Syracuse, Clemson, Sean Tucker discussed on Bet The Board
How good this team is right now and how much they should have been upgraded from where you had them to start to season. Yeah, I think it is, again, the number one factor here, here we are in the middle of October. And I'm not sure really how good Syracuse is. On paper, they beat NC state, be Purdue, a couple of solid teams, maybe borderline top 25, even in a Vegas power rating. But then you dive deeper into those two games, Purdue was really banged up, specifically running back and wide receiver in that game. Still Purdue should have won the game. They all gained Syracuse by nearly 200 yards. And if not for a couple of dumb penalties after their last touchdown, Sergei probably doesn't score there in the final seconds. And then last week, yeah, I mean, if somebody's not paying attention to who was in or out of a lineup, I mean, Syracuse controlling it NC state by that kind of score seems very impressive, but the fact that NC state was down to a backup quarterback and Devin Leary in my opinion as a guide is probably worth at least 5 or 6 points to a point spread. And then I throw this one in there too because if you're looking at full season statistical averages, I mean the Wagner game and a very bad FCS team. We're talking bottom 5 FCS team. Syracuse out gained them by nearly 600 yards. You do the math when you played 6 games. Your yards per game average goes up a hundred yards per game. So I have my doubts on just how good Syracuse is. And you know what, pay attention to the postgame last week. I think dino babers might have tipped himself off a little bit. He mentioned bulge ability last week. Big win for him. But he's like, it was important to get the ball eligibility. Why has he mentioned that? I think it's two fronts. Number one, I think it was very important for him to get the ball eligibility this year if he was going to still be the Syracuse coach in 2023. But also, this upcoming stretch for Syracuse, night and day difference in terms of strength of schedule. They will be an underdog and possibly four, maybe even 5 of their last 6 games. We will not only find out just how good Syracuse is on Saturday, but also a daunting stretch of opponents here, even though it's only the ACC coming up for them. Brad, you mentioned that Wagner game, and if you look at what Sean Tucker has done this season, this isn't disparage anything. He's accomplished on the football field. His average is basically jumped from a shade more than 80 yards per game against FPS opponents to averaging more than a hundred yards per contest, and he did that in a shortened game nonetheless. Against the Wagner Seahawks and when you look at this Syracuse orange offense, Garrett Schrader has been outstanding. I think he deserves full marks for the improvement he's made. Robert and I is coming in the offensive coordinator and having the same impact on Schrader that we're seeing the negative impact that Brennan Armstrong has gone through is starting quarterback of Virginia. Rendez Gadsden has paced the receivers, but even last week in the win against NC state Gadsden 8 catches 141 yards and two touchdowns, the rest of the receiving room 8 for 69. And pain, I bring all that up to ask this question. When we look at the Clemson defense, we thought this could be one of the best front 7s in all of college coming into the year. Now, in my opinion, they haven't lived up to those expectations, but there's still time to get right. And you don't win national championships in the middle of October. Do you see a path to success for Syracuse to stay in this inside this number with their offense against the Clemson defense? That's just now starting to get a little bit healthier. I think that's the great question. What Clemson defense are we getting? The one that we thought was the best in the country or the one from last week. And I know people will look at the 34 14 score at one point in the FSU game and think that that was an absolute blowout in the reality was there was about a three minute stretch where Clemson outscored Florida state by 17 points. But if you look Florida state had drives of 75, 93, 44, 76, 60 and 94 yards. Clemson's defense was 24 tackles against FSU and you look at floor states offensive line. It was beaten and battered. They created 3.7 line yards per rush, more than 2.6 yards before first contact against this Clemson defense. You look at all of those things that translated to a positive 0.55 EPA per rush. Effectively, any time F as you read in the ball it translated into more than half a point per run attempt more than 56% of FSU's runs gained 5 plus yards. This was a game where Clemson defensively was near their healthiest all season. That was the talk. You have Nick Eason, Clemson's defensive tackle coach. If you listen to his presser on Monday, he was fired up because of how poorly Clemson performed in the trenches. And the quote from the presser was stopping the run comes down to how bad you want it more than your opponent. It starts inside your heart. I'm not The Wizard of Oz or Jesus. Some things you need to be born with. We have to get back to basics, techniques, and fundamentals. Star ratings don't mean shit. I think they're going to be a little bit more fired up this week. I don't know if we're going to get the dominant Clemson defensive front. We thought they could be at the beginning of the season, but they're healthy. They've been called out upfront Syracuse, their role lines played very well. They lack some depth, but four starters return from a really improved unit last year. The queues are top 25 in line yards and opportunity rate. Sean Tucker to your point has been good. Third in the country in yards per team play. And that's measures basically efficiency and volume. So he's been a stud there. Garrett Schrader, we've talked about him being upgraded a little bit. I think clearly he's been good for the Syracuse quarterback position. No doubt. Still don't know if he's good enough as a pastor to consistently attack Clemson where it's been vulnerable this season. Clemson right now outside the top 40 and EPA per pass allowed. I think you have to hit some passes to open things up for Sean Tucker on the ground. Now, if the cues can get their ground game going, not as much pressure on trader. But ultimately, if Schrader can hit some passes and soften some things up for Tucker, I think that goes a long way. Clemson is also played some mobile quarterbacks with Jeff Sims and Jordan Travis last week. So I think that helps here when thinking about Schrader's mobility. Listen, the 13 point spread is really interesting perceptually. You have two unbeaten. I think the casual fan is thinking, how could that be? Our core number on the game's actually 14 and a half. The line is high for a reason. And I think all of us on this podcast were pretty high on Syracuse relative to expectation. The team was projected to win three and a half games. But this is a different animal on the road and Death Valley. And I think as Brad astutely pointed out, you have to make the manual adjustment for Devin Leary being out. And across the board, Syracuse strength of schedule really poor 87th. Just one top 40 win and it was at home against an undermanned Purdue team. That required the game winning drive. Wagner, much to our chagrin because we laid 53 in that game and thanks for bringing that up. Canceled.