When Rob Trudo ran out of the Carrier Dome tunnel on Saturday, he was excited to see the near-full bleachers surrounding him. Trudo wants to see that same atmosphere for every home game.
"It was amazing," Trudo said. "That was a packed Dome. To see 50,000 fans like that, it was great. I wish it was like that every week."
The game did not go as planned for the Orange, falling 49-14. While the team was upset with their performance, there is no loss of confidence going forward.
"It was a frustrating loss, don't get me wrong," Trudo said. "But Clemson's a good ball club. They're a good team. They've beaten a lot of good teams. I'm not trying to make excuses but they're a good ball club. I know my mentality isn't going to change. We're ready to get back out there with our nose to the grindstone."
One area they had success was running the ball right at the Clemson defense. Trudo says their experience in the season opener helped them game plan for the Tigers.
"We've seen that kind of front before," Trudo said. "They play the same type of principles as Penn State. It was just us opening up holes a lot more. I can't really explain why. It's just hard work and film study. We just tried to get after it up front."
Trudo is transitioning from right guard, where he played all of last season, to left guard. While there was an adjustment at first, Trudo believes he is starting to come into his own at his new spot along the offensive line.
"I've been practicing it since spring and we're five games in now," Trudo said. "So I'm pretty much adapted to it. I don't think there's too much of a learning curve anymore. It gets better each game."
Last season, it took several games for the ground game to get going. One main reason was the solidification of the offensive line. Trudo sees a parallel with this year's squad.
"Yeah it's definitely coming around," Trudo said. "We're communicating a lot better and that's the big thing from the beginning of the year. If you see our play, we're getting better and better each game. I'm looking forward to the rest of the season because I know what we're capable of."
While Syracuse is coming off of a loss where they didn't play well, Trudo says getting right back onto the field is the best medicine.
"It's good because you dwell on a lot of things on a bye week after a loss," Trudo said. "You're watching a lot of film studying a lot of things. You take a look at your tendencies and see where you're weak. Those are good things but now we can get right back out there. I think it's a good thing to keep playing. I like playing every week."
North Carolina State has a reputation as having a defensive front that is strong against the run. While Trudo knows the Orange are facing a tough opponent, he believes they are up for the challenge.
"As far as upfront, we just have to be on the same page," Trudo said. "We've got the scheme down and the game plan ready. We just have to take advantage of our strengths. Individually, we just have to stay low and use our hands. If we do that, we'll be fine once we make contact."