sorry for dropping a turd and running in this thread, but having watched the Lions yesterday, I feel we're them - a chance to be spoiler (i.e. vs. Clemson) - not a chance to make the playoffs (metaphor for top-tier bowl).
And the folks saying "well we've got 'Bama transfers" - these aren't top-of-the-depth-chart guys.
Yet ours WERE. We "lost" (if you can call it that) guys who are the identity of the team. Losing Chestnut to LSU -- what if we lost Andre Cisco?
I understand the point of view you're expressing, but I think your perspective doesn't apply the correct lens on the transfers we brought in.
We've gone through this analysis before. Jaeden Gould had COMMITABLE
offers from Alabama, USC, Penn State, Michigan, Notre Dame, Clemson Florida State, Texas -- to go along with dozens of offers from programs like Tennessee, Wisconsin, Oklahoma, A&M, Florida, and on and on. Let that list sink in before you keep reading.
Jayden Bellamy had offers from Notre Dame, Clemson, Penn State, Ohio State, LSU, and Michigan -- to go along with dozens of offers from the likes of Oklahoma, Wisconsin, Tennessee, Nebraska, etc.
Braylen Ingraham had committable offers out of high school from Alabama [where he ended up], Georgia, Ohio State, Michigan, LSU, Clemson, and Texas to go along with Auburn, Florida, Oklahoma, Florida State, Wisconsin, and many others.
You can't lament losing players to bigger programs, and then dismiss what the coaching staff has done bringing in transfer replacements with BETTER offer lists than the guys we lost.
How will it shake out in the end? We'll see -- but our fanbase would have gone berserk if we'd landed any one of those players out of HS, and we landed three.
Which is why -- contrary to the theme of your OP -- the portal is an opportunity for Syracuse to elevate the overall talent level. We're going to lose guys, too -- but that doesn't mean that the sky is falling. Every year is going to be out-and-out free agency.