Syracuse Head Football Coach Greg Robinson got a chance this Monday to look
at the game tape from the Orange's 15-7 loss at the hands of West Virginia, and
it wasn't pretty.
"I was disappointed and frustrated," Robinson said. "But, I really believe as a coach you have to have a 24 hour memory…now it's a matter of getting back to work."
Robinson was animate that the team's stagnant offense was not as bad as it played. He said, as he did in his post game conference Sunday, that Syracuse's mistakes were execution related and easily fixable.
"This could change like that," Robinson said as he snapped his fingers. "I really think the running game flashed."
Robinson was most likely referring to a brief stint in the second quarter where tailback Damien Rhodes had two straight runs, the second of which resulted in a five-yard touchdown. Robinson put much of the blame for the lack of an offensive rhythm on himself.
"If I could do it again, I think I would have put the team in more game like situations where every aspect of the game was included, because there were several breakdowns of communication."
When asked how helpful a preseason game would have been Robinson responded:
"I'd like all five of them, but unfortunately that's not how college works, you have to hit the ground running."
The communication problems Robinson referred to may have been the cause for unusually high number of penalties; Syracuse had 11 flags for negative 71 yards in the loss.
"We're going to be a team that plays smart," Robinson said. "If you look at my teams in the past, I've always had a low rate of penalties."
He said the most disappointing penalties from the game were the personal fouls.
"That's a loss of poise."
The coach said he has now put the loss behind him and learned from it. He's looking forward to next week's game with Buffalo, but more than that he's looking forward to Syracuse's next game against itself.
"It's not about Buffalo, it's about us really focusing on us and how we can improve."
Side note: Syracuse Athletic Director Daryl Gross issued this statement to
the Syracuse fans who came out to support the team:
Thank you, Syracuse fans, for an awesome Labor Day weekend crowd in the Carrier Dome as the Orange hosted West Virginia. We really appreciate the wonderful turnout and support for our team. We will improve and show our appreciation by how we will play.
I encourage all of our fans to stay supportive and come watch the team play Buffalo on Saturday (September 10, 3:30 p.m.). We will need our fan support to be the "twelfth man" in our improvement.
One thing I have noticed since I have lived in this community is that people respond when called upon. Well, we are calling on all of our fans to get behind the football program and continue to fill the Dome.
There is much to be encouraged about. For instance, West Virginia didn't score an offensive touchdown!
We will build on the positives and improve on our weaknesses. Head coach Greg Robinson has experience building championship teams and he will do it for the Orange as well.
Thanks again for showing your support this weekend!
Keep the faith.
Director of Athletics