Syracuse Football: Here’s how ‘Cuse dominated for second week in a row

Syracuse football (Mandatory Credit: Rich Barnes-USA TODAY Sports)
Syracuse football (Mandatory Credit: Rich Barnes-USA TODAY Sports) /

For the second straight week, Syracuse football easily handled its non-conference opponent. In the 2023 season opener last weekend on the Hill, the Orange set a program record with 677 total yards on offense in absolutely throttling fellow Central New York team Colgate, 65-0.

Then, in week two this Saturday afternoon from the JMA Wireless Dome, the ‘Cuse gave up a long touchdown early on but then turned on the jets against Western Michigan, ultimately handing the Broncos a 48-7 setback.

Of course, the big – and unfortunate – headline in the Orange’s win over Mid-American Conference member Western Michigan is that star junior receiver Oronde Gadsden II suffered an apparent ankle injury on the team’s first drive after hauling in a 10-yard reception.

Gadsden would not return, and understandably, ‘Cuse fans are anxious about his status moving forward, although multiple other SU receivers stepped up in his absence.

Beyond sending positive vibes and love to Gadsden, I saw a lot of positives from Syracuse football (2-O) as it dispatched the Broncos (1-1). By the way, the Orange will next face Big Ten Conference squad Purdue on Saturday, Sept. 16, in an NBC prime-time affair that is scheduled to begin at 7:30 pm.

Let’s review how Syracuse football was able to roll in week two over Western Michigan.

•With the ‘Cuse up 45-7 at halftime, head coach Dino Babers didn’t have starting senior quarterback Garrett Shrader play in the second half. Shrader finished his day by completing 19-of-30 attempts for 286 passing yards and one score through the air. He also had 31 rushing yards and a touchdown on the ground.

•Redshirt sophomore QB Carlos Del Rio-Wilson played a lot in the second half, going 5-of-9 for 57 passing yards.

•Sophomore running back LeQuint Allen Jr. had three rushing touchdowns.

•Redshirt freshman wide receiver Donovan Brown scored an 86-yard touchdown. Shrader did a nice job scrambling to avoid a sack and fired off a short pass to Brown, who then ran for a ton of yards after the catch and into the end zone. Donovan sure is fast.

•Redshirt sophomore wide receiver Umari Hatcher had 83 yards and redshirt junior wide receiver Isaiah Jones had 86 yards through the air.

•Redshirt junior running back Juwaun Price put in a solid showing, with 16 carries for 68 yards.

•After setting a program record for total yards on offense last weekend, Syracuse football followed up that up with 496 yards of total offense against Western Michigan.

•On the defensive side, the Orange gave up a 75-yard rushing touchdown to redshirt freshman running back Jalen Buckley on the Broncos’ first drive, but Western Michigan didn’t score any points after that series. The ‘Cuse defense held this foe to 318 total yards.

•Speaking of defense, at the end of the first half, senior defensive back Jason Simmons Jr. made an interception and then proceeded to run it back 84 yards for a pick-six.

•Junior linebacker Marlowe Wax Jr. had seven total tackles, including six solo tackles. Redshirt junior defensive back Myles Farmer had six total tackles, five solo tackles and 0.5 tackles for a loss. Redshirt sophomore linebacker Derek McDonald, redshirt junior defensive lineman Kevon Darton and redshirt sophomore linebacker Stefon Thompson all registered sacks.

•With this blowout triumph, Syracuse football moves to 3-0 in its all-time series with the Broncos. There is not much to nitpick here, although the Orange did commit nine penalties for 72 yards after committing seven penalties for 60 yards versus Colgate.

Next. Syracuse Orange: Conference realignment is ‘madness,’ per Jim Boeheim. dark