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

Orangeyes Daily Articles for Wednesday for Football

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No recent Cali or Iggy awards; Mr Irrelevant
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Welcome to National Ketchup Day!

June 5 is National Ketchup Day on the National Day Calendar and we are celebrating the most popular condiment in the U.S. Let's dip right into the origins and history of this food condiment day and see why this red sauce is a staple on our tables across the nation.

Ketchup comes from the Chinese word kê-tsiap that dates back to 300 BC in China. Kê-tsiap was a sauce made from fermented fish, consisting of anchovies or oysters, mushrooms, and walnuts. The sauce became very popular with the British during the 17th century when British sailors came across a local fish sauce while in Southeast Asia. In fact, British sailors were known to add the fish sauce to their crackers and meats.


SU News

(youtube; podcast; No Destination)


We sat down with new Syracuse head football coach, Fran Brown, and his sons, to Discuss Football, Family, Syracuse, and more!

Fran Brown on No Destination podcast discusses getting into coaching, NIL, love for football & more (247sports; McAllister)

Syracuse football head coach Fran Brown appeared on the latest episode of the No Destination podcast released Tuesday night. He was interviewed for approximately 40 minutes. You can click the link in the previous sentence, check out the embedded video below or listen to any of your favorite podcasting locations.

During the podcast, he spoke about a variety of topics including how he got into coaching at the collegiate level which started with success at the little league level.

"I was actually Franny's (coach's son), I think he was six years old, I was the head coach of the B team," Brown said. "They didn't even let me coach the A team. So I was the head coach of the B team and we kind of beat everybody. Our team was kind of loaded too. To like Franny and one of my best friends that I grew up, Dajuan Wagner, his son DJ Wagner who just end up going to Arkansas. He was like the running back on our team. There were a bunch of kids, little Mikey Davis, a bunch of little dudes. And we literally went undefeated, beat every team. We would go scrimmage all the A teams, beat all them. I always mess with coaches that I was so good at beating the head coach of the B team I went from coaching little league straight to college. So the next year I went and coached college.



"Just knowing people. Right place right time. Just working. When you work and keep putting that positive energy out there in the world, just constantly doing the right thing. I was coaching Paul VI secondary, I was coaching Franny and them B team, and then I was the manager of the hospital. Environmental services. I worked for company and I did that during the night shift. I was doing everything. I was just hustle man. Trying to make sure I could make enough money to provide for him and my wife. She was in school, just got done nursing, she had just become an RN. I was doing that, just trying to make sure I could use my degree. Some days I'd be substituting (teaching) in the daytime. I think the year before that I was the freshman basketball coach. So I coached freshmen at my high school one year."
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Syracuse Football: On3 has Rutgers, 'Cuse as leaders for 4-star, top-15 QB Derek Zammit (itlh; Alder)

Derek Zammit, a four-star quarterback and a top-300 national prospect in the 2026 class from New Jersey, holds a Syracuse football offer and has visited the Hill at least twice, according to recruiting services.

The 6-foot, 190-pound Zammit is a standout rising junior signal-caller at DePaul Catholic High School in Wayne, N.J. You can check out some of his sophomore year statistics during the 2023 season for DePaul Catholic via the MaxPreps Web site.


While it's relatively early on in his recruiting process, per his X page, Zammit has already amassed roughly 15 high-major offers.

On February 20 of this year, he said that he picked up a scholarship offer from the new 'Cuse staff, led by head coach and ace recruiter Fran Brown.

Syracuse football faces steep competition for 2026 four-star quarterback Derek Zammit.

According to his X account, beyond the Orange, Zammit's full offer sheet includes schools such as Boston College, Virginia, UCF, Pittsburgh, UNLV, Purdue, USF, Illinois, Cincinnati, Virginia Tech, Mississippi State, Rutgers, Duke and Wake Forest.
...


Syracuse football named in top 8 for 3-star Class of 2025 wide receiver from Alabama (PS; $; Leiker)

A three-star Class of 2025 wide receiver from Alabama is considering Syracuse football for a potential commitment.

Daylyn Upshaw announced his top eight programs on Monday night, naming the Orange alongside Miami, Florida, Florida State, Auburn, Georgia, Tennessee and Penn State.

He does not currently have a publicized date for his commitment.

Upshaw (5-foot-11, 175 pounds) received his offer from Syracuse on April 20, he shared on social media, while on an unofficial visit. He is the No. 27 player in his class from Alabama and the No. 102 wide receiver in the country, according to 247Sports.

Upshaw is from Phenix City, Alabama, where he plays for Central High School. The Red Devils went undefeated last year and won the Alabama 7A title.

Upshaw had 59 receptions for 1,185 yards and 15 touchdowns, according to stats listed on Central’s MaxPreps page. He was the team’s second leading receiver behind Cam Coleman, the nation’s No. 2 wide receiver and a five star in the Class of 2024 now rostered at Auburn.

Central is the alma mater of current Syracuse wide receiver Jackson Meeks.

Syracuse currently has 19 commits in its Class of 2025. It hosted its first weekend of summer official visits May 31-June 2 with prospects set to visit over at least two more weekends this month.
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Keeping Up With The 315 6-4-24 (soundcloud.com; radio; The 315)

Brian starts with his countdown to the start of Syracuse football and portal watch day 79 going into Fran Brown's first season, any roster moves to the Syracuse Men's Basketball, and more. Finally, Brian recaps Oshae Brissett being potentially the first Syracuse player to play in the NBA Finals since 1980.

Syracuse Just Signed the Fastest Man In Football Pads #CoachFranBrown #KingsoftheNorth (youtube; podcast; Big Tiger Media)

Syracuse Just Signed the Fastest Man In Football Pads

Syracuse Football: Top expert digs 'Cuse running-back room and here's why I concur (itlh; Adler)

In the upcoming 2024 season, the Syracuse football offense should prove much more balanced than a term ago, and it should be a lot of fun to watch.

This off-season, a lot of attention, understandably so, has focused on the Orange's passing attack for 2024, buoyed by rising senior quarterback Kyle McCord, a four-star transfer from Ohio State, and his array of talented wide receivers and tight ends to target in the upcoming campaign.

At the same time, I adamantly believe that the 'Cuse ground game is going to be excellent in 2024. On paper, Syracuse football has solid depth at the running-back position.

Speaking of that, not too long ago, in late May, word broke that Will Nixon would transfer from Washington to the Orange. The sophomore running back, who is the son of 'Cuse offensive coordinator Jeff Nixon, averaged 6.1 yards per carry in the 2023 season, when the Huskies reached the championship game of the College Football Playoff.

Let's look at the Syracuse football running-back group for the 2024 campaign.

Here's what the Orange's running-back room entails for the upcoming season:

•Rising junior LeQuint Allen Jr.
•Rising junior Will Nixon
Incoming freshman Yasin Willis
•Incoming freshman Jaden Hart
•Rising redshirt freshman Tyler Chandler

Allen, in 2023 as a sophomore, rushed for more than 1,000 yards and was named to the All-ACC second team. He's poised for another big season as a junior, and I assume he'll once again be the team's starting running back.

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ESPN's FPI Likes Syracuse's Schedule, Dislikes Syracuse's Roster (orangefizz.net; Aitken)


ESPN just updated its Football Power Index, and the system has two very different things to say about Syracuse football and its chances to succeed in 2024.

Let’s start with the good. According to the FPI, the Orange have the easiest schedule of any Power 4 team. No major program in the country will have as many easy games as SU does. Other ACC teams are close, such as Virginia Tech and North Carolina. Even the mighty Big Ten has a team, Rutgers, with the third-easiest set of opponents out of Power 4 schools. That’s great news for Syracuse, a team that has been held back in recent years by key losses to the ACC’s best, such as Clemson and Florida State. Unsurprisingly, SU doesn’t play either of those teams this year.

Despite the easy schedule, the FPI doesn’t love Syracuse as a team in and of itself. The Orange have an FPI of -1.2, which ranks 15 out of 17 ACC teams. Wake Forest and Virginia are ranked just barely below Syracuse, with scores of -1.3 and -1.4, respectively.
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Syracuse football 2024 opponent preview: Ohio Bobcats (TNIAAM; Ostrowski)

The countdown to college football is on once again! With the Syracuse Orange due to kick off the Fran Brown era in three short months, our Get to Know Your Orange Man series is underway to get you familiar with each player on the roster. It’s also time to break down each of SU’s 12 regular season opponents, one at a time.


We’ll start things in Week 1, where the Orange open up in the Dome for the third straight season. The last time they didn't was against this very program:


Ohio Bobcats

School: Ohio University

Nickname: Bobcats

Mascot: Rufus

#BRAND Slogan: #OUohyeah

Alternate #BRAND Slogan Suggestion: “The OTHER Ohio from the OTHER, OTHER Athens”

Recommended Blog: Hustle Belt

Conference: MAC

History vs. Syracuse: The Bobcats are winless in three games against SU. Their last meeting was the 2021 season opener, when some kid named Sean Tucker exploded for 181 rushing yards and a TD in a 29-9 ‘Cuse victory. The other games in the series were both played over 100 years ago - and were both shutouts.

Barstool Sports Arizona Bowl - Wyoming v Ohio
Photo by Chris Coduto/Getty Images

Coach: Tim Albin, fourth season. Albin unexpectedly began his DI head coaching career against Syracuse when Frank Solich stepped down from the position due to health reasons. After a rough start with Ohio, Albin rebounded to lead back-to-back 10-win teams, both of which included Bowl victories. Albin’s first head coaching job was at his alma mater of Northwestern Oklahoma State. After three years as the offensive coordinator/OL coach, he was promoted to HC, a job he also held for three seasons. In 1999, Albin’s Rangers went a perfect 13-0, beating Georgetown (sadly, the college in Kentucky, not the Hoyas) to win the NAIA National Championship. He departed for Solich’s Nebraska Cornhuskers after that and, following a brief layover at North Dakota State, also followed him to Ohio in 2005.
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Get to Know Your Orange Man: #95 DL Michael Nwokocha (TNIAAM; Wall)

It’s time to start preparing for the 2024 Syracuse Orange football season. We’re going through the roster to take a look at each Syracuse player as we get to know a lot of new faces to kick off the Fran Brown Era


Up next is...

Name: Michael Nwokocha

Position: Defensive line

Year: Junior

Height: 6’5”

Weight: 290 lbs

Hometown: Dallas, TX

High School/Previous College: Lake Highlands/ Tyler Junior College

2023 stats:

At Tyler Junior College, Nwokocha played five games and recorded 10 tackles and two sacks.

2024 projections:

A coveted JUCO prospect, Nwokocha is going to be counted on to be part of the defensive line rotation. He’s got the size to handle snaps on the interior as Syracuse looks to improve their performance against the run in 2024.


How’d he get here?: Chose the Orange over Mississippi State. Also had offers from Georgia and TCU.

What’d recruiting sites say?: Four stars from On3 and Rivals and three stars from 247 and ESPN

Social Media Info:

Twitter is @MichaelKocha1

Interesting nugget o’interest:

Tyler JC has produced several NFL players, but their most famous alum is Miami Heat forward Jimmy Butler. We don’t know if Michael has plans on starting his own coffee company.
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Syracuse Remains Ahead of National APR Curve - Syracuse University Athletics (cuse.com)

For the 12th year in a row Syracuse University Athletics scored higher than a 982 in the NCAA Academic Progress Rate (APR) program. Syracuse's 2022-23 APR is 987, a two-point increase from last year's 985, and three points better than the national average of 984. The Orange women's cross country and women's volleyball teams posted perfect 1,000 APR multi-year marks. It is the fifth consecutive year that the women's volleyball team has posted a perfect multi-year APR. The APR, which began in 2006, is a team-based metric accounting for the retention and eligibility of current student-athletes.

"Syracuse Student-Athletes continue to demonstrate both athletic and academic excellence," said Assistant Provost for Student-Athlete Academic Development Tommy Powell. "This sustained APR success demonstrates how important a degree from Syracuse University is to each student-athlete and how it will prepare them for life beyond athletics."
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ACC News

https://www.wnct.com/news/north-car...dates-bill-due-to-college-sports-uncertainty/ (RX; HM)


In a move reflecting volatile and changing times in college athletics, North Carolina state legislators advanced a bill Tuesday that would require the state’s two largest public universities to play each other annually in football and basketball and play three other top public system schools regularly.

Under the measure, which cleared the House committee on universities with no debate, the football and men’s and women’s basketball teams at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and N.C. State University would be required to play each other at least once annually.

The bill also would direct the Wolfpack and Tar Heels to play East Carolina University, Appalachian State University or the University of North Carolina at Charlotte at least once every year in those sports.
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Pittsburgh adds Delaware to 2029 football schedule (fbschedules.com; Kelley)

The Pittsburgh Panthers have added the Delaware Blue Hens to their 2029 football schedule, according to an announcement by the University of Delaware.

Pitt will host Delaware at Acrisure Stadium in Pittsburgh, Pa., on Saturday, Sept. 1, 2029. The game will mark the third overall meeting between the two schools on the gridiron.

In their first football meeting back in 2014, Pitt defeated Delaware 62-0. Five seasons later in 2019, the Panthers slipped by the Blue Hens, 17-14. Both games were played at Heinz Field, which is now known as Acrisure Stadium.

The Delaware Blue Hens, who currently compete in the Coastal Athletic Association in the Football Championship Subdivision (FCS), are moving up to the Football Bowl Subdivision (FBS) and will join Conference USA in 2025. Delaware will become a full member of the FBS the following season in 2026.

With the addition of Delaware, Pittsburgh now has all four non-conference opponents set for the 2029 season. The Panthers are also scheduled to host the West Virginia Mountaineers on Sept. 8 before traveling to take on the UCF Knights on Sept. 15. Pitt wraps up non-conference action at home on Sept. 22 against the Richmond Spiders.

Pitt is the third announced non-conference opponent for Delaware in 2029. The Blue Hens are also scheduled to host the Buffalo Bulls on Sept. 15 and visit the Coastal Carolina Chanticleers on Sept. 22.

Delaware was previously scheduled to host in-state rival Delaware State that season, but the status of that contest is uncertain.

Delaware now has six future games scheduled against power opponents. The Blue Hens will visit Colorado and Wake Forest in 2025, Virginia in 2026, Penn State in 2027, Maryland in 2028, and Pitt in 2029.


2025 CFB Hall of Fame Ballot (RX; HM)

2025 CFB Hall of Fame Ballot


The 2025 College Football Hall of Fame ballot is out, and here are the FBS players and coaches nominated, with comments from the OP for the ACC-related individuals...

2025 FBS PLAYER CANDIDATE CAPSULE BIOS

First, the guys who played for [2024] ACC schools:


Russell Carter, SMU-Defensive Back-1983 unanimous First Team All-American who helped SMU to consecutive top five final rankings in 1981 (No. 5, 10-1-0) and 1982 (No. 2, 11-0-1)…Three-time All-SWC performer led Mustangs to consecutive league titles in 1981-82…SMU's all-time career leader in interceptions (18).
Matt Cavanaugh, Pittsburgh-Quarterback-1977 First Team All-American who led the Panthers to a 1976 national title…Led Pitt to three consecutive bowl wins, earning MVP honors in the 1977 Sugar and 1977 Gator bowls…Finished Pitt career ranked second all-time (behind only Tony Dorsett) with 3,916 career yards of total offense.
Aaron Donald, Pittsburgh-Defensive Tackle-2013 unanimous First Team All-American and winner of the Bednarik, Lombardi, Nagurski and Outland trophies…2013 ACC Defensive Player of the Year and two-time First Team All-Conference who led the nation with 2.2 TFL per game…Pitt's all-time leader in career (66) and single-season (28.5 in 2013) TFL.
Ken Dorsey, Miami (FL)-Quarterback-2002 First Team All-American who led the Canes to back-to-back BCS Championship games, winning the national title his junior season…Two-time Big East Co-Offensive Player of the Year and 2001 Maxwell Player of the Year…Left Miami as the school record holder in career total offense and passing yards.
Levar Fisher, North Carolina State-Linebacker-Two-time First Team All-American and finalist for the Nagurski Trophy as a senior…2001 ACC Defensive Player of the Year and two-time First Team All-ACC performer who led the league in tackles (163) in 2000…Four-year starter and the Pack's all-time career leader in tackles (492).
Marvin Harrison, Syracuse-Kick Returner/Wide Receiver-1995 First Team All-American as a kick returner and 1995 Big East Special Teams Player of the Year…Three-time All-Big East selection who set a conference record with a 94-yard punt return for a TD in 1995…Left Syracuse as the school's all-time receiving leader (2,718 yards).
Craig Heyward, Pittsburgh-Running Back-1987 consensus First Team All-American who led the nation in rushing his final season and finished fifth in Heisman voting…Left Pitt as the second-leading rusher in school history (behind only Tony Dorsett) with 3,086 career rushing yards…Rushed for at least 100 yards in every game of 1987 season.
DeSean Jackson, California-Return Specialist/Wide Receiver-Two-time First Team All-American (as a specialist), earning consensus honors in 2006, and Randy Moss Award winner as the nation's top kick returner…Earned First Team All-Pac-10 honors as a receiver and punt returner in 2006…Cal's career leader in punt return average (16.7) and punt return TDs (6).
Sebastian Janikowski, Florida State-Placekicker-Two-time First Team All-American, earning consensus honors in 1998 and unanimous accolades in 1999…Only two-time recipient of the Lou Groza Award (1998, 1999)…Helped FSU to consecutive BCS Championship appearances, winning the national title at the 2000 Sugar Bowl.
Todd Lyght, Notre Dame-Defensive Back-Two-time First Team All-American, earning unanimous honors in 1989 and consensus laurels in 1990…Led Irish to 1988 National Championship and perfect 12-0 season as well as national title game appearance in 1991 Orange Bowl…Thorpe Award finalist who posted 11 career interceptions.
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ACC Network's Eric Mac Lain 'Jacked Up' to See NC State's Revamped Offense Stream of NCAA Football (cbssports.com; video; McLain)


With Grayson McCall, Jordan Waters, Justin Joly, Wesley Grimes and Noah Rogers all being inserted from the transfer portal along with Kevin Concepcion's return, Eric Mac Lain of the ACC Network discusses how excited he is to see the Pack's offense.

ACC football programs ranked by 2022-23 Academic Progress Rate (usatoday.com; Haley)

The NCAA released the Academic Progress Rate data for the 2022-23 athletic calendar on Tuesday, and the Duke Blue Devils finished with 14 perfect scores, including teams like men’s lacrosse and softball that also competed for national championships. Of all FBS schools, only the Notre Dame Fighting Irish gathered more.

The grades come as no surprise with Duke’s reputation as one of the best universities in the country. In the most recent rankings for the U.S. News, Duke slotted in as the second-best college in the Atlantic Coast Conference.

However, only two FBS football teams earned the hallowed 1,000 grade, and neither of them came from the ACC. So which football teams in the ACC finished with the highest marks in terms of academic progress?

Here are the conference rankings for the 2022-23 data (It’s important to note that the data comes from a previous academic year, so future ACC members California, Stanford, and SMU are not included in the following list).

14 Syracuse

APR Multi-Year Rate: 958

13 Virginia Tech

APR Multi-Year Rate: 969

12 Georgia Tech


APR Multi-Year Rate: 969
...


Links, News and Rumors 2024 June 4 (RX; HM)

Links, News and Rumors 2024 June 4

From FBSchedules' "15 FBS teams not playing an FCS opponent in 2024":

NOTRE DAME

2024 schedule: at Texas A&M, vs. Northern Illinois, at Purdue, vs. Miami (Ohio), vs. Louisville, vs. Stanford, at Georgia Tech, vs. Navy, vs. Florida State, vs. Virginia, vs. Army, at USC
Prior to hosting Tennessee State last season, Notre Dame hadn’t played an opponent that was considered a “non-major” at game-time since 1941, when it traveled to face Carnegie Mellon in Pittsburgh, Pa. The Irish have no future games scheduled with an FCS opponent.

VIRGINIA TECH

2024 non-conference schedule: at Vanderbilt (Aug. 31), vs. Marshall (Sept. 7), at Old Dominion (Sept. 14), vs. Rutgers (Sept. 21)
Virginia Tech’s last FCS opponent was in 2022 against the Wofford Terriers, which resulted in a 27-7 Hokies victory. The only FCS matchup on Virginia Tech’s future schedule is against VMI in 2026.

_____
Also from FBSchedules, "Notre Dame adds Boise State to 2025 football schedule":


Notre Dame will host Boise State at Notre Dame Stadium in South Bend, Ind., on Saturday, Oct. 4, 2025. The game will mark the first-ever meeting between the two schools on the gridiron.
Per Bronco Nation News, the Broncos will receive a $1.35 million guarantee for the game...
...

Georgia Tech's Haynes King Named One Of College Football's Most Dynamic Athletes at Quarterback (SI; Caudell)

Georgia Tech's Haynes King was one of the most impactful transfers in all of college football, yet he is still flying under the radar heading into the 2024 season. King helped make Georgia Tech one of the best offenses in the ACC and he is back to lead this group, which returns most of its starts in 2024. King was one of the top dual-threat quarterbacks in the country, not just the ACC, and in a recent ranking on 247Sports, King was ranked as the No. 6 most dynamic athlete at the quarterback position by analyst Brad Crawford:

"The former Texas A&M signal-caller came into his own last fall at with a standout season and now has the Yellow Jackets thinking dark-horse ACC title bid ahead of the new season. The former four-star is beginning to show some of the traits that made him such a coveted prospect as a top signal-caller coming out of Longview (Texas) several years ago. If has one fault, it's that he sometimes trust his arm too much. Giveaways is not what the Yellow Jackets need. However, this offense unlocked a different level of his game in 2023 after he rushed for 737 yards, nearly 700 yards more than his previous career-best total."


"King was one of only two players in the nation with at least 2,700 passing yards, 600 rushing yards, 25 touchdown passes, and five touchdown runs this season (joining LSU’s Jayden Daniels), and one of only six ACC players to achieve those numbers in a regular season since 2000. He led the ACC in touchdown passes and was fourth in passing yards. He is back for another season on The Flats and might be the best quarterback in the conference this year. One reason to buy into the Yellow Jackets is that they might have the best quarterback on the field against many of their opponents."
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ACC Coaches Talk Anonymously About Georgia Tech Football Entering the 2024 Season (SI; Caudell)

Last season, Georgia Tech had an impressive turnaround from what the program had been doing under former head coach Geoff Collins. Brent Key led the Yellow Jackets to a 7-6 record, their first bowl appearance since 2018, and their first bowl win since 2016. Georgia Tech had one of the top offenses in the ACC and return most of that unit for the 2024 season. Although they have a tough schedule ahead of them (nothing new), this team could make noise in the ACC this season and not many people are talking about them.

It seems that after what he was able to do last year, Key and his program have earned the respect of coaches around the ACC. Athlon Sports recently released an article detailing anonymous quotes from coaches in the ACC talking about each member school. Here is what was said about Georgia Tech:


“Brent [Key] did one of the best jobs in the entire FBS last season; he doesn’t get enough credit for bringing back the program’s tough identity and fighting through without the resources you get at their competitors."

"They’ve figured out what works, who they are, and they embrace physical football like they did under [former head coach] Paul [Johnson]."

"Probably the best thing you can say about them is that a few guys other coaches in the league thought would jump in the portal didn’t. That’s how you really turn things around, if you can keep those breakout young guys and build off of them."

"They’re not an elite-ceiling program like FSU or Clemson, but they’re back on track to be competitive.”



Key has shown the ability to get the most out of his teams while at Georgia Tech and dating back to when he was the interim head coach, Key has pulled off upsets before as the underdog and looking at the schedule, he is going to have to do that multiple times this year. His team has the chance to make noise and could be the most underrated team in the ACC- maybe the country- in 2024.

On a recent episode of the Late Kick, Josh Pate called the Yellow Jackets one of the nation's most underrated teams going into the year:

"Georgia Tech I could also call a little bit underrated. The difference with Georgia Tech is the schedule is pretty stiff, I am not going to lie and they have Georgia every year. They were 7-5 last year and their win total is at 5.5, I think due in large part to how tough it is. Haynes King is still there, that is their quarterback, their offense is top ten in returning production this year, a deep wide receiver room. The defense was bad last year, 123rd in yards allowed last year I believe, but they overhauled their defensive staff, they overhauled their roster on the defensive side. They are the inverse of Nebraska in the sense that if I get C+ or B- defensive play, that should be good to get over 5.5 wins"
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ACC football power rankings: Florida State, Miami battle for No. 1 spot in 2024 summer edition (247sports.com; Nagel)

The future of the ACC itself remains uncertain as ongoing legal battles involving several members take place
, but that should not distract from what could prove to be a thrilling race for a conference championship in 2024. The league expands to 17 members this year with California, SMU and Stanford set to officially join soon. But how much will those newcomers affect the ACC title race?

Clemson, Florida State and Miami expect to still be the top contenders in the ACC while also making a push for a spot in the expanded College Football Playoff. The reigning conference champion Seminoles own 12 consecutive wins against ACC opponents dating back to the 2022 season. Extending that streak will not be easy in 2024 with another large batch of incoming transfers.

As things stand less than 12 weeks out from the season opener, there is an obvious top-tier of contenders in the ACC, but several dark horses worth keeping an eye on.

Below are the updated ACC college football power rankings for the 2024 season heading into the summer:

17. STANFORD CARDINAL

ACC newcomer Stanford faces an uphill climb back to bowl eligibility. The Cardinal won just three games in Year 1 under head coach Troy Taylor and are not expected to experience much improvement overall in 2024. Returning wide receiver Elic Ayomanor is the biggest bright spot for Stanford as one of the best in the country at that position. He became the first player at Stanford to surpass 1,000 yards receiving in a season since J.J. Arcega-Whiteside did so back in 2018. The Cardinal defense does return each of its top four leading tacklers from last season. However, Stanford had one of the worst scoring defenses in the entire FBS, allowing 37.7 points per game. That is still a concern heading into 2024.

16. VIRGINIA CAVALIERS

If there is any reason to believe Virginia can finally find success under third-year head coach Tony Elliott, it is the number of returning starters heading into 2024. The Cavaliers return 14 players that started in at least six games last season on either offense or defense. Competition likely continues between quarterbacks Tony Muskett and Anthony Colandrea, who was very up and down as a true freshman. Still, that experience will benefit him as he looks to regain the starting job. Injuries really set Virginia back defensively in 2023, but in return that gives coordinator John Rudzinski much needed depth to work with.‌

15. WAKE FOREST DEMON DEACONS

Wake Forest took a major step backward in 2023 after consecutive eight-win seasons. The Demon Deacons saw their seven-year bowl game streak come to an end with just four wins. Head coach Dave Clawson has an opportunity to get Wake Forest back on track in 2024 with a likely upgrade at quarterback. Former Louisiana Tech transfer Hank Bachmeier enters his sixth year of college and is an anticipated starter for the Demon Deacons. He spent the first four years of his career at Boise State. A strong start to the schedule will be important for Wake Forest, which does not leave Winston-Salem until October.

14. BOSTON COLLEGE EAGLES

Bill O'Brien makes his return to the college level as a head coach for the first time since 2013 when he led Penn State for two seasons. The New England native takes over at Boston College following a late departure by Jeff Hafley during the coaching carousel. The Eagles seemed to be trending up with their first bowl win in seven seasons, but now hit somewhat of a reset button with O'Brien taking over. The quarterback guru could be a strong pairing with returning starter Thomas Castellanos, who flashed at times last season as a dual-threat weapon. The offense will not be a concern for Boston College. However, the defense could be an issue.

13. PITTSBURGH PANTHERS

It is a bit hard to believe Pittsburgh is just three years removed from an ACC title in 2021. The Panthers had their worst season yet under head coach Pat Narduzzi in 2023, winning just three games. Departures really gutted the defensive side with edge rusher Dayon Hayes and linebacker Solomon DeShields leaving this spring. The Pittsburgh offense returns nine starters from a unit that ranked last in the ACC in scoring. If there is one thing that remained consistent under Narduzzi, it is player development, something that will be crucial for the Panthers in 2024.

12. DUKE BLUE DEVILS

The Mike Elko era was brief, but notably successful. Now, new head coach Manny Diaz steps in to lead the Blue Devils, aiming to maintain and build on that momentum. Duke saw some key players enter the transfer portal after the coaching change, including standout quarterback Riley Leonard, running back Jordan Waters and edge rusher RJ Oben. The Blue Devils did their best to try and replace those departures, landing former Texas backup quarterback Maalik Murphy to command the offense. While there is returning experience scattered throughout the roster, too many uncertainties remain to elevate Duke into the top half of the ACC heading into the summer.

11. SYRACUSE ORANGE

Syracuse might be one of the hardest power conference teams to gauge heading into the summer months. The Orange underwent a massive roster overhaul upon new head coach Fran Brown arriving in Upstate New York. Former Ohio State quarterback Kyle McCord headlines that long list of newcomers and should be among the passing leaders in the ACC this season. Returning 1,000-yard rusher LeQuint Allen will open up the offense a bit, too. The talent level is certainly raised at Syracuse in just a matter of months under the new coaching staff. The big question remains whether Brown can have success early as a first-time head coach having spent the past two years as an assistant at Georgia.
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South Florida Football Will Break Ground For On-Campus Stadium Before UAB Game (SI; Londergan)

The South Florida Bulls currently play their home games in Raymond James Stadium, home of the NFL's Tampa Bay Buccaneers. Fans of the program have long clamored for an on-campus stadium. and it was announced this past fall that the project was formally approved by the state of Florida.

This week, USF gave fans another exciting announcement, confirming that a contract had been approved by the USF board of trustees with Manhattan Construction Company. The school will formally break ground on the 35,000-seat stadium on Friday, October 18. USF will play their homecoming football game against the UAB Blazers the following day.

USF football are entering their second season under head coach Alex Golesh. Golesh led the Bulls to one of the biggest turnarounds in college football last season, winning seven games after winning four games in the previous three seasons combined.

South Florida begin their 2024 season on August 31 when they host Bethune-Cookman. UAB comes to town on October 19th.
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Virginia Tech Football: 3 trap games on the Hokies 2024 schedule (fightinggobbler.com; Roche)

I don't think Roche knows what a trap game is...


The Virginia Tech football team will enter the 2024 season as a team that could contend for a spot in the ACC Championship game in December. For that to happen, they will have to navigate their way through a loaded ACC and have some things break their way.

On paper, their conference schedule is doable in terms of being in the race in the ACC with no Florida State, Louisville or North Carolina State, the three teams who beat them last season when they finished 5-3. With a lot of retainment on both sides of the ball, expectations are high in Blacksburg.



However, their schedule does offer some very interesting potential road blocks with trap games this fall. Here are three of the biggest trap games on Virginia Tech’s schedule.

Sept. 21 vs. Rutgers

This has the makings of a very good non-conference game in Blacksburg. It will be the fourth and final non-conference game for Virginia Tech after opening the season at Vanderbilt, home against Marshall, and a road game at Old Dominion.



The Hokies will be looking to avenge a 35-16 loss last season in New Jersey and the Scarlet Knights will be entering Lane Stadium with a new quarterback after Gavin Wimsatt entered the transfer portal. Minnesota transfer Athan Kaliamanis was named QB1 by head coach Greg Schiano. This will be a good Rutgers team that comes to Blacksburg, but the Hokies can’t get caught looking past them with their ACC opener six nights later at Miami on Sept. 27 before a cross-country flight the following weekend to new ACC member Stanford.

Nov. 2 at Syracuse

The Orange fired coach Dino Babers and hired Georgia assistant Fran Brown to lead Syracuse. During his first few months on the job with the Orange, he got Ohio State transfer quarterback Kyle McCord to commit to the Orange and landed former Virginia Tech commit Marcellus Barnes, a four-star cornerback in the Class of 2024.



This game will be a tough one for Virginia Tech who will be hosting Clemson the following weekend. Syracuse is going to be a tough team to play in 2024 and even tougher at home in the dome. This is a game that could very easily crush the Hokies ACC hopes if they drop it on the road with the Tigers a week later.

Nov. 23 at Duke

You might be saying, wait, Duke, a trap game for Virginia Tech? Well, yes. The Hokies will be coming off their second bye of the season after playing Clemson at home in what will be a very emotional game. The result of that game very likely will go a very long way toward determining their ACC Championship Game hopes.
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https://athlonsports.com/college-fo...says-acc-conference-collapse-would-get-sticky (athlonsports.com; Spor)

Recent lawsuits have brought up questions about the future of the ACC. If it were to collapse, 17 teams would have to look for a new home.
Currently, the conference is still intact, but things could change. All it took for the Pac-12 to collapse was for USC and UCLA to leave, and then the other teams got worried they'd be left behind.
ESPN's Paul Finebaum thinks things could get very sticky if the ACC were to collapse. He mentioned that if the conference does indeed fall apart, there would be certain teams that none of the power conferences would have an interest in.

“I think the real concern for everyone in this group is what happens if the ACC starts to implode even more than it currently is,” Finebaum said on McElroy and Cubelic via On3. “And because I mean, there are certain schools that I don’t think either league really wants and then there are those who I think both covet. So I think that’s where it would get really sticky.”


ACC On The Edge, Who Breaks Out First? #FSU #Clemson #UNC (youtube; podcast; The College Football Mafia)

FSU, Clemson, and UNC all trying to get out of the ACC, Utah Becoming the Big12 Villain, 2024 Conference Payouts Show The True Gap, Bill Walton's Passing Is Truly The End of the PAC-12

Other

Onondaga County aims to bring new hotel to parking lot next to Everson Art Museum (cnycentral.com; Wight)


Onondaga County is rolling out a new initiative to create "thousands" of hotel rooms, an area Onondaga County Executive Ryan McMahon said desperately needs attention in an otherwise flourishing local economy.

"We do not have enough hotel inventory to meet the economic opportunities that are here in our community today let alone what is going to be here in 2027, 2028, and 2029," McMahon said.


McMahon - flanked by republican county legislatures and the CEO of Visit Syracuse - announced legislation intended to provide grants to hotel developers as well as a Request for Proposal (RFP) that will be put out for a hotel in a parking lot neighboring the Everson Museum of Art. The hotel would need to have at least 200 rooms, McMahon said, and would serve as convention center focused hotel to supplement the Syracuse Marriott Downtown. Working in tandem, it means the city will once again become a vialbe option for large scale conventions, which was the major concern when the owners of the Crowne Plaza announced they would convert the hotel to an apartment building, taking 277 hotel rooms offline.


McMahon said that the county had long planned for Syracuse University to convert the SU Sheraton to dormitories, a loss of about 200 hotel rooms. The Crowne Plaza was a somewhat unexpected blow.
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Ketchup is disgusting.

Sorry, i had to speak my mind.
 

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