Winning Plays - Pittsburgh | Syracusefan.com

Winning Plays - Pittsburgh

SWC75

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This season I will once again be charting Syracuse’s games in terms of “winning plays”. I look at the results of each play and decide which team got the minimum they wanted out of the play. Rather than making instinctive judgments, I use a formula:

- On first down, the offensive team wants to get at least a third of the way to a new first down: they will have two more plays before they might have to surrender the ball and if they gain that same amount of yards on each of those two plays, they’ll get the first down. If they don’t make it a third of the way to a new first down, the defense won the play.
- On second down, the offense wants to get at least halfway to a new first down by the same logic.
- On third and fourth down, they want to get the first down.
- Penalties, if added onto a play by the referees, are added on to the results above. If the offense gains 5 yards on first down but there was holding and they lost yardage instead, the defense won the play. If a running back made a 25 yard run on first and ten and the holding was 20 yards downfield, turning it into a 5 yard gain, that’s still a win for the offense. If the defense is penalized and it’s tacked on, again the net result is what is evaluated. The penalties I’ve listed negated the play entirely and are a “loss” for the penalized team and thus a win for their opponent.
- If a penalty was not tacked onto a play, it’s a lost play for the team being penalized. I'll count them separate from the other plays from scrimmage because I don't know if the intended play before the penalty would have been a run or a pass - so I wouldn't know where to put it in the chart below.
- A turnover is, obviously, a win for the team that wound up with the ball.
- On a kick-off a touchback brings the ball out to the 25 yard line. Teams still seem to be trying to kick the ball into the end zone and avoid a runback if they can, so any kick-off that results in the receiving team starting between their goal line and their 25 is a win for the kicking team. Beyond that, the receiving team wins.
- On a punt, a touchback takes the ball out of the 20. So any punt that results in the other team taking over from their goal line to their 20 is a win for the punting team. If the next change in field position is at least 40 yards, the punting team has also won the play.
- A successful place kick is, obviously, a win for the kicking team.
- Any play that results in a touchdown is, obviously, a win for that team that scores it.
- A “victory play” where a team accepts a loss just to let the clock run out, is a win for the offensive team.

I will indicate in parenthesis how many yards there were to go to get a new first down, (if other than 10), unless it was for no gain or negative yardage. If it was a touchdown, (“TD)” a scramble/sack (“S”) a victory play (“V”) or involved a penalty (P). I’ll treat a scramble or a sack as a passing play as the Cuse.com play by play now tells you when it’s either of those two. 1R means first down running plays. 1P means first down passing plays, etc.

I have decided to list the “Big Plays” at the bottom of each team’s summary. A big play is a play from scrimmage of over 20 yards, (or 20+ yards lost), kickoff returns of +25 yards, punt returns of +20, blocked kicks, missed kicks, and turnovers on fumbles, interceptions and downs.

When SYRACUSE had the ball:

Drive Starts: S35, S20, S25, S35, S28, S25, S20, S14, S25, P27, S32, S15, S1 = 348/13 = S27 with 952 yards to go

KO: P29, P25, P25, P25, S31
Total: Syracuse 3 Pittsburgh 2
P: 23 to S45, 42 to P28, 35 to P30, 50 to P40, 30 to P35, 39 to P32, 34 to P40
Total: Syracuse 2 Pittsburgh 5
FG: Good from 23, Good from 48, No Good from 46, Good from 49
Total: Syracuse 3 Pittsburgh 1
XP: None
Total: Syracuse 0 Pittsburgh 0
Kicking plays total: Syracuse 8 Pittsburgh 8

1r: 0, 8, 4, -1v, 3, 4, -1, 0
Total: Syracuse 4 Pittsburgh 4
1p: 7, 17(15), I, 7(8), I, 31, I, I, 4(5), 45, O, Safety
Total: Syracuse 6 Pittsburgh 6
First Down Total: Syracuse 10 Pittsburgh 10
2r: 0, 2(3), 4, 9(28), 0, 0, 6
Total: Syracuse 3 Pittsburgh 4
2p: 5, I, -3(5), I, I, -7(s), I, I
Total: Syracuse 1 Pittsburgh 7
Second Down Total: Syracuse 4 Pittsburgh 11
3r: 3(1), -4, 7, 2(6), 15
Total: Syracuse 3 Pittsburgh 2
3p: -8(s), 12(6), I, I, I, -2(s), I, I, -6(s)
Total: Syracuse 1 Pittsburgh 8
Third Down Total: Syracuse 4 Pittsburgh 10
4r: none
Total: Syracuse 0 Pittsburgh 0
4p: none
Total: Syracuse 0 Pittsburgh 0
Fourth Down Total: Syracuse 0 Pittsburgh 0

Total on running plays: Syracuse 10 Pittsburgh 10
Total on passing plays: Syracuse 8 Pittsburgh 21
Total on plays from scrimmage: Syracuse 18 Pittsburgh 31

Penalties not tacked on to plays: -5, -5, +15, +5, -10, +15, +5 Syracuse 5 Pittsburgh 3

Game total when SYRACUSE had the ball: Syracuse 31 Pittsburgh 42

Big Plays: 35 KOR, Interception, 31 pass, Interception, 45 pass


When PITTSBURGH had the ball:

Drive Starts: S45, P29, P28, P25, P30, P25, P40, P35, P32, P28, P40, P25, S31 = 461/13 = P35 with 839 yards to go

KO: S35, S25, S25, S25
Total: Syracuse 1 Pittsburgh 3
P: 9 to S35, 40 to S28, 32 to S20, 2yds to P27, 32 to S32, 46 to S15, 48 to S1
Total: Syracuse 4 Pittsburgh 3
FG: Good from 43
Total: Syracuse 0 Pittsburgh 1
XP: Good, Good
Total: Syracuse 0 Pittsburgh 2
Kicking plays total: Syracuse 5 Pittsburgh 9

1r:
Total: Syracuse Pittsburgh
1p:
Total: Syracuse Pittsburgh
First Down Total: Syracuse Pittsburgh
2r:
Total: Syracuse Pittsburgh
2p:
Total: Syracuse Pittsburgh
Second Down Total: Syracuse Pittsburgh
3r: 4(1), 8(4), 5(2), -2, 3(20, 1(3), 2(3)
Total: Syracuse 3 Pittsburgh 4
3p: 6(5), Interception, 5(5), 4, 6(8), 23(6), -12(s), I
Total: Syracuse 3 Pittsburgh 5
Third Down Total: Syracuse 6 Pittsburgh 9
4r: none
Total: Syracuse 0 Pittsburgh 0
4p: none
Total: Syracuse 0 Pittsburgh 0
Fourth Down Total: Syracuse 0 Pittsburgh 0

Total on running plays: Syracuse 17 Pittsburgh 30
Total on passing plays: Syracuse 10 Pittsburgh 14
Total on plays from scrimmage: Syracuse 27 Pittsburgh 44

Penalties not tacked on to plays: -5, -5, -5 Syracuse 3 Pittsburgh 0

Game total when PITTSBURGH had the ball: Syracuse 35 Pittsburgh 53

Big Plays: 28 KOR, 20 pass, 20 pass, 29 run, 20 PR, 23 pass, Safety

Overall Game Total: Syracuse 66 Pittsburgh 105

Comments: We lost this game by going 8-21 in passing plays, including 2-15 on second and third down while Pittsburgh was 13-2 on second down runs. Everything else was about even but we had nothing to offset those two deficits.

The punting was horrible for both teams in this game. The kicking team came out better in only 5 of 14 punts. Pitt gained 9 yards on their first punt due to a touchback and a penalty and 2 yards on the play where their punter lined it into his own blockers. Someone suggested that Bob Ligashesky may be over-rated as a special teams coach. We were 95-15 on kicking plays in our first 7 games, which is fantastic, (the opposition was 50-28). But in the last two games we are 15-16 while out opposition is 26-8, so Bob has some work to do.

66-105 = -39. Here are the closest games to that in the Babers Era:
2019 Syracuse 77 Clemson 113 = -36 We lost 6-41
2019 Syracuse 76 Boston College 119 = -43 We lost 27-58
2020 Syracuse 79 Duke 114 = -35 We lost 24-38
2020 Syracuse 72 Clemson 112 = -40 We lost 21-47
2021 Syracuse 64 Rutgers 101 = -37 We lost 7-17
2021 Syracuse 56 Louisville 91 = -35 We lost 3-41
 

SWC75

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SEASON TOTALS

When SYRACUSE had the ball:

Drive Starts: 341/10 = S34, 482/12 = S40, 302/11 = S27, 424/13 = S33, 368/10 =S37, 248/8 =S31, 290/12 = S24, 403/15 = S27, 348/13 = S27 TOTAL: 3,206/104 = S31 with 7,194 yards to go

KO: 4-2 + 9-0 + 6-0 + 5-1 + 8-2 + 5-0 + 3-1 + 3-2 + 3-2 = 46-10
P: 3-0 + 1-1 + 3-3 + 3-0 + 0-0 + 1-1 + 4-3 + 0-6 + 2-5 = 17-19
FG: 1-0 + 2-0 + 1-1 + 5-0 + 1-0 + 1-0 + 0-0 + 1-0 + 3-1 = 15-2
XP: 4-0 + 6-0 + 4-0 + 1-0 + 8-0 + 3-0 + 3-0 + 3-0 + 0-0 = 32-0
Kicking plays total: 12-2, 18-1, 14-4 + 14-1 + 17-2 + 10-1 + 10-4 + 7-8 + 8-8 = 110-31

1r: 15-5 + 15-10 + 9-7 + 6-15 + 16-3 + 7-9 + 7-6 + 5-8 + 4-4 = 84-67
1p: 7-5 + 7-4 + 7-7 + 6-7 + 11-0 + 5-7 + 7-6 + 6-8 + 6-6 = 62-50
First Down Total: 22-10 + 22-14 + 16-14 + 12-22 + 27-3 + 12-16 + 14-12 + 11-16 + 10-10 = 146-117
2r: 8-3 + 10-7 + 7-7 + 3-6 + 7-4 + 7-2 + 4-1 + 2-2 + 3-4 = 51-36
2p: 7-5 + 9-3 + 3-5 + 7-5 + 6-0 + 9-2 + 6-6 + 4-10 + 1-7 = 52-43
Second Down Total: 15-8 + 19-10 + 10-12 + 10-11 + 13-4 + 16-4 + 10-7 + 6-12 + 4-11 = 103-79
3r: 7-2 + 4-0 + 1-2 + 2-3 + 6-2 + 3-2 + 2-2 + 2-1 + 3-2 = 30-16
3p: 0-3 + 3-4 + 3-6 + 4-7 + 1-0 + 1-1 + 1-6 + 2-8 + 1-8 = 16-43
Third Down Total: 7-5 + 7-4 + 4-8 + 6-10 + 7-2 + 4-3 + 3-8 + 4-9 + 4-10 = 46-59
4r: 0-0 + 0-1 + 0-0 + 0-0 + 1-0 + 1-0 + 0-0 + 0-0 + 0-0 = 2-1
4p: 0-0 + 0-0 + 1-0 + 0-0 + 0-0 + 0-0 + 0-1 + 0-2 + 0-0 = 1-3
Fourth Down Total: 0-0 + 0-1 + 1-0 + 0-0 + 1-0 + 1-0 + 0-1 + 0-2 + 0-0 = 3-4

Total on running plays: 30-10 + 29-18 + 17-16 + 11-24 + 30-9 + 18-13 + 13-9 + 9-11 + 10-10 = 167-120
Total on passing plays: 14-13 + 19-11 + 14-18 + 17-19 + 18-0 + 15-10 + 14-19 + 12-28 + 8-21 = 131-139
Total on plays from scrimmage: 44-23 + 48-29 + 31-34 + 28-43 + 48-9 + 33-23 + 27-28 + 21-39 + 18-31 = 298-259

Penalties not tacked on to plays: 0-16 + 1-2 + 7-4 + 3-10 + 0-5 + 0-3 + 0-7 + 2-3 + 5-3 = 18-53

Game total when SYRACUSE had the ball: 56-41 + 67-32 + 52-42 + 45-54 + 65-16 + 43-27 + 37-39 + 30-50 +31-42 = 426-3430

Comments: In the six game winning streak, we kicked off 42 times and punted 16 times In the three game losing streak we’ve kicked off 14 times and punted 20 times. That’s a good trend. But our punting, which was 15-8 through seven games is now 17-19 after going 2-11 the last two games. We are 235-175 on first and second down and 27-14 on third down runs, (which means they weren’t third and long). We are only 15-35 on third down passes, something that could hold us back from having a really special season.


When OPPONENT had the ball:

Drive Starts: 199/9 = L22, 269/11 = C24, 352/13 = P27, 556/14 = V40, 259/10 = W26, 229/9 = NCS 25 400/13 = C31, 628/19 = ND45 461/13 = P35 TOTAL: 3,353/111= O30 with 7,747 yards to go

KO: 0-2 + 2-1 + 2-3 + 1-3 + 1-0 + 2-2 + 0-6 + 2-6 + 1-3 = 11-26
P: 1-2 + 3-3 + 1-2 + 0-4 + 7-2 + 1-3 + 0-2 + 1-3 + 4-3 = 18-24
FG: 0-0 + 0-0 + 1-1 + 2-0 + 0-0 + 0-3 + 0-2 + 0-3 + 0-1 = 3-10
XP: 0-1 + 0-2 + 2-2 + 1-2 + 0-0 + 0-0 + 1-2 + 0-5 + 0-2 = 4-16
Kicking plays total: 1-5 + 5-6 + 6-8 + 4-9 + 8-2 + 3-8 + 1-12 + 3-17 + 5-9 = 36-76

1r: 7-9 + 8-8 + 8-2 + 4-9 + 8-4 + 10-6 + 9-16 + 9-19 + 12-13 = 75-86
1p: 4-3 + 1-1 + 14-10 + 10-6 + 1-1 + 5-4 + 7-6 + 3-4 + 3-5 = 48-40
First Down Total: 11-12 + 9-9 + 22-12 + 14-15 + 9-5 + 15-10 + 16-22 + 12-23 + 15-18 = 123-126
2r: 3-5 + 5-4 + 3-4 + 3-7 + 7-3 + 3-4 + 7-18 + 8-12 + 2-13 = 41-70
2p: 7-3 + 2-3 + 6-13 + 7-7 + 3-0 + 9-6 + 3-2 + 1-3 + 4-4 = 42-41
Second Down Total: 10-8 + 7-7 + 9-17 + 10-14 + 10-3 + 12-10 + 10-20 + 9-15 + 6-17 = 83-111
3r: 3-2 + 0-3 + 1-2 + 0-1 + 5-2 + 3-5 + 3-4 + 3-4 + 3-4 = 21-27
3p: 3-3 + 6-2 + 5-8 + 9-2 + 4-0 + 7-1 + 5-2 + 6-2 + 3-5 = 48-25
Third Down Total: 6-5 + 6-5 + 6-10 + 9-3 + 9-2 + 10-6 + 8-6 + 9-6 + 6-9 = 69-52
4r: 2-0 + 0-0 + 1-1 + 0-0 + 0-0 + 0-2 + 1-2 + 0-1 + 0-0 = 4-6
4p: 0-0 + 1-0 + 0-0 + 1-1 + 0-0 + 1-1 + 0-0 + 0-0 + 0-0 = 3-2
Fourth Down Total: 2-0 + 1-0 + 1-1 + 1-1 + 0-0 + 1-3 + 1-2 + 0-1 + 0-0 = 7-8

Total on running plays: 15-16 + 13-15 + 13-9 + 7-17 + 20-9 + 16-17 + 20-40 + 20-36 + 17-30 = 141-189
Total on passing plays: 14-9 + 10-6 + 25-31 + 27-16 + 8-1 + 22-12 + 15-10 + 10-9 + 10-14 = 141-108
Total on plays from scrimmage: 29-25 + 23-21 + 38-40 + 34-33 + 28-10 + 38-29 + 35-50 + 30-45 + 27-44 = 282-297

Penalties not tacked on to plays: 6-2 + 1-0 + 3-2 + 5-3 + 2-0 + 5-1 + 4-1 + 3-1 + 3-0 = 32-10

Game total when OPPONENT had the ball: 36-32 + 29-27 + 47-50 + 43-45 + 38-12 + 46-38 + 40-63 + 36-63 + 35-53 = 350-383

Comments: Being 76-36 when they kick the ball vs. 31-110 when we kick the ball is a very big disadvantage for our opposition. We were 84-83 against opposition running plays prior to the Clemson game. We are 57-106 since.
 

SWC75

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HISTORICAL WINNING PLAYS (Babers Era – game totals only)

2016
Syracuse 101 Colgate 74 = +27
Syracuse 99 Louisville 132 = -33
Syracuse 95 South Florida 116 = -21
Syracuse 91 Connecticut 99 = -8
Syracuse 98 Notre Dame 111 = -13
Syracuse 72 Wake Forest 101 = -29
Syracuse 103 Virginia Tech 104 = -1
Syracuse 93 Boston College 84 = +9
Syracuse 74 Clemson 120 = -46
Syracuse 71 North Carolina State 103 = -32
Syracuse 71 Florida State 120 = -49
Syracuse 107 Pittsburgh 118 = -11
TOTAL: Syracuse 1075 Opponent 1282 = -207 We 'won' 2 of 12 games.

2017
Syracuse 132 Central Connecticut 65 = +67
Syracuse 104 Middle Tennessee 98 = +6
Syracuse 107 Central Michigan 100 = +7
Syracuse 80 Louisiana State 103 = -23
Syracuse 93 North Carolina State 112 = -19
Syracuse 97 Pittsburgh 96 = +1
Syracuse 95 Clemson 97= -2
Syracuse 86 Miami 119 = -33
Syracuse 90 Florida State 108 = -18
Syracuse 120 Wake Forest 125 = -5
Syracuse 96 Louisville 100 = -4
Syracuse 77 Boston College 87 = -10
TOTAL: Syracuse 1177 Opponents 1210 = -33 We ‘won’ 4 of12 games

2018
Syracuse 109 Western Michigan 96 = +13
Syracuse 139 Wagner 65 = +74
Syracuse 113 Florida State 77 = +36
Syracuse 109 Connecticut 83 = +26
Syracuse 86 Clemson 102= -16
Syracuse 99 Pittsburgh 97 = +2
Syracuse 113 North Carolina 115 = -2
Syracuse 113 North Carolina State 96 = +17
Syracuse 117 Wake Forest 107 = +10
Syracuse 124 Louisville 83 = +41
Syracuse 86 Notre Dame 99 = -13
Syracuse 110 Boston College 96 = +14
Syracuse 116 West Virginia 79 +37
TOTAL: Syracuse 1434 Opponents 1195 = +239 We ‘won’ 10 of 13 games

2019
Syracuse 104 Liberty 84 = +20
Syracuse 82 Maryland 112 = -30
Syracuse 77 Clemson 113 = -36
Syracuse 113 Western Michigan 99 =+14
Syracuse 110 Holy Cross 67 = +43
Syracuse 78 North Carolina State 100 = -22
Syracuse 92 Pittsburgh 114 = -22
Syracuse 96 Florida State 115 = -19
Syracuse 76 Boston College 119 = -43
Syracuse 107 Duke 78 = +29
Syracuse 85 Louisville 104 = -19
Syracuse 118 Wake Forest 111 = +7
TOTAL: Syracuse 1138 Opponents 1216 = -78 We ‘won’ 5 of 12 games

2020
Syracuse 70 North Carolina 114 = -44
Syracuse 78 Pittsburgh 89 = -11
Syracuse 108 Georgia Tech 102 = +6
Syracuse 79 Duke 114 = -35
Syracuse 77 Liberty 93 = -16
Syracuse 72 Clemson 112 = -40
Syracuse 76 Wake Forest 99 = -23
Syracuse 68 Boston College 96 = -28
Syracuse 76 Louisville 81 = -5
Syracuse 76 North Carolina State 108 = -32
Syracuse 82 Notre Dame 100 = -18
TOTAL: Syracuse 862 Opponents 1108 = -248 We ‘won’ 1 of 11 games

2021
Syracuse 86 Ohio U. 63 = +23
Syracuse 64 Rutgers 101 = -37
Syracuse 103 Albany 69 = +34
Syracuse 79 Liberty 83 = -4
Syracuse 79 Florida State 90 = -11
Syracuse 102 Wake Forest 92 = +10
Syracuse 79 Clemson 99 = -20
Syracuse 90 Virginia Tech 94 = -4
Syracuse 86 Boston College 79 = +7
Syracuse 56 Louisville 91 = -35
Syracuse 65 North Carolina State 88 = -23
Syracuse 67 Pittsburgh 95 = -28
TOTAL: Syracuse 956 opponents 1044 = -88 We ‘won’ 4 of 12 games

2022
Syracuse 92 Louisville 73 = +19
Syracuse 96 Connecticut 59 = +37
Syracuse 99 Purdue 92 = +7
Syracuse 88 Virginia 99 = -11
Syracuse 103 Wagner 28 = +75
Syracuse 89 North Carolina State 65 = +24
Syracuse 77 Clemson 102 = -25
Syracuse 66 Notre Dame 113 = -47
Syracuse 66 Pittsburgh 105 = -39 We’ve ‘won’ 5 of 8 games
TOTAL: Syracuse 776 opponents 736 = +40
Totals since 2016: Syracuse has won 7,418 plays, (48.8%) and 30 games, (37.0%). The opposition has won 7,791 plays and 51 games. They’ve obtained their goals on 373 more plays than we have in 80 games, an average of 4.60 plays a game. (We seem to be regressing to our mean.)
 

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