Orange trounced by Georgia Tech in Orlando

Syracuse had no answer for Reggie Ball. For that matter, it didn't have an answer for most of Georgia Tech.

Ball ran for a score and threw two more as the Yellow Jackets trounced the Orange 51-14 in the Champs Sports Bowl, Tuesday.

Ball was magnificent all night, finishing 12-of-19 for 207 yards through the air with 38 yards on the ground. He was intercepted only once.

"I don't believe anything is done until it's done," Ball said. "There is no turning point, you've got to keep pushing. I just never gave up."

Of course, it wasn't just Ball.

Tailback P. J. Daniels notched two touchdowns on 119 yards rushing. Georgia Tech's defense was solid as well, intercepting an early pass from Perry Patterson for a touchdown on the second play from scrimmage, to say nothing of the special teams, which blocked a Brendan Carney punt in the first quarter. Georgia Tech would turn that into a touchdown.

"These guys played real hard and our coaching staff did a great job," Yellow Jackets coach Chan Gailey said. "I'm really proud of this coaching staff."

After the Yellow Jackets went up 7-0 when Chris Reis intercepted Patterson and returned it 20 yards for the score, Syracuse got back in the game with a Patterson scamper from 21 yards out. But Collin Barber pushed the extra point wide right. It was a sign of things to come.

Ball would throw scores of 10 and 80 yards to put the game out of reach. The Yellow Jackets scored another two times before halftime, giving them a 35-6 lead.

Syracuse (6-6) has not lost this badly in a bowl game since the 1953 Orange Bowl when it was downed by Alabama, 61-6.

The loss cast more uncertainty into the future of coach Paul Pasqualoni. Syracuse has gone 6-6, 6-6, and 4-8 in the past three years. This year's bowl appearance was its first since 2001.

Although chancellor Nancy Cantor said Pasqualoni would stay for another season, the school also hired Southern California product Daryl Gross to be the new athletics director. Pasqualoni's biggest supporter, former AD Jake Crouthamel stepped down in November.

Gross dismissed rumors that he would fire Pasqualoni and hire a USC assistant coach in his first press conference, but did say that he would evaluate the football situation in Jaunary.

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