Syracuse at Wake Forest Up-Downs

The best and the worst from Syracuse's 28-9 loss at Wake Forest.


  • The Syracuse defense stepped up. They kept the Orange in the game, forced a pair of turnovers, multiple three-and-outs and six Wake Forest punts. 
  • Dontae Strickland found some running room with 74 yards on just 13 carries. He scored his first touchdown of the season as well. 
  • Steve Ishmael led Syracuse in receiving and made a couple of very impressive catches. His role in the offense continues to grow. 
  • Zaire Franklin and Parris Bennett continue to make plays defensively. The two combined for 22 tackles, a sack, three tackles for loss and a forced fumble. 
  • True freshman Joshua Black was extremely disruptive, frequently getting into the Wake Forest backfield. 
  • The interception in the third quarter was a thing of beauty. Corey Winfield read a swing pass perfectly, broke it up causing the ball to pop into the air, and Jake Pickard was there to catch it.


  • Multiple times on Saturday, Syracuse played soft coverage and gave Wake six to eight yards nearly anytime they wanted. It helped keep drives alive and directly led to one score. 
  • The Orange offensive line struggled to protect quarterback Eric Dungey, who was sacked six times. 
  • Speaking of Dungey, he had easily his worst game of the season. He was inaccurate, held the ball too long at times and missed open receivers on multiple occasions. His interception at the end of the first half took momentum away from Syracuse going into the locker room. It was a poorly thrown ball, well under-thrown, as he tried to hit Ishmael in the end zone. 
  • The game plan was confusing. It's understandable why Syracuse went to a predominantly ground attack in the first half with the rain and the wind causing problems. But as the rain dissipated, it is surprising the Orange did not open things up. 
  • Amba Etta-Tawo and Ervin Philips seemed missing from this game. The weather and game plan played a part in this, but they are two of Syracuse's biggest playmakers. They were nearly invisible for large stretches. 
  • Brisly Estime did not have a great day fielding punts. He fair caught one on the four and let a few bounce that hurt their field position on multiple occasions. 
  • Too many missed opportunities. The safety that should have been a touchdown in the first quarter, not scoring at the end of the first half, interception in the third that SU followed up with a three-and-out, forced punts by the defense, false starts on the last meaningful drive in the fourth quarter and many others.
  • The officials took far too long on replays that appeared to be pretty clear-cut. It delayed the game significantly. 
  • The announcers were quite awful. They routinely called Etta-Tawo Etta-Tawu. They also called Corey Winfield, Whitfield at one point. This in addition to acting as if every Wake Forest play was a run-pass option. 

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