FIRST HALF RECAP: Syracuse leads UConn, 17-14
This one did not get off to the best of starts for the Huskies, as Syracuse jumped out to a 14-0 lead. The first touchdown came as a 4-play drive ended with a 57-yard touchdown from Eric Dungey to Amba Etta-Tawo. The two hooked up once again for the Orange’s second score as Etta-Tawo beat Jamar Summers for another long gain.
Later on, the defense started making stops while the offense—which got off to its typical anemic start—started moving the ball. The Huskies chose to go for it on 4th & 10 from the Syracuse 34 but failed to end a 60-yard drive without any points.
Luckily another quick stop by the defense gave the Huskies the ball back and they mounted a 53-yard touchdown drive capped off by a 3-yard Ron Johnson run. With the score now at 14-7, Syracuse took the ball downfield but missed a 49-yard field goal attempt.
On the ensuing drive, UConn benefitted from two great catches by Noel Thomas on third downs allowed the Huskies to put together another touchdown drive and tie the game. Syracuse put a field goal drive together to take a 17-14 lead at the break.
The UConn Huskies have a chance to grab an important second win against an ACC opponent today with the Syracuse Orange visiting Pratt & Whitney Stadium at Rentschler Field for a revival of an old Big East matchup.
Because of the assumptions about conference affiliation propagated by the creation of “power five” status, Syracuse fans are eager to believe that they’re on a different level than UConn after their upgrade to the ACC. They were especially quick to do so because they had the misfortune of watching UConn surpass their basketball program and then also see its football program move up to FBS, join the Big East, and beat Syracuse six times in a short span.
Bob Diaco and the Huskies are truly blessed to prove one more time that P5 status doesn’t matter once you get on the field. This year college football keeps proving that even the very large divide between FBS and FCS is not as significant as we’d like to believe.
It should be an interesting one today, as we know Syracuse likes to run the up-tempo style that has been consuming the football world. New Orange head coach Dino Babers brings an offensive style which has been very successful at Bowling Green and Eastern Illinois before that. Luckily they are early in the process of transforming the offense, and will be meeting a very good defense today.
On the other side of the ball, UConn must take advantage of an already weak defense that is also going to be missing two starters in the secondary. So far the offensive line has yet to prove that it has improved from last year. This will be as good an opportunity as there comes to get on track.
This is the Open Thread, feel free to share your in-game thoughts here and check back at halftime for a recap of the first 30 minutes!