracuse football wide receiver Donovan Brown is not with the team, coach Fran Brown said on Friday following the team’s spring game.

Donovan Brown was a member the team’s spring roster but was not at the team’s practice on Thursday. He was not listed on the team’s roster for the spring game. Many players who weren’t listed on the active roster for the spring game were on the sidelines wearing their game jerseys. Brown was not.

“He’s just not with the team right now,” Fran Brown said. “He’s not with the team. He has some things he has to take care of between himself and the university and things of that nature, so he’s not on the team right now. Good kid. He was trying to get himself right, but unfortunately he’s just not with the team at the moment.”

It wasn’t immediately clear whether Fran Brown was saying that Donovan Brown wasn’t practicing with the team or that he was not considered a member of the Orange program.
... (youtube; podcast; Axe & Leiker)

Brent Axe and Emily Leiker recap the Syracuse University football spring game from the JMA Wireless Dome.

Highlights from Syracuse's Spring Football Game

ACC News (; Rorabaugh)

It's back to court Monday for the case of Florida State vs. the ACC.

Will this give FSU what it needs to leave for the Big Ten or SEC?

The two contentious parties have been at each other for a while now. The Seminoles, upset with the conference and its money issues for years, sued the ACC in December over its media rights deal and the exorbitant penalty they said it would cost to jump ship. The league countersued in North Carolina, where a judge ruled last week that the case could proceed. Now Clemson and ESPN have gotten involved, too.

The FSU-ACC fight returns to Leon County court after their first hearing April 8. Here's what you need to know about the ongoing legal case and what it means for college football.

Why is FSU leaving the ACC?

For years, Florida State leaders have been vocal in their displeasure over the conference's revenue sharing plan. Most complaints circle around the ACC's TV contract with ESPN, which extends through 2036 even as the network makes substantial cuts. The Big Ten signed a seven-year, $8 billion deal to air games between Fox, CBS and NBC that went into effect last season. For the 2024 season, the SEC starts a 10-year, $3 billion deal to move from CBS to ESPN.

Those deals include huge payouts for the schools. Florida coach Billy Napier said projections show each SEC school would get millions more from the new deal, rising from $55 million to potentially more than $70 million. FSU athletic director Michael Alford said Big Ten schools will receive about $80 million each year from its TV contract, whereas FSU currently receives $42 million.

What happened in FSU-ACC lawsuit last time? What's happening today?

Judge John Cooper denied the ACC's motion to stay FSU's lawsuit in Florida. He called the ACC's pre-emptive countersuit in North Carolina a form of "forum shopping," adding the case should be a concern at the state level for every state with a school in the conference.

Cooper is expected to hand down his decision Monday.

Are Florida State and Clemson leaving the ACC? Are they joining the Big Ten?

The final straw for Florida State might have been the FSU football team going undefeated and winning the ACC championship but still being left out of the College Football Playoff. Outrage from all over Florida (and beyond) started immediately after the CFP announcement December 3, and on December 22, the FSU Board of Trustees voted to sue the conference over its media right deal.

Clemson entered the mix in March with its own lawsuit against the ACC. Both schools show intent on exiting the ACC, with FSU stating it outright in a filing March 27. While the two could leap to either the Big Ten or the ACC, it's the Big Ten that seems to constantly circulate in the rumor mill for the Seminoles. Nothing is official yet, however.

Is FSU suing ACC over exit fee?

FSU's biggest contention with the conference is over its grant of rights, the media deal that all schools within a conference have to sign. The restrictive deal lasts until 2036, and the proceeds Florida State gets from it pales in comparison to its rivals in the Big Ten and SEC after their latest blockbuster TV deals.
... (; AP)

College football is ready to put the signs away.

Following a sign-stealing scandal that rocked the sport and hung over Michigan’s championship run in 2023, the NCAA’s football oversight committee approved Friday the use of coach-to-player helmet communications in games for the 2024 season.

The football rules committee last month made a recommendation to allow — but not require — teams at the highest tier of Division I to use radio technology similar to what NFL teams use.

Only one player for each team will be permitted to be in communication with coaches while on the field. A green dot on the back of the helmet will be used to identify that player.

The communication from the coach to the player will be turned off with 15 seconds remaining on the play clock or when the ball is snapped, whichever comes first.

The rules committee had been moving toward coach-to-player communication in recent years, but it was slow to be implement because of concerns that not every school could afford to do it in an equitable way.

During last year’s bowl season, teams were permitted to experiment with helmet communication if both sides agreed to it. But no team was forced to use it and that will be the case going forward.

Teams can still chose to signal in plays.

Sign stealing during games is not illegal under NCAA rules, unless it is done with the use of electronic technology.

The NCAA investigated Michigan for using an elaborate impermissible in-person scouting scheme to aid its sign-stealing operation. That case is ongoing, but the Big Ten punished the school by suspending then-head coach Jim Harbaugh for the final three games of the regular season.

Michigan finished 15-0 and won the national championship.

The NCAA’s football oversight committee also approved the the use of computer tablets to view in-game video in coaching booths, on the sideline and in locker rooms.

All team personnel will be allowed to view the tablets during the game.

The oversight committee said the rules committee will continue to examine the use of wearable technology that would also allow coaches to send in play calls to the field through an small LED screen that could be wrapped on around a player’s wrist.
... (

In the Blue Devils’ first public performance under new head coach Manny Diaz, the defense (White Team) held off the offense (Blue Team) for a 21-16 victory in the Blue & White Game on Saturday evening at Brooks Field at Wallace Wade Stadium.

The contest featured two 15-minute quarters with traditional scoring for the offense and specialty scoring for the defense, including six points for a turnover, three points for a fourth-down stop, two points for a three-and-out and one point for a sack.

On the opening drive with redshirt sophomore quarterback Maalik Murphy calling the signals, the defense secured a three-and-out for an early 2-0 advantage. The offense moved the ball to the 9-yard line on the ensuing drive but was stopped on a fourth-down pass into the end zone, as the defense increased its margin to five points.

As sophomore Grayson Loftis rotated in at quarterback, linebacker Tre Freeman broke up a pass on fourth down to push White’s lead to 8-0.

On Blue’s fifth possession, Murphy engineered a 14-play drive with four first downs to set up junior Todd Pelino for a 25-yard field goal, narrowing the deficit to 8-3 with 1:55 remaining in the opening half.

Blue implemented its two-minute offense to move the ball from the 25-yard line to the opponent’s 35-yard line, but a pass to the end zone on the final play fell incomplete to give the defense a 11-3 cushion at halftime.

Out of the break, the White Team added another fourth-down stop to extend its edge to 14-3, but Pelino chipped in again for the Blue Squad with another field goal, this time from 28-yards away, to cut into the deficit at 14-6.

On the next drive, although forced into a third-and-long situation following a pass break-up by junior cornerback Chandler Rivers and a tackle-for-loss by graduate student defensive end Michael Reese, Murphy completed a five-yard pass on fourth down to keep the drive alive. After moving the chains, senior receiver Jordan Moore made a leaping grab over a defender at the goal line for the game’s only touchdown. The connection from Murphy trimmed the Blue Team’s deficit to one point, 14-13, with 8:19 left on the clock.
... (RX; HM)

If you believe the ESPN/Fox Conspiracy...

There are plenty of folks on the internet who will tell you that ESPN and Fox plan to split the top college teams into two camps: SEC (ESPN) and Big Ten (Fox).Now, are there problems with this world view? Sure. Does that mean that it's 100% false? Not necessarily. Are we going to explore this idea right now? You bet!

First up is "College Football Addiction" (aka the "Double Fries, No Slaw" guy). He thinks the TV networks will divide up the top ACC brand this way:
Big Ten/Fox

  • Florida St
  • Clemson
  • NC State
  • UNC
  • Duke
  • Miami
His reasoning? In order to force the issue of consolidation of brands, he thinks ESPN will NOT extend the ACC's TV contract beyond next season. Since the GoR states that it grants media rights to the ACC fot the purpose of fulfilling the ESPN contract, the theory goes, the GoR would vanish if there is no contract with ESPN, thus freeing every school - including FSU and Clemson.
He also thinks FSU and Clemson are more valuable to Fox than they are to ESPN, but in order to offset the loss of those teams, Fox has [allegedly] agreed to release UNC (new state, strong overall brand), Duke (small school but top basketball value), and Miami (new TV DMA, strong football brand) to ESPN/SEC. He reasons that the Big Ten will take NC State as a consolation prize to get into North Carolina. He also reasons that UVA and Virginia Tech will remain in the ACC - for now - as will Louisville.
... (RX; HM)

2024 NFL Mock Draft

The NFL Draft begins April 25th and runs through the 27th. Here are the first round picks from four recent mock drafts recommended by All Sports Discussion, with ACC alumni highlighted:

pickSchrager, NFLJahnke, PFFBrinson, CBSIyer, SportingNews
1Williams, USC, QBWilliams, USC, QBWilliams, USC, QBWilliams, USC, QB
2Daniels, LSU, QBDaniels, LSU, QBMaye, UNC, QBMaye, UNC, QB
3Maye, UNC, QBMaye, UNC, QBMcCarthy, Michigan, QBDaniels, LSU, QB
4McCarthy, Michigan, QBHarrison, Ohio St, WRHarrison, Ohio St, WRHarrison, Ohio St, WR
5Harrison, Ohio St, WRMcCarthy, Michigan, QBDaniels, LSU, QBBowers, Georgia, TE
6Odunze, Washington, WRNabers, LSU, WRNabers, LSU, WRNabers, LSU, WR
7Alt, Notre Dame, OTAlt, Notre Dame, OTAlt, Notre Dame, OTAlt, Notre Dame, OT
8Turner, Alabama, EdgeTurner, Alabama, EdgeTurner, Alabama, EdgeTurner, Alabama, Edge
9Nabers, LSU, WRNix, Oregon, QBOdunze, Washington, WRLatu, UCLA, Edge
10Bowers, Georgia, TEOdunze, Washington, WRLatham, Alabama, OTOdunze, Washington, WR
... (RX; HM)

2024 NCAA Rule Changes

From Yahoo!

NCAA approves helmet communication, sideline tablets, two-minute warning for FBS

College football is embracing technology adopted long ago by the NFL and even the high school game. Helmet communication and use of sideline tablets in the FBS will be allowed beginning with the upcoming season...
Maybe that will finally be the end of those stupid signs on the sidelines?
One more change approved for next season will be adding a two-minute warning toward the end of the second and fourth quarters during games, incorporating an element that previously distinguished college football gameplay from the NFL.
... (RX; HM)

18 More Weeks...

...until you can kick back in front of your TV and watch Florida State vs Georgia Tech - from Ireland! - on Saturday, August 24th, 2024.

In the meantime, perhaps this video will help you pass the time...

Remember this game from 2014: #2 FSU vs #11 GT for the ACC Championship? (RX; HM)

Last-Minute Links, News, and Rumors 2024 April 19th

From ExtraPointsMB: What’s the real reason behind Virginia’s new landmark NIL bill?

On Thursday morning, Virginia Gov. Glenn Youngkin signed a new NIL bill into law... [which] allows schools to directly pay athletes for their NIL rights. Starting July 1, any school in the state can enter into an NIL deal with an athlete (like say, for a billboard marketing campaign, or a series of PSAs), instead of the deal needing to be structured via a third party...

I believe Virginia and Virginia Tech are very much willing to find ways to directly compensate athletes for NIL campaigns... but they’re really hoping that this new law... would force the NCAA to make a national policy change.
... (youtube; podcast; Ruffino & Joe)

Joe DeLeone and Blake Ruffino share their Florida State Spring Game Reaction, and discuss if they can win with DJ Uiagalelei (youtube; podcast; WahooBrad)

2024 ACC Football Coaches Ranking | Who's On the Hot Seat?



The new "Best of Bruce Springsteen" album, released April 19, 2024, features a photo by Syracuse native Eric Meola on the cover, taken from his 1975 session with Bruce Springsteen and E Street Band saxophonist Clarence Clemons for the iconic "Born to Run" album cover. (Columbia Records)Columbia Records (PS; $; Herbert)

A photographer from Syracuse contributed the cover image for a Rock and Roll Hall of Famer’s new greatest hits collection.

“Best of Bruce Springsteen,” released on Friday, features 31 songs on its expanded digital release (now streaming on Spotify and Apple Music) and 18 tracks on physical media (CDs and vinyl). The compilation is an expanded retrospective that captures Bruce Springsteen’s career from his 1973 debut (”Greetings From Asbury Park, N.J.”) to his 2020 album, “Letter to You.”

The cover will look very familiar to fans of The Boss, as it’s taken from the “Born to Run” photo session captured by photographer Eric Meola, an Eastwood native who graduated from Syracuse University in 1968. The image used for the 1975 album cover featured Springsteen, wearing a leather jacket and holding a guitar while smiling and leaning on E Street Band saxophonist Clarence Clemons.

“I always thought it was one of those records that you didn’t have to hear,” Springsteen once said. “When you saw the cover, you said, ‘I want that one.’”

“With ‘Born to Run’ I nailed it,” Meola said.

Springsteen instead appears solo on the new greatest hits album cover, running one hand through his hair and looking off to the side. A guitar is dangling in front of him on a strap, and his black leather jacket is open so you can see a small tear in his white T-shirt.

It’s one of some 900 photos taken by Meola during that June 20, 1975, shoot in his New York City studio. Meola told The Post-Standard in 2005 that he was paid about $1,500 for the session without being guaranteed any of the photos would be used, but he knew “Born to Run” would be a huge piece of rock and roll history.

“I literally remember Clarence saying to me one day: ‘We’ll be interviewed about this 30 years from now,’” Meola said in 2005.
... (PS; Herbert)

Upstate New York music legend Lou Gramm, the original lead singer of Foreigner, will finally be inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame this year.

Foreigner was announced as one of the 2024 Rock Hall inductees during “American Idol” Sunday night, along with Mary J. Blige, Jimmy Buffett, Cher, Dave Matthews Band, Peter Frampton, Kool & The Gang, Alexis Korner, John Mayall, MC5, Ozzy Osbourne, Suzanne De Passe, Big Mama Thornton, A Tribe Called Quest, Dionne Warwick and Norman Whitfield.

“Rock ‘n’ roll is an ever-evolving amalgam of sounds that impacts culture and moves generations,” John Sykes, chairman of the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame Foundation, said in a statement. “This diverse group of inductees each broke down musical barriers and influenced countless artists that followed in their footsteps.”

It was the first time Foreigner had been nominated for induction, despite being eligible since 2002. One of the best-selling rock bands of all time with more than 80 million records sold worldwide, Foreigner hits include “Hot Blooded,” “Cold As Ice,” “Feels Like the First Time,” and “I Want to Know What Love Is.”

In April 2023, Syracuse Graduate Employees United became the newest union at Syracuse University after a successful two-year campaign organizing over 1,100 graduate students.

Now, a year later, that movement has gained steam. Hundreds of workers have attended labor rallies at Syracuse University, two new groups of workers are seeking to form their own unions, and established unions are bargaining now for new contracts.

Workers’ demands vary, but most say they’re seeking higher pay, better healthcare and more favorable sick leave policies.

Labor organizing efforts and support for unions have seen a rise in popularity since 2022.

Around 71% of Americans approve of labor unions and union petitions are being filed at higher rates than previous years, according to Gallup polling. Higher education is no different. Forty-one new student and faculty unions formed in 2022 and the first half of 2023. Seven of the 30 bargaining units formed by graduate students in 2022 and 2023 were formed in New York. However, Syracuse University does not house just student- or faculty-led unions. Unions for police officers, parking employees, and facilities workers are also present on campus.

According to Syracuse Common Councilor Pat Hogan, the growth of unionization efforts on campus can have an impact on the city as a whole.

“It is my belief that many of the people that work in these unions are city residents and these folks are the sinew and bone of the whole university,” Hogan said. “It’s embarrassing that folks have to fight so hard to get what’s due to them.”

While a 2015 Trulia study labeled Syracuse one of the most affordable cities in the country, the city has recently had one of the highest rent increases in the country with housing costs rising 39% since 2020. With housing, groceries, and transportation costs rising across the nation and within the city, more workers are willing to join unionization efforts for higher wages and better working conditions.

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