Syracuse offense manages just 3 points against stout FSU defense

first_imgTALLAHASSEE, Fla. — As quickly as Florida State was scoring, Syracuse was giving it back the ball.Three-and-out. Six plays and a punt. Three-and-out. Three-and-out. The Orange held the ball for longer than the Seminoles in the first quarter, but three of its four drives lasted just three plays. None moved closer than 9 yards from midfield.“They’re a real good team,” SU quarterback Terrel Hunt said. “Fast, strong, physical. That’s all I can say.”Hunt completed just 10-of-18 passes for 75 yards and extended his touchdown-less streak to six games. Jerome Smith carried the ball five times for just 4 yards and took just one carry in the second half. Devante McFarlane as a runner was one of Syracuse’s few bright spots, but his measly 23 receiving yards led the Orange (5-5, 3-3 Atlantic Coast). As good as FSU’s (10-0, 8-0) offense was hyped up to be, the defense was just as impressive in the No. 2 Seminoles’ 59-3 win over SU on Saturday in front of 74,491 at Doak Campbell Stadium.SU played three different quarterbacks, had seven players carry the ball and completed passes to nine different targets, but no combination worked. Syracuse’s only field goal barely snuck through the right upright.AdvertisementThis is placeholder text“If you can’t score the ball,” SU defensive tackle Jay Bromley said, “you can’t play with this team.”The Orange fell more than 50 points short of what it needed against a defense loaded with future NFL talent.Defensive tackle and likely first-round pick Timmy Jernigan plugged up holes in the middle of the field. Christian Jones and the rest of the Seminoles’ linebackers chased running backs on the outside. Smith was rendered inept. Prince-Tyson Gulley was relegated to the sideline with an ankle injury. McFarlane and George Morris II only started to break through when the game was out of reach.“They’re a very good team that rushes and they can get sideline to sideline very quickly,” Morris said.On SU’s second drive, Gulley busted a run to the outside. Normally, it’s a stretch-type play in which he has a chance to break for a big gain.But the Seminoles gobbled him up. Defensive back Terrence Brooks was the first one there, but three FSU players swarmed around Gulley to drag him down for no gain. The running back reinjured his ankle and had to be helped off the field. He did not return.When cornerback Julian Whigham suffered a potentially serious abdominal injury and wide receiver Jarrod West got knocked out with an upper-body injury, Syracuse was forced to resort to playing safely. Smith didn’t play for much of the second half, partially to give Morris and McFarlane more carries but also to preserve the Orange’s star back.“We’re trying to get to the end of the year,” said running backs coach DeAndre Smith, “get all our guys healthy.”Florida State successfully negated SU’s strength by snuffing out the run and jumping ahead early. Syracuse would have to throw the ball to keep up with the Seminoles.It couldn’t.Hunt has yet to throw a touchdown pass since his spectacular performance against Tulane on Sept. 21. Drew Allen entered in the second half and threw a pick. Even Charley Loeb got to throw a pass late during the fourth quarter.The Orange played without H-back Brisly Estime for the first time since he cracked the starting lineup against Wake Forest. Ashton Broyld had to slide back to H-back. Alvin Cornelius made his first career start against the No. 2 team in the nation.“We definitely could’ve used him,” Hunt said of Estime, “(but) as much as we could, Ashton’s a great player, too. I wish he gets a set part where he gets comfortable with it, but he did the best he can.”The moving parts kept in constant motion. SU just couldn’t get into a rhythm.Less than four minutes in, Florida State had run six plays and Syracuse had run three. Florida State had a touchdown and Syracuse had a punt. The defense couldn’t stop Jameis Winston and the Seminoles, and the offense couldn’t keep up, either.“They’re a great team. We lost to a better team, basically,” Hunt said. “It would be more of a bruised ego if we lost to a team that we was better than, but we lost to a better team.” Comments Published on November 16, 2013 at 11:25 pm Contact David: [email protected] | @DBWilson2 Facebook Twitter Google+last_img

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