FB : Last time they played: Syracuse 34, Toledo 7

first_img Published on September 22, 2011 at 12:00 pm Comments Walter Reyes had a wide smile on his face when he struck the Heisman pose after Syracuse’s win over Central Florida. And a week later, when the Orangemen played Toledo, Reyes further bolstered his case for the Heisman Trophy.The SU running back followed up a 241-yard, four-touchdown UCF game with 162 yards rushing and two touchdowns against the Rockets.Reyes gave credit to his offensive line for opening up gaping holes to run through following the game.‘The (offensive line) makes holes about this big,’ Reyes said in an article published by The Daily Orange on Sept. 29, 2003.  ‘At first, I’m expecting to get hit and then it’s like, ‘Oh, here we go.”With the help of his offensive line, Reyes led Syracuse to a 34-7 throttling of Toledo. Reyes couldn’t be contained, busting out for two touchdown runs of 61 yards and 43 yards in length. The Orangemen combined its fierce running attack that went for 303 yards on 47 carries with a stingy pass defense to easily beat the Rockets.AdvertisementThis is placeholder textAfter the win over Toledo, Reyes led the nation in rushing with 170.3 yards per game and scoring with 15.5 points per game. He finished the year with 1,347 yards rushing, 975 receiving and 20 touchdowns rushing on the season.The Orangemen improved to 3-1 after stifling the Rockets. The Syracuse defense was prepared for Toledo’s short passing scheme. The Rockets were only able to gain 57 yards on 13 screen plays.Syracuse defensive coordinator Chris Rippon recognized Bruce Gradkowski’s tendency to throw the short pass. Gradkowski threw the ball 50 times, but the Orangemen held the Toledo quarterback to just 5.1 yards per pass.‘Their passing game is really more like a running game,’ Rippon said to The Daily Orange after the game. ‘It’s a lot of short passes, a lot of screen passes.’The Orangemen controlled the clock, running 39 plays before halftime. Reyes’ ability to break free for big plays even astounded his teammates. The nearly 36,000 fans in the Carrier Dome took notice, too, giving him a standing ovation.‘He just bursts through that hole, and it opens like the Red Sea,’ tight end Lenny Cusumano said to The Daily Orange after the game. ‘Walter gets up in there, the hole opens up and he takes it to the house. It’s just unbelievable the way he hits that hole.’Toledo only mustered one touchdown in the third quarter, and by that time the Orangemen were already out in front 27-0.‘I can’t say that we anticipated that they would only score seven points,’ SU head coach Paul Pasqualoni said to The Daily Orange after the game. ‘But one of the objectives on defense was to bend, slow it down and try not to break.’Reyes was able to outrun the whole Rockets’ defense on his two touchdowns. Despite overextending his quad on one play, the Orangemen continued to feed Reyes the ball rather than turn to backup Damien Rhodes. The Rockets were unable to find a remedy for the Orangemen running attack.‘We tried to run blitz on those short-yardage plays and make a big play,’ Toledo head coach Tom Amstutz said to The Daily Orange after the game. ‘He made some moves, found a hole and just took off.’— Compiled by Andrew Tredinnick, asst. copy editor, [email protected]center_img Facebook Twitter Google+last_img read more

Trojans prepare for dangerous Devils

first_imgFollow Aubrey on Twitter @aubreykragen Following three consecutive home games, USC hits the road this weekend, traveling to Tempe, Ariz. to face off against Arizona State. The Sun Devils dropped out of the Top 25 rankings this week after a 42-28 loss to Stanford, but pulled off the upset against Wisconsin the week before.Tough going · USC junior wide receiver Marqise Lee and the rest of the Trojan offense have been unimpressive to start the season. Lee has 23 catches for 293 yards and one touchdown so far in 2013, well behind last year’s pace. – Ralf Cheung | Daily TrojanDeadly DevilsThe Sun Devils’ offense features a number of potent offensive weapons. Quarterback Taylor Kelly is currently ranked sixth in the nation in passing yards, averaging 339.7 yards per game, while completing 59.9 percent of his attempts. Last week, the Trojans’ defense effectively shut down Utah State’s quarterback Chuckie Keeton, but Kelly has a more impressive group of receivers to rely on.Wide receiver Jaelen Strong, standing tall at 6-foot-4, is coming off a career-high 168-yard receiving performance in the loss to Stanford, and is averaging 110 yards per game.“This will be a matchup issue for us,” USC head coach Lane Kiffin said Monday in his weekly YouTube video. “We’re gonna have to play really well with him, be very aggressive with him at the line of scrimmage and take him out of his game.”Senior running back Marion Grice has also been effective in receiving and rushing so far this season. Through three games, he leads the nation in scoring, with 16 points per game on eight touchdowns (six rushing, two receiving).“[Grice is] really tough to bring down for the first guy,” Kiffin said. “So we’re gonna have to tackle really well.”Arizona State’s dynamic offense is averaging 469.3 total yards per game, which will certainly put USC’s No. 4-ranked defense to the test.Sights on SuttonOn the defensive side of the ball, one name stands out for Arizona State: Will Sutton. The senior defensive tackle, weighing in at 305 lbs., is the reigning       Pac-12 Pat Tillman Defensive Player of the Year after helping the Sun Devils lead the country in tackles for loss per game in 2012.This season, Sutton earned a spot on multiple preseason award watch lists, including the Chuck Bednarik Award, given to the nation’s best defensive player, and the Walter Camp Award, given to the most outstanding college player of the year.Surprisingly enough, he has had a somewhat quiet season so far, with just nine tackles and no sacks on the season. Still, Kiffin is preparing his team for Sutton’s dominant play.“[Sutton] just has taken over games at times,” Kiffin said. “On the road, at home, no matter where it is.”Redshirt junior defensive end Carl Bradford, who was also named to the Bednarik Award watch list after an impressive 2012 season, has started slowly as well, allowing senior linebacker Chris Young to lead the team with 19 tackles on the season.On the road againAfter the season opener at Hawai’i, the Trojans played three consecutive games at home, but the crowd’s boos didn’t create much of a home-team advantage — Kiffin joked after the loss to Washington State that the fans’ hostility in the Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum prepared the players for the atmosphere on the road.The Trojans won’t be taking this weekend’s trip to Tempe lightly, since the last time they played there, the Sun Devils handed USC one of only two losses of the 2011 season by a score of 43-22.Kiffin emphasized the importance of preparing the players, especially the underclassmen, for the first big away game of the year.“We’re always concerned about young players going on the road into a place like this and making sure they’re really composed and they play well,” Kiffin said. “We’ve learned over the years about young players making mistakes in their first big road games, so we’ll help those guys through the week and get our veterans to play really well around them.”last_img read more