Throwback to the throwback

Syracuse used the throwback play on Saturday to lead them to a last second win over Boston College. That play has a special place in Orange history.

SYRACUSE, N.Y. -- The tight end throwback is one of the most iconic plays in Syracuse football history. It was used on numerous occasions over the years. Tight ends like Roland Williams, Kaseem Sinceno, Chris Gedney and many others caught the pass in critical times for the Orange.

The play has a brilliant design. Have all of the action go to one side of the field, but the tight end lulls the defense to sleep by starting to block. He then leaks out to the opposite side of the field and the quarterback throws all the back to where the tight end now stands.

The most famous example was in 1998, when Donovan McNabb hit Stephen Brominski to beat Virginia Tech on the last play of the game.

On Saturday, the throw back was featured prominently in a back and forth contest between the Orange and the Boston College Eagles. At the end of the first half, the Eagles used the play perfectly to score a touchdown that gave them momentum heading into the locker room.

But Syracuse would get the last laugh, using a throwback to win the game on a 8-yard touchdown pass. Syracuse's version wasn't the traditional throwback play. This was a throwback screen, whereas the traditional throwback is to a tight end who is already up the field.

The traditional throwback was run by Boston College, where the Eagles had all of the action going to the right side of the formation. Tight end C.J. Parsons leaked out to the left side of the field and waited wide open in the end zone as the Chase Rettig pass fell into his arms. A beautiful design by Steve Addazio, who was an assistant at Syracuse during many of the throwback plays in their history.

The Orange throwback was different. Josh Parris started by blocking the Boston College defensive end. After starting the block, he throws the defender off, acting like he had just missed the block. He then turned back towards Hunt at the 10-yard line.

"Coach had been calling the whole drive, sprint protection," tight end Josh Parris said. "So when I was backside blocking, the d-end would bull rush every time. So we wanted to use his strength against him. We called the delay for me. He bull rushed me, I threw him off. It was a great throw by Terrel and great blocking from Rob Trudo and Lasker. They made the blocks down the field and I got into the end zone."

Hunt delivered a strike and Parris made the easy catch. They key to this play was the downfield blocking. Michael Lasker and Rob Trudo release after initiating a block. There is one Boston College defender downfield who could disrupt Parris' path to the end zone.

Defensive back C.J. Jones was there, but Lasker got a hit on him and Trudo finished him as Parris ran into the end zone. A brilliant play call with better execution.

When Syracuse fans think back into the history of great moments, and the throwback play is brought up, there will now be two plays that get discussed. Each had significance for different reasons, but each brought a well played game to a fantastic crescendo.


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