Winning Plays - Wagner | Syracusefan.com

Winning Plays - Wagner

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: S45, S16, S49, S50, S35, W41, S30, S35, S4, S45 = 368/10 = S37 with 632 yards to go.

KO: W25, W25, W25, W25, W25, W26, W25, W33, W25, W25
Total: Syracuse 8 Wagner 2
P: none
Total: Syracuse 0 Wagner 0
FG: Good from 20
Total: Syracuse 1 Wagner 0
XP: Good, Good, Good, Good, Good, Good, Good, Good
Total: Syracuse 8 Wagner 0
Kicking plays total: Syracuse 17 Wagner 2

1r: 4, 4, 7, 6, 4TD, 5, 13(p), 2, 7, 13, 1, 9, 5, 90, 8TD, 0, 11, 18, -2v
Total: Syracuse 16 Wagner 3
1p: 20(15), 9, 18, 17, 7(15), 32, 22, 11, 15, 12, 5
Total: Syracuse 11 Wagner 0
First Down Total: Syracuse 27 Wagner 3
2r: 0, 3(4), 0, 21, 21(3), 6TD, 18(19), 4(5), 2(6), 2(5), -2v
Total: Syracuse 7 Wagner 4
2p: 16(6), 8(6), 6(1), 6(8), 14(5), 9(1)
Total: Syracuse 6 Wagner 0
Second Down Total: Syracuse 13 Wagner 4
3r: 1TD, 60TD, 1(2), 16(1), 10(1), 1(4), 9(3), -2v
Total: Syracuse 6 Wagner 2
3p: 16TD
Total: Syracuse 1 Wagner 0
Third Down Total: Syracuse 7 Wagner 2
4r: 3(1)
Total: Syracuse 1 Wagner 0
4p: none
Total: Syracuse 0 Wagner 0
Fourth Down Total: Syracuse 1 Wagner 0

Total on running plays: Syracuse 30 Wagner 9
Total on passing plays: Syracuse 18 Wagner 0
Total on plays from scrimmage: Syracuse 48 Wagner 9

Penalties not tacked on to plays: -5, -5, -10, -15, -5 Syracuse 0 Wagner 5

Game total when SYRACUSE had the ball: Syracuse 65 Wagner 16

Big Plays: 38KOR(p), 20 yard pass, 60 yard TD run, 32 yard pass, 21 yard run, 26 yard INTERCEPTION -TD, 21 yard run, 90 yard run


When WAGNER had the ball:

Drive Starts: W25, W25, W25, W25, W25, W26, W25, W33, W25, W25 = 259/10 = W26 with 741 to go.

KO: S45
Total: Syracuse 1 Wagner 0
P: 39 to S16, 34 to S49, 25 to 50, 37 to S35, 24 to W41, 38 to S30, 29 to S35, 45 to S4, 33 to S45
Total: Syracuse 7 Wagner 2
FG: none
Total: Syracuse 0 Wagner 0
XP: none
Total: Syracuse 0 Wagner 0
Kicking plays total: Syracuse 8 Wagner 2

1r: 6, 5, 3, 3 ,1, 0, 4, -2, 4, 1, 3, 2
Total: Syracuse 8 Wagner 4
1p: -4(s), 15
Total: Syracuse 1 Wagner 1
First Down Total: Syracuse 9 Wagner 5
2r: 3(4), 1, 1(14), 1(13), 0, 5(12), 11(6), 8(9), -2, 1(13)
Total: Syracuse 7 Wagner 3
2p: 4(13), INTERCEPTION -TD, I
Total: Syracuse 3 Wagner 0
Second Down Total: Syracuse 10 Wagner 3
3r: 3(1), 2(4), 5(12), 3(6), 1(1), 6(15), 1(14)
Total: Syracuse 5 Wagner 2
3p: I, -16(s), -9(s), I
Total: Syracuse 4 Wagner 0
Third Down Total: Syracuse 9 Wagner 2
4r: none
Total: Syracuse 0 Wagner 0
4p: none
Total: Syracuse 0 Wagner 0
Fourth Down Total: Syracuse 0 Wagner 0

Total on running plays: Syracuse 20 Wagner 9
Total on passing plays: Syracuse 8 Wagner 1
Total on plays from scrimmage: Syracuse 28 Wagner 10

Penalties not tacked on to plays: -5, -5 Syracuse 2 Wagner 0

Game total when WAGNER had the ball: Syracuse 38 Wagner 12

Big Plays: None

Overall Game Total: Syracuse 103 Wagner 28


Comments: Signs the game went well:
- We kicked off 10 times and never punted
- You have 9 placekicks to none
- You were 25-4 on plays where the foot hit the ball
- We were 27-3 on first down. They were 5-9.
- We were 13-4 on second down. They were 6-7.
- We were 7-2 on third down. They were 2-9.

It was interesting that we were the only team to try for it on fourth down, (we made it). Wagner passed the ball 6 times in a game they lost by 59 points. I’m sure it was Wagner who asked for the 10 minute quarter. They were running clock form the beginning, just wanting to get out of here with the check.

I started thinking about the “winning plays“ concept years ago when I saw a game between Florida State and South Carolina, won, ironically, by the Seminoles 59-0. My recollection is that it was not a game with big plays or big mistakes. It was a game won by winning play after play, each with steady but incremental gains by the Noles and stuffing everything the Gamecocks tried to do. After the game I had a hard time recalling a play where FSU didn’t get at least the minimum advance that they wanted or one in which USC did. I had no play-by-play available as we do now so I never charted it but I always wondered how close that game would have come to a shut-out. In 2011, I decided to actually begin to figure things out with the system I describe above. I’ve found over the years that games are never as one-sided on the field as they sometimes appear on the scoreboard and that big plays tend to have a greater impact on the game than play-to-play dominance, (which is why I’m now keeping separate track of them). But I wondered if I’ve ever seen a game that would have approximated what I think I saw in that FSU-USC game years ago. A chart of that game might have resembled this one, save for the shortened quarters. Here are the biggest blow-outs since 2011:
2022 Wagner 103-28 +75 (in 50 minutes) We won 59-0
2018 Wagner 139-65 +74 We won 62-10
2014 Pittsburgh 43-113 -68 We lost 7-30
2013 Georgia Tech 46-113 -67 We lost 0-56
2017 Central Connecticut State 132-65 +67 We won 50-7
2013 Wagner 114-63 +51 We won 54-0
2013 Florida State 55-104 -49 We lost 3-59
2016 Florida State 71-120 -49 We lost 14-45
2016 Clemson 74-120 -46 We lost 0-54
2018 Louisville 124-83 +41 We won 54-23
2015 Rhode Island 96-56 +40 We won 47-0
With the exception of the 2018 Louisville game, our true blow-outs have tended to be against FCS teams, (especially Wagner), but we’ve been on the wrong end of them 5 times against our conference brethren. But even Wagner ‘won’ 31 plays against us in this most recent game. Five of them were our penalties. They returned one kickoff to their 26 and another to their 33 after a Syracuse penalty. They stuffed Sean Tucker for 0 yards twice, 1 yard twice and 2 yards and Juwan Price for 1 and 2 yards twice in the fourth period, (you can’t call them quarters) and Carolos Del-Rio Wilson had a zero to open the 4th quarter. That’s the 16 plays they won when we had the ball. Of course, we scored on every possession except when the half and game ran out. They had a 39 yard punt to the SU 16 and a 45 yard to the SU4. They got 6 and 5 yards on their first two first down runs plus 4 yarders in the second and third periods. They ran 3 yards for a first down in the 1st quarter and 1 and 11 yards for first downs in the third quarter. The ran for 3 of 4 needed yards in the first quarter and 8 of 9 in the third on second down. They completed a 15 yard pass on first down in the first period. They never even threatened to score. That was it. 12 successful plays, (of 50), when they were on offense and 28 (of 133) overall for the game.

Some fun facts: Wagner gained 50 yards, 31 on the ground. The 1959 Syracuse team gave up 96 yards a game, 19 on the ground. Defensively, the ’59 teams, when not playing Penn State or Texas, basically turned every opponent into Wagner. Offensively, they came up a bit short of our 59 points 631 yards, 388 on the ground against the Seahawks with 39, 456 and 313 but that’s still pretty good. It would be interesting to chart the 71-0 victory over Colgate. Also, Army during the war, (1944-45), played 7 ranked teams, 11 with winning records, 2 with even records and only 3 with losing records. They went 18-0 with an average winning margin of 51-4. They turned EVERYONE into Wagner.
 

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 TOTAL: 1917/56 = S34 with 3,683 yards to go

KO: 4-2 + 9-0 + 6-0 + 5-1 + 8-2 = 32-5
P: 3-0 + 1-1 + 3-3 + 3-0 + 0-0 = 10-4
FG: 1-0 + 2-0 + 1-1 + 5-0 + 1-0 = 10-1
XP: 4-0 + 6-0 + 4-0 + 1-0 + 8-0 = 23-0
Kicking plays total: 12-2, 18-1, 14-4 + 14-1 +17-2 = 75-10

1r: 15-5 + 15-10 + 9-7 + 6-15 + 16-3 = 61-40
1p: 7-5 + 7-4 + 7-7 + 6-7 + 11-0 = 38-23
First Down Total: 22-10 + 22-14 + 16-14 + 12-22 + 27-3 = 99-63
2r: 8-3 + 10-7 + 7-7 + 3-6 + 7-4 = 35-27
2p: 7-5 + 9-3 + 3-5 + 7-5 + 6-0 = 32-18
Second Down Total: 15-8 + 19-10 + 10-12 + 10-11 +13-4 = 67-45
3r: 7-2 + 4-0 + 1-2 + 2-3 + 6-2 = 20-9
3p: 0-3 + 3-4 + 3-6 + 4-7 + 1-0 = 11-20
Third Down Total: 7-5 + 7-4 + 4-8 + 6-10 +7-2 = 31-29
4r: 0-0 + 0-1 + 0-0 + 0-0 + 1-0 = 1-1
4p: 0-0 + 0-0 + 1-0 + 0-0 + 0-0 = 1-0
Fourth Down Total: 0-0 + 0-1 + 1-0 + 0-0 + 1-0 = 2-1

Total on running plays: 30-10 + 29-18 + 17-16 + 11-24 + 30-9 = 117-77
Total on passing plays: 14-13 + 19-11 + 14-18 + 17-19 + 18-0 = 82-61
Total on plays from scrimmage: 44-23 + 48-29 + 31-34 + 28-43 + 48-9 = 199-138

Penalties not tacked on to plays: 0-16 + 1-2 + 7-4 + 3-10 + 0-5 = 11-37

Game total when SYRACUSE had the ball: 56-41 + 67-32 + 52-42 + 45-54 + 65-16 = 285-185

Comments: We’ve kicked off 37 times and punted 14 times. That’s a good trend. We are 157-75 on first and second down and 20-9 on third down runs, (which means they weren’t third and long). We are only 11-20 on third down passes.


When OPPONENT had the ball:

Drive Starts: 199/9 = L22, 269/11 = C24, 352/13 = P27, 556/14 = V40, 259/10 = W26 TOTAL: 1,635/57= O29 with 4,065 yards to go

KO: 0-2 + 2-1 + 2-3 + 1-3 + 1-0 = 6-9
P: 1-2 + 3-3 + 1-2 + 0-4 + 7-2 = 12-13
FG: 0-0 + 0-0 + 1-1 + 2-0 + 0-0 = 3-1
XP: 0-1 + 0-2 + 2-2 + 1-2 + 0-0 = 3-7
Kicking plays total: 1-5 + 5-6 + 6-8 + 4-9 + 8-2 = 24-30

1r: 7-9 + 8-8 + 8-2 + 4-9 + 8-4 = 35-32
1p: 4-3 + 1-1 + 14-10 + 10-6 + 1-1 = 30-21
First Down Total: 11-12 + 9-9 + 22-12 + 14-15 + 9-5 = 65-53
2r: 3-5 + 5-4 + 3-4 + 3-7 + 7-3 = 21-23
2p: 7-3 + 2-3 + 6-13 + 7-7 + 3-0 = 25-26
Second Down Total: 10-8 + 7-7 + 9-17 + 10-14 + 10-3 = 46-49
3r: 3-2 + 0-3 + 1-2 + 0-1 + 5-2 = 9-10
3p: 3-3 + 6-2 + 5-8 + 9-2 + 4-0 = 27-15
Third Down Total: 6-5 + 6-5 + 6-10 + 9-3 + 9-2 = 36-25
4r: 2-0 + 0-0 + 1-1 + 0-0 + 0-0 = 3-1
4p: 0-0 + 1-0 + 0-0 + 1-1 + 0-0 = 2-1
Fourth Down Total: 2-0 + 1-0 + 1-1 + 1-1 + 0-0 = 5-2

Total on running plays: 15-16 + 13-15 + 13-9 + 7-17 + 20-9 = 68-66
Total on passing plays: 14-9 + 10-6 + 25-31 + 27-16 + 8-1 = 84-63
Total on plays from scrimmage: 29-25 + 23-21 + 38-40 + 34-33 + 28-10 = 152-129

Penalties not tacked on to plays: 6-2 + 1-0 + 3-2 + 5-3 + 2-0 = 17-7

Game total when OPPONENT had the ball: 36-32 + 29-27 + 47-50 + 43-45 + 38-12 = 193-166

Comments: Being 30-24 when they kick the ball vs. 10-75 when we kick the ball is a very big stat.
 

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 We’ve ‘won’ 4 of 5 games
TOTAL: Syracuse 478 opponents 352 = +126
Totals since 2016: Syracuse has won 7,120 plays, (49.0%) and 29 games, (37.7%). The opposition has won 7,406 plays and 48 games. They’ve obtained their goals on 286 more plays than we have in 77 games, an average of 3.71 plays a game.
 

CA Monk

I'm Woke, But I'm Very Groggy.
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Amazing. You are not a number cruncher, you’re a number pulverizer.

I wonder. When a captcha code asks if you're a robot can you honestly say, “I am not a robot.”
 

SWC75

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Amazing. You are not a number cruncher, you’re a number pulverizer.

I wonder. When a captcha code asks if you're a robot can you honestly say, “I am not a robot.”


And I explain all the reasons why I should not be considered a robot.
 

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