Quantcast 2008 Syracuse Football Preview: 2008 Syracuse Orange Football Preview

2008 Syracuse Orange Football Preview


2007 Syracuse Record: (2-10, 1-6 Big East)

2007 Bowl: none

Syracuse apparelSyracuse Head Coach: Greg Robinson (7-28 at Syracuse, 7-28 overall)

Offensive Coordinator: Mitch Browning

Defensive Coordinator: Derrick Jackson and Greg Robinson

Returning Leaders for Syracuse:

  • Rushing: Curtis Brinkley, RB, 371 yards
  • Passing: Andrew Robinson, QB, 2,192 yards
  • Receiving: Mike Williams, WR, 837 yards
  • Tackles: Jake Flaherty, LB, 95
  • Sacks: Jake Flaherty, LB, 1.0; Brandon Gilbeaux, DE, 1.0; Arthur Jones, DT, 1.0; Mike Stenclik, LB, 1.0
  • Interceptions: A.J. Brown, S, 2

Other Key Returnees: OT Corey Chavers, CB Nick Chestnut, G Ryan Durand, CB Mike Holmes, DT Arthur Jones, C Jim McKenzie

Key Losses: S Joe Fields, LB Jameel McClain, WR Taj Smith

After three straight losing seasons, Coach Greg Robinson likely has one last chance to turn things around at Syracuse. The Orange went 2-10 last season with their lone wins coming against Louisville and Buffalo. The schedule was pretty rough, but that is of little importance to the fans of a once proud program. A winning record is not necessarily a necessity for Coach Robinson to keep his job, but the team better at least start showing some progress.


More 2008 Big East football previews:

Cincinnati preview | Connecticut preview | Louisville preview | Pitt preview

Rutgers preview | Syracuse preview | USF preview | WVU preview


Syracuse's Strengths:

The offense has some decent weapons, but they just need to develop some consistency and blossom into the players they could be. Quarterback Andrew Robinson did not exactly set the Big East on fire his first year as a starter, throwing for 2,192 yards, 13 touchdowns and seven interceptions. At times he showed what he is capable of and hopefully, for the Orange faithful, consistency will come with experience. He has a solid target in Mike Williams, a 6-2 wide receiver and youngsters like incoming freshman Marcus Sales could make the receivers a very quality group. The running game is more than capable as long as Curtis Brinkley and Delonte Carter can actually stay healthy.

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Syracuse's Weaknesses:

Unfortunately for the skill players on offense, the o-line is a mess. Injuries at running back and inexperience at quarterback certainly played a part in the Orange having one of the worst offenses in the nation last season, but the line deserves their fair share of the blame. Robinson was sacked an amazing 4.5 times per game, ranking 118 th of 119 teams. That also is the reason why Syracuse rushed for under 63 yards per game. For better or worse, three linemen return, but they will need some help from younger players like Tucker Baumbach and Ryan Bartholomew if the line is going to make drastic improvements.


The Bottom Line for the Orange:

As bad as the offensive numbers were last year, the defense was not much better. Coach Robinson is a defensive minded leader and has even taken over co-defensive coordinator duties. The biggest problem was getting to the quarterback. The team only recorded nine sacks on the entire season. Two years ago end Jameel McClain had 9.5 by himself. The Orange might not have enough confidence in their secondary to blitz a lot, but standing back and letting teams pick you apart has not proven to be very effective either.


2007 Syracuse Orange Team Stats:

Rushing Offense: 62.75 (118th in nation, 8th in conference)

Passing Offense: 229.17 (55, 4)

Total Offense: 291.92 (114, 8)

Scoring Offense: 16.42 (116, 8)

Rushing Defense: 207.83 (108, 8)

Pass Defense: 260.92 (102, 8)

Total Defense: 468.75 (111, 8)

Scoring Defense: 34.83 (104, 8)

Turnover Margin: -.50 (96, 8)

Sacks: .75 (118, 8)

Sacks Allowed: 4.50 (118, 8)



By Joel Welser
CollegeSports-fans.com Senior Guest Writer

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