The Syracuse Orange (5-4, 1-2 Big East) could not pull out the win in East Hartford, as they fell to the University of Connecticut Huskies (4-5, 1-2 Big East), 28-21. “We knew what we had to do and we had a good game plan, but just too many turnovers," Nick Provo said, courtesy of Connecticut Athletics.
Speaking of those turnovers, there were eight in this contest. The Huskies threw two interceptions, while coughing up three fumbles. Syracuse threw two interceptions and also fumbled the ball away once.
The five Syracuse takeaways are the highest amount since the five snatched against West Virginia in the 2005 season opener.
Ryan Nassib had an interesting afternoon. On one hand, he had 24 completions for 275 yards and two touchdowns. On the other hand, he also threw two interceptions.
Antwon Bailey had one of his worst games of the year. The tailback finished with just 50 yards on 16 carries, while also adding a fumble.
Alec Lemon, by contrast, had one of the best games of his Syracuse career. The junior receiver finished with nine catches for 157 yards and a touchdown. His 157 yards receiving are a single-season high for the team.
Provo had another solid game, as he finished with seven catches for 53 yards and a touchdown. He’s also captured the single-season receptions by a tight end mark previously held by Chris Gedney. The record was originally 34 receptions, but Provo already has 39 receptions this season.
Phillip Thomas is your leader in tackles this week, with 10. In second place is Shamarko Thomas, who finished with seven.Phillip Thomas also added two interceptions to his totals this season against the Huskies, giving him six on the year. That number leads the Big East. It also marks his second game this season with two interceptions.
Chandler Jones was a force on the defensive line yet again. This time, he finished with six tackles, a tackle for a loss, a sack and two forced fumbles.
It was a rough day at the office for the special teams unit. Ross Krautman missed his only field goal attempt and had a kickoff go out of bounds. Plus, Jonathan Fisher only averaged 33.2 yards per punt return, despite having a long of 52 yards.
On the other hand, Connecticut’s Nick Williams had a great day on special teams. He averaged 41 yards per kick return, including a near-touchdown on a 61-yard return.
What a day for Lyle McCombs. The freshman running back is the first 100-yard rusher against the Orange since Andre Williams from Boston College. He finished with 152 yards on 24 carries, including a 63-yard scamper.
Each of Connecticut’s quarterbacks brought something to the table on Saturday, though they both had their issues. Johnny McEntee threw for 113 yards and a touchdown, though he did toss two interceptions. Scott McCummings finished with 59 yards on the ground and two touchdowns, but did not throw a single pass.
Isiah Moore had a big day against the Orange. He led all Huskies receivers with four catches for 72 yards. The 72 yards are his second highest total on the year, as he finished with eight catches for 143 yards against Iowa State.
Yawin Smallwood had a big day for the Huskies. He finished with 12 tackles, half a tackle for a loss, half a sack, and a pass break up.
Here’s a statistic that’s sure to make Syracuse fans cringe. The team led in first downs, 22-18, total offensive yardage 365-311, time of possession, 31:05-28:55 and third down conversion percentage 50-38.
Great work by the Connecticut ground game on Saturday. The Huskies outgained the Orange 198-90 on the day.
Third down conversions were not either team’s strong suit in this one. The team’s combined to go 10 for 22, for a percentage of less than 50 percent.
This week sees Syracuse take on the Bulls from the University of South Florida (4-4, 0-4, Big East) Friday in the Carrier Dome at 8 p.m. The Bulls are coming off a close loss to Rutgers on the road, as they fell 20-17 in overtime. The Bulls are led by junior quarterback B.J. Daniels, who’s thrown for 2027 yards and 12 touchdowns, while running for 440 yards and four touchdowns. The Bulls started 4-0, but haven't won since conference play started. The game will be broadcast on ESPN 2.
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