• History of Excellence

    History of Excellence

    Today’s Syracuse University students pursuing careers in sports media are part of a tradition that goes back more than 75 years. The great sportscaster Marty Glickman ’39 is recognized as the “godfather” of a long line of SU sports media professionals that includes Bob Costas ’74, Hank Greenwald ’57, Dave Pasch ’94, Dick Stockton ’64, Andy Musser ’59, Marv Albert ’63, Beth Mowins G’90 Len Berman ’68, G’70, Sean McDonough ’84, Mike Tirico ’88, Ian Eagle ’90, Dave O’Brien ’86 and many more–not only in sports broadcasting but also in sports writing, editing, production and management at the national and local levels.

  • Professional Sports Coverage

    Professional Sports Coverage

    Students in the Sports Communications Emphasis have covered the Syracuse Chiefs (AAA baseball) and have written columns focused on Major League Baseball, the National Football League and Mixed Martial Arts. Students also work with the Syracuse Crunch (American Hockey League) and the ACC Network.

  • SU Sports Coverage

    SU Sports Coverage

    Newhouse School graduate students in the Sports Communications Emphasis serve as credentialed reporters covering Syracuse University teams. Their stories appear on this website in text, photo and video format, and they also contribute to campus media outlets covering sports. Students have covered SU football, cross country, basketball, crew and lacrosse, and there’s more to come.

  • Leading Sports Media Personalities

    Leading Sports Media Personalities

    When you look to the top of the sports broadcasting profession you see Syracuse alumni everywhere you turn: from NBC’s Bob Costas ’74 and Mike Tirico ’88 to Marv Albert ’63, the Voice of the NBA, plus ESPN’s Sean McDonough ’84, Dave Pasch ’94, Dave O’Brien ’86 and Beth Mowins G’90 and CBS’ Ian Eagle ’90. Former SU football and basketball stars such as Daryl Johnston ’89, Don McPherson ’88, Donovan McNabb ’98 and Leo Rautins ’83 have moved into the broadcast booth. SU alums are play-by-play voices for the Boston Red Sox (Dave O’Brien ’86 and Joe Castiglione G’70), San Francisco Giants (Dave Flemming G’99), Minnesota Twins (Cory Provus ’00) and Houston Astros (Robert Ford ’01). Personalities such as Bill Roth ’87 (Virginia Tech), Tony Caridi ’84 (West Virginia) and SU’s own Voice of the Orange Matt Park ’89 call games for Division One college programs.

  • Mentoring Tomorrow’s Pros

    Mentoring Tomorrow’s Pros

    SU alumni in sports media have always been willing to mentor and advise students. Whether returning to campus to speak and meet with the next generation of sports media professionals, Skyping with them, critiquing demo reels and clips or helping students make internship and job contacts, Orange alumni are always there. The Newhouse Sports Media Center helps make those connections between students and alumni.

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Mary Garber

"I think a lot of us don't realize how sensitive teenagers are, that their feelings are very easily hurt and that was why whenever I wrote about kids to be as positive as I could possibly be because they're so easily hurt."

-- Mary Garber

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Student Reporting

Changing the Game

Changing the Game

December 10, 2017

Story by: Erin Fish Photos by: Kristin O’Grady   He grabbed her face, shoved his hands down her pants and man-handled her. A scar of his thumbnail on her stomach remains. It is the constant reminder of the worst night of her life. That scar is visible, but there is another one that is more […]

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Story by: Erin Fish

Photos by: Kristin O’Grady

 

He grabbed her face, shoved his hands down her pants and man-handled her.

A scar of his thumbnail on her stomach remains. It is the constant reminder of the worst night of her life.

That scar is visible, but there is another one that is more complicated, one that has emotionally scarred her. A scar that scar lingers, ever painful, and she is constantly reminded of it every day of her life.

She lives an incredible, humble life of service and compassion. That life is what defines Keri Potts now. Not a thumbnail left on her stomach by a drunken wretch of a man.

You see, when that predatory monster decided one night that his sexual wants were more important than the safety and dignity of Keri Potts, well, he picked on the wrong woman. She has since made it her mission to help others. She has, and she will continue to do so. This incredibly smart, tenacious and passionate woman is completely changing the game.

Landing the Job

Keri Potts, a former academic All-American standout volleyball player at Syracuse University, was on her way home from an interview with the NCAA for a writing and publications editing job. The woman sitting next to her on the flight asked why she was wearing a suit, so Keri explained  that she had just come from a very important job interview and the woman smiled, intrigued by Keri’s sincerity. For the remainder of the flight, they discussed Title IX, the need for more women in sports, how the world belonged to them and the importance of strong women taking action and making decisions within traditional structures. The woman’s name was Barb Schroeder, who Keri later found out was the President of the Division II Management Council for the NCAA. When Schroeder got off the plane she made a phone call: “You have to hire her. She’s the kind of woman we need.”

Keri worked for the NCAA for three years and seven months. The longer she worked there and the more championship events she experienced, she realized how much she loved the intersection of sports, communications, and media relations. After three years of valuable experience, Keri began to explore other opportunities and she reached out to her Syracuse connections.

When Keri attended Syracuse, she worked for the athletics department. Being a student athlete and working there, the faculty was a second family to her. She had worked for Coach Jim Boeheim one summer, so when she called him and asked him if he knew of anyone in the industry that she could bounce some ideas off of, Coach was happy to help. He told her about a Syracuse alumni, John Wildhack, who was working at ESPN. Coach Boeheim said Wildhack would be great for her to talk to and that he would give him a call.

Boeheim called Wildhack and told him ESPN should hire Keri. Although Wildhack was in production, he told Boeheim that he was more than willing to connect with Keri and help her in any way he could. The two built a strong mentor-mentee relationship through their networking connection. Wildhack grew to believe that Keri was smart, personable and passionate. When a job opened up in the communications department at ESPN, all he could do was crack open a door; after that it was up to her.

Sue Edson who, at the time, was the Director of Athletic Communications at Syracuse, called ESPN as soon as she found out Keri had applied for the job. She only made calls when she felt comfortable and after working with Keri, there weren’t many, if any, positions that she wouldn’t recommend Keri for. She believed that her skillset, personality and passion was exactly what every company should be looking for. Sue called her friend, Josh Krulewitz, who worked in public relations for ESPN to recommend Keri.

Whatever it was that ultimately convinced the hiring committee that Keri Potts was the right person for the job, ESPN and the rest of the world would soon be better off because of it.

Dream Date Turned Nightmare

Keri Potts was on vacation in Italy with her friend, Lynn. On her last night, she decided to go out for drinks with a charming Italian artist named Marco, who she had met earlier that day. It had been a couple of years since her last relationship and Keri had been talking with Lynn about how hard it was to meet nice guys. She figured she would give Marco a chance.

When they met for drinks, Marco drank rum. The two looked through a book of his paintings and they talked about art and Italy. Marco talked about how a lot of artists are into sex and drugs but all he needed was art. Keri laughed and said that was good because he wasn’t getting any sex from her. He laughed and said that he would rather talk with her and then he kissed her. He suggested they go back to his apartment to see the view from his patio. They were on the same page; she was comfortable.

Six floors up; it was a beautiful view. They talked and walked to a bar down the street. He drank more rum as she sipped her wine. He talked louder and louder; he bought a bottle to go. “Lighten up and enjoy your last night,” Keri thought as she and Marco walked back to his apartment.

She heard glass break in the other room. When Marco came around the corner and thrust the bottle of rum toward her, Keri knew it was time to leave. He handed her a glass of rum and Keri walked inside from the patio, set the glass down and told Marco she was going to head back to her hotel. He then tried to hand her marijuana and she refused.

He grabbed her face.

Marco grasped the back of her neck with a strong grip, kissed her and drew blood biting her lip as she tried to push him away.

He shoved his hands down her pants.

Marco forced his right hand into Keri’s jeans, trying to undo the button.

He man handled her.

Marco put both of his hands on Keri, pulling her body into him while shoving his hands into her underwear; she felt his fingernails scrape her.

When Marco said in nearly perfect English, “You’re not going anywhere”, Keri knew that she was in danger. The hair stood up on her neck and her stomach dropped. She tried to collect herself before she turned to face him. The charming man who she had met earlier in the day had become absolutely predatory.

Keri was smart. She had been out on the patio earlier and knew that was her way out. After a physical fight for her life with Marco, she finally pushed him hard enough that he fell backward and she was able to escape his grasp. She jumped over the wall to clear the patio and her sweater got stuck on the railing, which gave Marco enough time to catch up to her. He reached over, grabbed her neck and tried to pull her back up while she kicked and pulled in the opposite direction. Her sweater finally ripped and she fell to the balcony below.

Keri put her 5’10” athletic build and intelligent mind to use and hurdled herself rooftop-to-rooftop down five stories to escape this monster. She eventually wound up on a balcony with nowhere else to go, so she knocked on the back door. The resident let her cross through his apartment and told her how to get back to her hotel.

She pressed her ear against the door to hear if he was on the other side but she could only hear her heart beating out of her chest. What if he had been watching her climb down the whole time?

She took a deep breath, burst through the door and ran for her life. She sprinted all the way back to her hotel.

What Now?

Keri was scheduled for a 9:00am flight but after deliberating over the personal, professional, legal and financial ramifications, she decided to go to the police station. She was afraid, but she knew in order to fight her fear she had to get as much information as possible.

Keri’s knowledge of the Italian legal system came to rival that of lawyers. Utilizing her PR background, she strategically broadcast her story, hoping it would bring people forward to help her. She wanted women to be aware that when an assault occurs overseas, prosecution and justice is possible. This was extremely important to her.

She focused on places that women and travelers would look to. She got together with an old teammate, Erin Zammett Ruddy, who worked for Marie Claire and the two wrote a four-page article about her story. The Travel Channel also did a piece on her and Discovery ID did an entire episode in their series, Dates From Hell. Keri also created her own blog to include any more information that she felt had been left out.

Marie Claire Article Blog: https://afightbackwoman.com/

Her first time ever publicly speaking out about her assault was at the Clinton School in February of 2011. Afterward, eight women and one man lined up to speak with Keri. With tears in their eyes, they greeted her with hugs and shared their stories of their experience with assault and rape. In that moment, Keri had never felt more inadequate in her life. She knew then, that she needed to do more to help others.

Keri went on to receive training and her certification in rape and crisis counseling. More and more places reached out, asking her to speak and each time, she would refine her message. Over the course of those years she would take the questions that people had and shape them to fit her presentations. Keri, being the selfless human being that she is, never wanted her speech to be about her; she wanted it to help every other person in the room.

Through the Discovery ID episode, Keri was connected with a man named Roger Canaff who is a former special victim’s prosecutor out of the Bronx and a JAG attorney in the military dealing with sexual assault. Canaff had been used in the episode as an expert on prosecution of sexual assault. He was part of an organization called, Ending Violence Against Women International. When introduced to him, Keri was overwhelmed with gratitude that this man was able to speak to her. She explained to him that she wanted to talk to people who have been assaulted overseas and he connected her with people that he knew, which is how Keri ended up on a list serve called Counter Quo.

Watch Your Language

She didn’t it know yet, but what she was about to hear would shape the forthcoming of her career. Keri was in Boston attending a conference at Northeastern University with Counter Quo. There was a woman at the conference by the name of Claudia Bayliff. At the time, Bayliff was working for Legal Momentum on the prosecutorial team of Kobe Bryant’s trial. Keri listened to Bayliff talk that day about the use of language. She explained how the word “accuser” shapes everyone’s thoughts about that particular victim with a negative connotation and how engrained in the vernacular it was, especially through its heavy coverage by the media. Working for ESPN, Keri left knowing the heavy coverage was partially her fault.

She went back to the news room and asked everyone to take a look at the word accuser and how negative it could make the victim seem. Keri was instantly shot down. She was told that the word existed beforehand and there was nothing they could do to change it. Another moment of feeling inadequate for Keri Potts where she realized, in order to affect real change, she needed knowledge too, not just passion. The next time someone tried to shoot her down, she would have done the work and she would come back swinging harder.

For years, Keri became particularly keen to language. Every time she would read a story she would pay attention and write letters and emails to the editors asking them to change their wording and explaining why the use of the language was important to the story. People would write Keri emails from all over the world asking for help or telling their stories and she became used to helping people through their pain. She was doing more and more work as a victim’s advocate so she started to have a more thorough understanding of the crime. For five years Keri learned the scope and scale. She did the research and went to the conferences and seminars. She was finally in a place where she knew how to articulate this, she knew how to make arguments for anyone coming at her, and she knew how to be persuasive.

Preaching to the Choir

“Well, she shouldn’t have put herself in that situation.”

This is a classic phrase that is used in discussions of sexual violence that blames the victim and forgives the perpetrator.  When Keri Potts heard that phrase used by an on-air personality at ESPN after Ray Rice physically assaulted his fiancée, she knew that something needed to be done about their use of language.

Continuously Keri would reach out, but she never could get the right person in the extremely large company. Finally, Keri approached Stephanie Druley, SVP of Production. She explained the inappropriate and hurtful phrasing used by ESPN and convinced Druley to let her speak to the company about their responsibility in choosing their words wisely.

August 2nd, 2017.

It was the first time she ever did the presentation with a media organization. She had 30 minutes to present to 300 of her coworkers who were a part of the college networks.

Her nerves and vulnerability led to an authentic presentation that left many people in tears. Keri used every moment of the 30 minutes to grasp the attention of her colleagues and help them to fully understand the importance of the language of violence. She received a standing ovation, the response overwhelmingly positive. The emails flooded her inbox, her coworkers who hadn’t realized they were part of the problem, wanting to open their minds and educate themselves. Keri was extremely grateful for the powerful woman who trusted her, lifted her up, and ultimately gave her the opportunity she had only ever dreamed of.

After the presentation to the college team, Keri found out that in September, her presentation would become required training to all on-air talent and production at ESPN.

For two days Keri couldn’t eat. Trying to take in food, but her stomach would instantly reject it. Nerves had completely taken over. These were people that Keri respected. They may or may not have even known who she was, but she was going to stand up in front of them and in a way, show them all they had been doing wrong. She was afraid she would be rejected and mocked like she had been years ago but then she remembered, this time she had the work to back it up.

The first presentation she gave was at 10am. Keri left feeling like she could’ve done better. The next presentation wasn’t until 4pm, so Keri sat for four hours listening to calming music and practicing her speech. Everything she had was left out on that stage during that 4 o’clock presentation. She doesn’t know that she will ever do that presentation better.

From Then, To Now

ESPN has now created a guide that will no longer use the word, “accuser.” The news division has decided to abandon the word because it has a negative meaning that dehumanizes the victim. Instead, they will use “woman” or “man” as a replacement. The company will be the first company to completely remove the word from its vernacular.

Keri believes there will always be sexual predators in the news, but if we can change the way we talk about the victim and the perpetrator, we can become more aware of how deliberate these predators are.

Nine years since the nightmare in Italy and Keri reflects on the positives in her life today. She is now on the board for an organization called Pathways to Safety International, a resource for overseas victims of sexual assault, a dream opportunity. Dealing with the criticism of victims is infuriating and taxing but she truly feels invigorated by her work and feels it’s something she’ll continue to do for the rest of her life.

I am a student at the S.I. Newhouse School at Syracuse University. On October 23rd, Keri Potts gave a presentation to the Newhouse Sports Media Center and what I learned that day completely changed my outlook on life. This woman traveled back to her alma mater, not to talk about herself or all of the amazing things she is doing at ESPN, but instead she came to share her personal victim story with about 25 students whom she didn’t know. She presented to us on the use of language and I will forever be aware how important the use of language can be. I showed up thinking I would learn about what it meant to be the senior director of public relations for ESPN.

Instead I learned courage. Keri Potts is extremely brave to stand up and share her story in order to teach a group of students about the importance of sexual assault and violence. It can’t be easy to share a personal victim story, but Keri understands the importance of education on the topic.

Instead I learned honesty. Keri Potts does not hide from her true self. Sexual violence is an uncomfortable topic that Keri is extremely passionate about. She makes everyone around her feel more comfortable when discussing the subject.

Instead I learned strength. Keri Potts has endured great tragedy and has overcome hardship. She stood tall clenching her fists, tears in her eyes, telling a room of engaged students how she faced her fears head on.

I walked away from that presentation having learned what it means to be a powerful human being. Keri Potts is an incredible person that has done so much good for this world already.

Keri Potts has completely changed the game.

 

Colgate Hangs Tough, Orange Prevail

Colgate Hangs Tough, Orange Prevail

December 10, 2017

  Story by: Erin Fish Photos by: Jose Cuevas   SYRACUSE, N.Y.– The Syracuse men’s basketball team outlasted Colgate 72-58 on Saturday afternoon in what very well could have been a blow out at the Carrier Dome. With the win Syracuse improves to 8-1 on the season, while Colgate’s record falls to 3-6 after losing […]

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Story by: Erin Fish

Photos by: Jose Cuevas

 

SYRACUSE, N.Y.– The Syracuse men’s basketball team outlasted Colgate 72-58 on Saturday afternoon in what very well could have been a blow out at the Carrier Dome.

With the win Syracuse improves to 8-1 on the season, while Colgate’s record falls to 3-6 after losing its fourth straight game.

Raiders Battle

Sophomore Tyus Battle got off to hot start scoring 15 points in the first half, making it look as if there was no answer, but Colgate kept digging.

The Raiders had four 3-point shooters that spread the floor and created a significant threat for the Orange. The Raiders finished the day shooting 40 percent from beyond the arc. Coach Jim Boeheim was disappointed with some of the shots that his team allowed Colgate to take, but he gave credit where credit was due.

“Those guys can shoot, they all can shoot,” Boeheim said. “It’s a team that has four perimeter guys that all can shoot.”

Although Battle had a strong first half and the Orange were shooting 57.7 percent from the field, a lights out shooting performance and a strong defensive effort by the Raiders kept them in the game.

Colgate opened the second half with an 11-5 run and cut the score to 43-37. Freshmen Oshae Brissett and Marek Dolezaj hit back-to-back jumpers to put the Orange back up 47-37 with 13:58 left in the half. Colgate Freshman Jack Ferguson brought the Raiders back within seven when he answered with a 3-pointer.

This was just one of the six 3-pointers Ferguson hit in today’s game. He finished the game with 20 points, shooting 50 percent from the 3-point line.

Inside the Arc

Colgate proved to be a great shooting team, but Syracuse dominated the inside game. The Syracuse defense only allowed the Raiders to reach the foul line four times and while at the line the Raiders only went 2-4.

Syracuse shot 52.1 percent overall from the field and 68.2 percent from the free throw line.

Brissett scored a career high 20 points while junior Frank Howard added 18 points and 6 assists in the win.

Dolezaj had 6 rebounds, 5 assists, and 3 steals. Although he only had two points today Coach Boeheim is extremely happy with the minutes that the freshman is putting in for the Orange.

“He’s one of those players that doesn’t really have to score. He makes plays,” Coach Boeheim said. “He makes winning plays. That’s what he does.”

Resting Sidibe

Freshman center Bourama Sidibe dressed for the game against Colgate on Saturday afternoon, but he did not see any playing time. Sidibe had played in every game this season up to this point.

The 6’10 center has been struggling with tendonitis in his knee and he also suffered an ankle injury in the game against Kansas last Saturday. Sidibe attempted to play in the game against UConn at Madison Square Garden on Tuesday, but returned to the bench after only 10 minutes.

Coach Boeheim commented after the game that they are hoping his ankle will be better in 2-3 days.

Old Rivalry

The next game for Syracuse will be on Saturday, December 16th. The Orange will travel down to Washington D.C. to take on their former Big East Conference rival, Georgetown.

Orange Women Hold Off Wildcats, Stay Unbeaten

Orange Women Hold Off Wildcats, Stay Unbeaten

December 1, 2017

Story by Brooke Meenachan Photos by Karthik Venkataraman Syracuse, N.Y. — The ACC-Big Ten Challenge game between the No. 25 Syracuse Orange and Northwestern Wildcats lived up to the hype Thursday night at the Carrier Dome. Syracuse came away with an 81-74 win to improve to 7-0 on the season. Northwestern drops to 5-3. “I’m just […]

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Story by Brooke Meenachan

Photos by Karthik Venkataraman

Syracuse, N.Y. — The ACC-Big Ten Challenge game between the No. 25 Syracuse Orange and Northwestern Wildcats lived up to the hype Thursday night at the Carrier Dome.

Syracuse came away with an 81-74 win to improve to 7-0 on the season. Northwestern drops to 5-3.

“I’m just happy we’re keeping it rolling,” Syracuse head coach Quentin Hillsman said. “That’s the biggest thing for us, is to win games. Our girls are playing tough. They’re really playing good basketball.”

Orange Difference Makers 

Miranda Drummond and Tiana Mangakahia each posted a double-double, combining for 55 points for the Orange women.

Drummond led the offense with a career-high 29 points and tied her career-high with 11 boards.
Mangakahia also set a career-high with 26 points and finished with 12 assists.

“Pushing the ball on them was one of our key points going into that game, so we emphasized that and did that throughout the game,” Mangakahia said. “When I was driving in I could see girls move into the open spots and open gaps, so that helps as well.”

Wildcats’ One-Woman Show

Lindsey Pulliam kept Northwestern in the game. The freshman paced the Wildcats with career-high 29 points. She posted 19 of them in the first half.

“I thought Lindsay played like a senior and not like a freshman,” Northwestern head coach Joe McKeown said. “I was really proud of her, so I think she just raised the bar for us.”

Hillsman agreed. “We didn’t really slow her down. She was amazing. She had an amazing game.”

But Pulliam drew her fourth foul with 9:16 left on the clock and the Wildcats trailing 57-55. She returned with just over six minutes remaining in the game.

Down the Stretch 

It was a back-and-forth battle all game, especially in the final minutes.

The teams were tied 60-60 with just over seven minutes remaining when Syracuse went on an 11-4 run.

A jumper from Abi Scheib put the Wildcats within three with 2:28 remaining.

But multiple turnovers by Northwestern and clutch free throws by Mangakahia down the stretch proved to be the difference.

“The coaches on the sideline were like, ‘they can’t guard you, attack, attack,'” Mangakahia said. “So, that helped me, attacking and they were fouling, so it played out good.”

The Australia native hit 10-of-14 from the free throw line in the final three minutes. She’s tied for third in SU women’s basketball history for free throws made during one game.

“This is a game where we had to remain aggressive,” Hillsman said. “We could have pretty much laid down in the second half, but they went full heart.”

“I thought we did a great job attacking them and then we struggled a little bit,”McKeown added. “Then they did a great job attacking us and beat us to the rim in the fourth quarter. We had a lot of chances. We just didn’t capitalize.”

What’s Next

The Orange hosts Stony Brook (5-0) Sunday at 2 p.m.

The Wildcats return home to welcome Milwaukee (3-2) Sunday at 2 p.m.

Eagles Romp on Orange Senior Day

Eagles Romp on Orange Senior Day

November 26, 2017

Story by Jude Allume  Photos by Peter Benson SYRACUSE, N.Y. — The Syracuse Orange (4-8) lost its fifth straight game in blow out fashion to the Boston College Eagles (7-5) 42-14 at the Carrier Dome to end the season, Saturday afternoon. “When you’re playing the type of team that we’re playing, you have to be able to exchange punches with them,” […]

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Story by Jude Allume 
Photos by Peter Benson

SYRACUSE, N.Y. — The Syracuse Orange (4-8) lost its fifth straight game in blow out fashion to the Boston College Eagles (7-5) 42-14 at the Carrier Dome to end the season, Saturday afternoon.

“When you’re playing the type of team that we’re playing, you have to be able to exchange punches with them,” Orange head coach Dino Babers said. “What you saw was a boxer and a brawler and it’s a physical game. You get hit, you get hit, you got to hit back. It comes a point you get tired of doing it.”

The Start of a Long Day

From their first possession, the Eagles’ offense gave the Orange a taste of what would take place all day. With Boston College backup quarterback Darius Wade filling in for the injured Anthony Brown, the Eagles leaned heavily on their running attack. Running back AJ Dillon capped off the drive with a 22 yard touchdown run for the early 7-0 lead.

With Eric Dungey out for the third straight week, redshirt freshman Rex Culpepper got the start and the Orange responded with a scoring drive of its own. After a kick out of bounds gave Syracuse possession with good field position, the Orange picked up three first downs before the drive was capped off by a 37 yard catch and run by Steve Ishmael to even the score at 7.

That was the closest Syracuse would get for the remainder of the day however, as the Eagles went on to score rushing touchdowns on three of their first four possessions, building up a 21-7 lead halfway through the second quarter.

Have a Day, AJ

The Orange had no answers for the Eagles’ running game. True freshman AJ Dillon led the BC running attack with three touchdowns and 196 yards. The Eagles finished the game with 333 rushing yards and four rushing touchdowns.

Bright Spot for the Orange

Steve Ishmael had the best game of his collegiate career, finishing with 11 receptions for a career high 187 yards and one touchdown. Ishmael broke two school records with his performance, surpassing the single-season receptions record of 94 catches and career receiving yards record of 2,728 yards. On the season Ishmael has 105 catches for 1,347 yards, good for second and third in the NCAA respectively.

Tough Goodbye for the Seniors


The loss was not the preferred way to end the season for the Orange, especially for the seniors who played their final game for Syracuse and for some, possibly the last game of their careers.

“When a football player retires from college, there’s nowhere to go,” Babers said. “Twenty-two guys aren’t playing in the park with pads.”

Instead of letting the loss sting as the final memory of a long season, with five seconds remaining in the game, Babers called timeout. One by one, he called off the seniors on defense including Zaire Franklin and Parris Bennett and embraced them as they walked off the field to the cheers of those left in the crowd.

“I was very surprised,” Bennett said. “I definitely appreciated it though. Definitely very emotional. You don’t really realize it’s your last game at the Dome until it’s over with.”

What’s Next


Boston College completed its regular season at 7-5 and awaits an invitation to a bowl game.

Syracuse finishes the season at 4-8 for the third straight year and fails to qualify for a bowl game for the fourth straight year.

Homecoming and History, Bellator 186

Homecoming and History, Bellator 186

November 21, 2017

Story and Photos by Jose Cuevas  State College, Pa. — Bellator 186 was the first Bellator fight card held on a major Division 1 college campus. The fights emanated from Penn State University, a college campus well known for its football and top notch wrestling program. Former Penn State wrestlers Phil “Mr. Wonderful” Davis and […]

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Story and Photos by Jose Cuevas

 State College, Pa. — Bellator 186 was the first Bellator fight card held on a major Division 1 college campus.

The fights emanated from Penn State University, a college campus well known for its football and top notch wrestling program. Former Penn State wrestlers Phil “Mr. Wonderful” Davis and Ed “Easy” Ruth made their return to their alma mater and the crowd was electric in support of them.

There were 14 fights total on the card, nine on the preliminary card and five on the main televised card. The following are the results of each fight in the order they took place the Bryce Jordan Center at Penn State.

 

PRELIMINARY BOUTS

Joshua Fremd defeated Ryan Parker via Submission (Rear-Naked Choke), in the 2nd round, time: 1:25
Andrew Salas defeated Ethan Goss via Split Decision
Frank Buenafuente defeated Francis Healy via Unanimous Decision
Tywan Claxton defeated Jonny Bonilla-Bowman via KO (Flying Knee), in the 1st round, time: 1:29
Logan Storley defeated Matt Secor via Unanimous Decision
Dominic Mazzotta defeated Matthew Lozano via TKO (Doctor Stoppage)
Round 1, time: 2:37
Michael Trizano defeated Mike Otwell via Submission (Anaconda Choke)
Round 2, time: 2:07
Mike Wilkins defeated Brett Martinez via Submission (Rear-Naked Choke)
Round 2, time: 1:09
Scott Clymer defeated Michael Benjamin Putnam via TKO (unanswered Punches) Round 1, time: 3:07
MAIN CARD
Saad Awad defeated Zach Freeman via TKO (unanswered Punches) Round 1, time 1:07
Ed Ruth defeated Chris Dempsey via KO (punch) Round 2, time 0:27
Phil Davis defeated Leo Leite via Unanimous Decision
Ilima-Lei Macfarlane defeated Emily Ducote via Submission (Triangle Armbar), Round 5, time: 3:42
Ryan Bader defeated Linton Vassel via TKO (unanswered Punches) Round 2, time 3:58

 

NOTABLE FIGHTS

 

Tywan Claxton versus Jonny Bonilla-Bowman

Not all hard-hitting action occurs on the main card and this fight proves it. Tywan Claxton made his pro debut and he did not disappoint. In the 1st round he delivered a vicious flying knee that knocked out Jonny Bonilla-Bowman on contact. It was arguably the highlight of the night.

 

Dominic Mazzotta versus Matt Lozano

Dominic Mazzotta was coming off a loss to A.J. McKee at Bellator 178 and had something to prove. Mazzotta is also a native of New Kensington, Pa. which must have added to his motivation.

Mazzotta easily controlled the first round taking down Lozano and executing brutal ground and pound. Mazzotta landed an elbow early on that littered the canvas with Lozano’s blood.

Mazzotta continued to rack on the damage until the referee stopped the action to have a doctor examine the cut.

The fight was called off in the first round by the doctor and Mazzotta was declared the winner.

 

Mike Wilkins versus Brett Martinez

Two local boys faced off in the penultimate prelim fight. Mike Wilkins brought his supporters with him who cheered him on voraciously in the Bryce Jordan Center. Wilkins showed his dominance early by putting on a striking clinic in the first round.

The first round was all Wilkins as he dictated the pace and used his striking to maintain the distance. Round one ended with Martinez’s right eye swollen and with a mouse developing under it.

Heading into the second it was expected that Wilkins would use his striking to continue mounting damage, but this time it was his grappling as he was able to take down Martinez and gain rear control. He ultimately cinched in a rear naked choke and won via submission

Wilkins wasn’t the only one celebrating as his supporters were ecstatic as well.

 

Saad Awad versus Zach Freeman

Saad Awad is a veteran MMA fighter who has fought on Bellator cards multiple times. He came out with something to prove against Zach Freeman.

Awad made short work of Freeman with a vicious right hook that landed flush.

In the post fight interview Awad said he felt overlooked.  He hopes to get a title shot, and after that performance you can be assured that Bellator President Scott Coker is considering it.

 

Chris Dempsey versus Ed Ruth

Undefeated Ed Ruth returned to his Alma Mater with a thunderous ovation.

The three time All American wrestler was expected to use his wrestling skills to dominate Chris Dempsey and Ruth did not disappoint as he maintained control in the first round using his wrestling skills.

Dempsey could not overcome Ruth’s superb wrestling skills and tried to keep the fight in the center of the cage. However, it turned out to be a mistake as Ruth is also a magnificent striker.

Ruth was declared the victor in the second round via K.O. Penn State was electric as he celebrated his victory.

 

Leo Leite versus Phil Davis

Penn State wrestling coach and legend Cael Sanderson was in attendance at Bellator 186. He was asked by the broadcast team to join them for the next fight, Davis vs. Leite.

Mr. Wonderful like Ruth was a very accomplished wrestler during his time at Penn State and many believed he would use his wrestling to beat Leite. It wasn’t his wrestling that Leite would have to worry about but Davis’ kicks.

In round one Davis and Leite were feeling each other out not committing too much to attacking. Leite is a former Jui-Jitsu World Champion which gave Davis problems in terms of using his wrestling to bring Leite to the mat.

In round 2 the action perked up as Davis became more aggressive throwing more punches. However he accidentally poked Leite in the eye.

Once the referee called time in, Davis went back to applying pressure and forcing Leite on his backfoot.

Heading into the third round it seemed Davis was winning on the cards due to his consistent pressure. Davis continued throwing punches and kicks hoping to sway the judges. The crowd began chanting “We are Penn State!” and “Davis!” to motivate Davis.

Davis won a unanimous decision as his consistent pressure and role as the aggressor swayed the judges in his favor. He said that he was glad to be back at Penn State and wants a title fight next and that he wouldn’t mind fighting both Ryan Bader and Linton Vassell.

 

Ducote versus Macfarlane

History would be made as the winner of Ducote versus Macfarlane would be the inaugural Bellator Women’s Flyweight champion.

From Round one Macfarlane showed why she is a feared striker with effective punches. Not only was her striking efficient, but she was able to defend well against Ducote’s strikes.

Macfarlane was also very comfortable on the ground as she continually tried to lock in a submission hold, whether it be a triangle choke, armbar, kimura, or rear-naked choke.

In round two both fighters stayed on their feet and exchanged strikes. Ducote threw solid leg kicks hoping to weaken Macfarlane’s base. Macfarlane continued to strike effectively and caused Ducote to begin bleeding from her nose.

In the third round Macfarlane began attacking Ducote’s body. Her attack included a savage knee from a clinch. Ducote tried to take Macfarlane down in hopes of getting in control but it was reversed.

In round four both combatants took each-other to the limit as they exchanged blows in the middle of the cage. Both were showing signs of fatigue, but they did not back off.

In round five Ducote worked hard to turn the tide of the fight. She was the aggressor hoping to land something solid on Macfarlane. Macfarlane went for a throw however Ducote reversed it and gained control.

Macfarlane remained poised to find an opening and lock in a submission. She finally found her opening as she was able to secure Ducote’s arm and lock in a makeshoft armbar for the win.

Ducote verbally submitted and Macfarlane was crowned the inaugural Bellator Women’s Flyweight champion.

 

Bader versus Vassell

In the main even Ryan Bader and Linton Vassell faced off for Bader’s Bellator Light Heavyweight championship. Vassell was not an easy opponent for Bader as he was very strong and had excellent range.

As was the theme for most of the night, wrestlers dominated, and Bader used his wrestling skills to gain control of the fight.

Heading into the second round Bader resumed wrestling and was able to corner Vassell at the edge of the cage.

Bader began to throw heavy strikes after gaining wrist control and exposing Vassell’s guard. The referee stopped the fight shortly thereafter as Vassell was taking heavy punches to his face by Bader.

The referee stopped the fight in the second round via TKO and Ryan Bader retained his Light Heavyweight championship.

Battle Leads Syracuse Over Texas Southern

Battle Leads Syracuse Over Texas Southern

November 21, 2017

Story by Brooke Meenachan Photos by Peter Benson Syracuse, N.Y. — Tyus Battle proved to be the difference maker in Syracuse’s 80-67 win over Texas Southern in front of 16,644 fans Saturday night at the Carrier Dome.  The 6-foot-6 sophomore guard finished with 21 points on 9-of-16 shooting in just 26 minutes on the court. […]

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Story by Brooke Meenachan

Photos by Peter Benson

Syracuse, N.Y. — Tyus Battle proved to be the difference maker in Syracuse’s 80-67 win over Texas Southern in front of 16,644 fans Saturday night at the Carrier Dome.

 The 6-foot-6 sophomore guard finished with 21 points on 9-of-16 shooting in just 26 minutes on the court. Syracuse head coach Jim Boeheim took Battle out after picking up his second personal foul with 9:50 left in the first half. Syracuse was trailing 20-18 at the time.

“He could have went back in, but I think Frank [Howard] and Geno [Thorpe] played well together during that stretch,” Coach Boeheim said.

Thorpe Steps Up

Thorpe helped pick up the slack for Syracuse with Battle on the bench. The fifth year transfer from South Florida led the Orange with 13 markers on 5-of-6 shooting, including 3-of-4 from the perimeter, heading into half with a 38-30 lead over the Tigers.

“When we we’re moving the first half, Geno made some really good plays, almost on his own,” Coach Boeheim said. “He kept us in there the first half. That was good.”

That wasn’t the case in the second half as Thorpe didn’t score a single point. The Pittsburgh native played only seven minutes and missed all three shots he took.

“I’m just trying to play my own game, you know what I mean?” Thorpe said. “Find my own rhythm. I’m not really too worried about how people think I’m playing. I just want to contribute to the team as much as possible.”

 

Battle’s Back

Battle returned to start the second half and made his presence known by burying a 3-pointer on Syracuse’s first possession.

The Orange went on a 15-0 run with the help of the sophomore guard. He scored 14 points in the first eight minutes.

Battle faked out his defender in the corner, spun back towards the baseline and put down a one-handed dunk that lifted the Syracuse crowd from their seats with 12:26 on the clock.

Battle is averaging 22.3 points per game this season.

 

Syracuse Slow Start

Like its last three starts, the Orange struggled to get the ball rolling.

Texas Southern went on a 5-0 run to start the first half. The Orange got on the board with a pair of foul shots from Oshae Brissett.

In the postgame conference, Boeheim said it was like his team had never seen a zone before.

The Tigers played a 2-3 zone, which Syracuse struggled against, going 0-7 from the field to start the game.

“It’s early in the season.” Battle said. “People are going to get more comfortable with the system with our team, with our coaching staff, guys are going to step up every night.”

Their first bucket didn’t come until four minutes in when Tyus Battle knocked down a 3-pointer.

Syracuse had five players finish in double figures. Battle led the offense with 21 points and Thorpe added 13. Howard finished with 12 markers and dished out eight assists. Bourama Sidibe and Marek Dolezaj scored 11 and 10 points respectively.

The Tigers were led by Donte Clark, who finished with 20 points.

Orange Crushed by Cardinals

Orange Crushed by Cardinals

November 21, 2017

Story by Karthik Venkataraman Photos by Rafael Freitas LOUISVILLE, Ky.–Weather delayed Saturday’s game, but not even Mother Nature was pouring it on as much as the Louisville Cardinals did on Syracuse in the Orange’s 56-10 loss at Papa John’s Cardinal Stadium in Louisville, Kentucky. At a Glance The team suffered its worst loss by point […]

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Story by Karthik Venkataraman

Photos by Rafael Freitas

LOUISVILLE, Ky.–Weather delayed Saturday’s game, but not even Mother Nature was pouring it on as much as the Louisville Cardinals did on Syracuse in the Orange’s 56-10 loss at Papa John’s Cardinal Stadium in Louisville, Kentucky.


At a Glance

The team suffered its worst loss by point margin on the season, ending its chance for an automatic bid for a bowl game.

“I’m not even going to use the ‘B’ word right now,” Syracuse head coach Dino Baber said. “It’s just a situation where we went out there and played a football team that’s in the top part of our conference and we didn’t get an opportunity to compete with them.”

The Cardinals got it done behind a powerfully balanced offensive attack. Louisville outgained Syracuse in total yards 727 to 335.

Louisville Lit up Scoreboard Early and Often

Louisville set the tone just 36 seconds into the Senior Day game with a senior.

On the second play of the opening drive, Cardinals running back Malik Williams bolted into the endzone for a 43-yard rushing touchdown and a 7-0 lead.

The Orange responded with a 51-yard field goal from Cole Murphy later in the quarter, but those were the only points Syracuse mustered in the first half.

Just as quickly as the Cardinals opened up the first quarter, they did it again in the second. On the quarter’s opening play, Quarterback Lamar Jackson stiff armed a defender on his way to a 43-yard rushing touchdown to make it 14-3.

Two minutes of game time later, running back Reggie Bonnafon added to the score with a 33-yard rushing touchdown to make it 21-3 as the crowd chanted his name.

“That was like a dream come true,” Bonnafon said. “It was cool to feel the love from the fans.”

The game was postponed early in the second quarter due to lightning. The 43 minute delay couldn’t halt the Cardinals momentum.

When play resumed, Jackson found wide receiver Jaylen Smith for a 72-yard strike with 5:50 left in the first half.

On the following drive, Syracuse third-string quarterback Rex Culpepper replaced Zack Mahoney, who was starting for injured Eric Dungey. Mahoney was 5 of 15 for 49 yards with two interceptions when he was pulled.

Louisville took a 35-3 lead at halftime. Syracuse was out-gained 450 yards to 148 at the break. All the touchdowns Syracuse’s defense let up in the first half were for more than 30 yards.

 

Louisville Kept Foot on the Gas in Second Half

The Orange started with possession in the second half with a chance to gain momentum,

however, Culpepper threw an interception in the opening drive of the half.

Louisville promptly scored 56 seconds later as Jackson twisted and turned for a 19 yard rushing touchdown making it 42-3.

The Cardinals scored two more touchdowns in the half.

Malik Williams ran through the Orange defense for a 56-yard touchdown in the third quarter. Williams had nine rushes for 181 yards and two touchdowns. It was the most rushing yards by a running back at Louisville since 2010.

Backup Louisville quarterback Jawon Pass threw a touchdown to wide receiver Dez Fitzpatrick to make it 56-3 in the fourth.

The Orange scored an eight yard, Ervin Phillips rushing touchdown with about five minutes left in the game to make it 56-10.

 

Game notes for the Orange

Rex Culpepper finished the game 8-19 for 89 yards with two interceptions.

Syracuse boasts the top active receiving duo in NCAA football with wide receivers Steve Ishmael and Ervin Phillips.  They struggled to find space today, combining for only four catches and 42 yards. It was the duo’s lowest combined total of the season.

The Orange allowed over 50 points for the second straight game, allowing 110 points in total to Wake Forest and Louisville. The defense has let up over 700 yards in both of the last two games. They allowed 734 yards to Wake Forest and 727 to Louisville.

“I think it’s a lot more about who we are playing and what they are doing,” Babers said on the defenses struggles. “Coaches are doing a good job isolating people and putting them in situations where guys are going to have to make plays.”

 

A Career Day for a Heisman Candidate

Lamar Jackson had quite the day for Louisville and set school records along the way. Jackson went 14-26 for 270 yards and two touchdowns. He ran 12 times for 111 yards and two touchdowns.

“Today he made plays that people can’t make other than him,” Syracuse linebacker and team captain Zaire Franklin said.

He broke the school record for most total yards in Louisville Cardinals history. He passed Chris Redman’s total of 12,474 yards.

 

Orange Highlights

As starting running back Dontae Strickland sat out due to injury, his backup Moe Neal rushed for a season high 98 yards.

Steve Ishmael ties former Orange wide receiver Amba Etta-Tawo’s single-season record for receptions at 94 that was set in 2016.

On defense, linebacker Zaire Franklin recorded his 300th career tackle.

 

What’s Next for Syracuse

The Orange plays its final game of the year against Boston College next Saturday in the Carrier Dome. It will be Senior Day for Syracuse.

“We’ve got to treat it like everything else and finish it the right way,” Franklin said. “Come in, watch it, learn from it, get a win on our senior night.”

Syracuse is no longer eligible for an automatic bid for a bowl game.

Syracuse Battles to 68-45 Win Over Hawks

Syracuse Battles to 68-45 Win Over Hawks

November 21, 2017

Story By Julian Whigham Photos by Jude Allume   Syracuse, N.Y. – The Syracuse Orange women’s basketball team (2-0) topped the Maryland Eastern Shore Hawks (1-2) 68-45, winning their second of four straight home games. Sophomore point guard Tiana Mangakahia looked sharp, spreading the ball around for ten assists and redshirt junior forward Miranda Drummond […]

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Story By Julian Whigham

Photos by Jude Allume

 

Syracuse, N.Y. – The Syracuse Orange women’s basketball team (2-0) topped the Maryland Eastern Shore Hawks (1-2) 68-45, winning their second of four straight home games.

Sophomore point guard Tiana Mangakahia looked sharp, spreading the ball around for ten assists and redshirt junior forward Miranda Drummond led the way in scoring, recording 19 points on an efficient five of nine shooting night.

“She (Drummond) did a really good job of getting into some open areas, she’s a good player.” Orange head coach Quinton Hillsman said. “When you have a good player who can play a lot of minutes for you, you have a chance at being successful.”

 

How It Happened

Syracuse got off to a hot start defensively holding MDESW to just 10 points and 35-percent shooting from the floor. The Orange’s defensive effort translated into early offense, converting ten first-quarter turnovers into eight points on the other end. In the second period, Jasmine Nwaje sparked a 10-0 run with a jumper at the 6:11 mark and after an Isis Young layup in the final seconds, Syracuse closed the half with a 37-28 advantage.

In the fourth, the Orange got out on another run, this time a 12-point advantage capped by a Mangakahia lay-up as the guard tallied her final two points, finishing with 16 on the night—recording her first double-double of the season.

Freshman Nikki Oppenheimer drained a 3-point dagger in the closing moments of the fourth, giving the Orange a comfortable 24-point lead.

 

Player of the Game 

Miranda Drummonds 19-point night helped her lead both teams in player efficiency at a rate of 19.0. Drummond started slow, shooting just one for four in the first quarter. Her sluggish shooting night didn’t last long, scoring 13 points in the second quarter.

“Seeing that first one go down definitely helps.” Drummond said.

 

Notes

  • Syracuse out-rebounded Maryland Eastern Shore 51-33 and picked up 12 offensive boards in the game.
  • Three Syracuse players recorded double-figure points, including Drummond (19), Mangakahia (16), and Finklea-Guity (11)
  • Mangakahia finished with ten assists tonight for the second game in a row.
Homer Survives for Section III Class B Football Title

Homer Survives for Section III Class B Football Title

November 21, 2017

Photos and Story by Kent Paisley Syracuse, NY— In a furious comeback bid that Homer couldn’t have written better himself, the Homer Trojans (10-0) hold on for the rubber match victory against the Cazenovia Lakers (9-1) in the Section III Class B Championship, 28-21 in the Carrier Dome.   Trojan First Half Dominance The result was […]

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Photos and Story by Kent Paisley

Syracuse, NY— In a furious comeback bid that Homer couldn’t have written better himself, the Homer Trojans (10-0) hold on for the rubber match victory against the Cazenovia Lakers (9-1) in the Section III Class B Championship, 28-21 in the Carrier Dome.

 

Trojan First Half Dominance

The result was four unanswered touchdowns for Homer, whose lone blemish was a Tucker O’Donnell interception in Cazenovia red zone territory late in the second quarter.

The Trojans opened the scoring floodgates with a 33 yard run up the left side by Krillin Drake with 8:47 left in the first.

The Trojan offense churned out efficient drives, converting the next two trips into the red zone for touchdowns. They held a 21-0 lead when the Laker offense piled on to Cazenovia’s issues.

 

Lakers struggling out of the gate

In their semifinal playoff matchup, the Lakers failed to score in the first half, then pitched a second half shutout for a 14-3 victory over Marcellus.

The team followed that script, getting shut out in the opening half.

Cazenovia fumbled a kickoff return, leading to a Trojan touchdown. The Lakers recorded their opening first down with 7:32 to go in the second quarter.

The team settled down on the offensive end with consecutive first down runs thereafter, and then the ground opened up beneath them.

Laker senior captain Matt Regan threw a 60 yard pick six, with Dante Yacavone evading five tacklers on his way to the end zone.

The Lakers did not give up a score the rest of the way. The third quarter and first half of the fourth looked like the game would remain uneventful.

The defending champion Lakers showed their experience at the end, with its seniors making the game interesting in the final minutes.

 

An Odyssey of a Comeback

Odysseus had to survive a multitude of hurdles on his way home to Ithaca in Homer’s greek epic The Odyssey.

Odysseus evaded Lotus Eaters, a trip to the underworld, the sirens, the Charydbis, stuck on an island for 7 years with Kalypso, amongst other struggles, until he finally returned home.

The Lakers faced a similarly tall task to claim its sixth section III class B championship in eight years.

Ball at its own 46 yard line.

4:40 to go, trailing 28-0.

The handoff went to senior Jake Macheda, who busted up the right sideline for the 54 yard score. The extra point converted.

The lotus eaters were dealt with.

Kicker Ian Fostveit sent an onside kick up the right side, which the Lakers collected.

The escape out of the underworld knocked off the list.

The Lakers dug deep into its playbook, with a five yard touchdown pass to starting senior wide receiver Scott McLaughlin from Regan, to trail 28-14 with 1:43 left in the game.

The Sirens were navigated.

Fostveit sent an onside kick up the middle. In the madness of the dog pile, Cazenovia came up with the ball at the Trojan 42.

They survived the Charydbis.

Back-to-back 20 yard plays to McLaughlin and senior tight end Kevin Stadler put the Lakers at the three yard line. A personal foul penalty would inch them closer.

The Lakers crowd was on its feet as Regan punched his way into the end zone on the QB sneak with 44 seconds on the clock.

The extra point was missed, but it remained a one score game, 28-20.

They entered Kalypso’s island.

Unfortunately for the Lakers, they did not have a lifetime to complete the comeback. Fostveit’s third consecutive onside kick bid went out of bounds.

The Trojans would kneel out the final seconds to claim the championship.

Other Notes

Jake Macheda and Tommy Britt were named MVPs of the game for Cazenovia and Homer, respectively.

 

Tirico Collects Marty Glickman Award in Campus Ceremony

Tirico Collects Marty Glickman Award in Campus Ceremony

November 15, 2017

Story by Zach Staton Photos by Kristin O’Grady Syracuse, N.Y. – When Mike Tirico is behind a microphone calling a Notre Dame football game for NBC or hosting Football Night in America, he usually has a tremendous amount of notes prepared, ready to deliver any information at a moment’s notice. That was not the case Tuesday night […]

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Story by Zach Staton

Photos by Kristin O’Grady

Syracuse, N.Y. – When Mike Tirico is behind a microphone calling a Notre Dame football game for NBC or hosting Football Night in America, he usually has a tremendous amount of notes prepared, ready to deliver any information at a moment’s notice.

That was not the case Tuesday night when he accepted the Marty Glickman Award for Leadership in Sports Media.

“I sat next to Beth (Mowins) and pulled out a notecard and said, ‘Beth, look what I’ve prepared,'” Tirico told the audience in the Joyce Hergenhan Auditorium at Syracuse University’s Newhouse School during his acceptance speech.

“Nothing. That flies in the face of what I’m supposed to do, but I wanted this to be from the heart.”

Honoring Marty Glickman

Tirico, who graduated from Syracuse in 1988, is the fifth person to receive the award, joining Bob Costas, Marv Albert, Beth Mowins, and Sean McDonough. The award is named after Marty Glickman, an Olympian and 1939 alumnus who later became a trailblazer as a sports announcer. He is credited with being the person who started the long line of successful sports media professionals who attended Syracuse.

“It means a lot because of who Marty was and what he represent, and the standard he set.” Tirico said. “I came here because of Bob (Costas) and Marv (Albert). And they came here because of Marty.”

Albert, a Glickman protégé, said his mentor would be proud of Tirico.

“One of the things I admired about Marty was his ability to broadcast a variety of sports in any role,” Albert said in a pre-taped message shown during the ceremony. “I see those same qualities in Mike Tirico.”

Tirico’s Résumé

Tirico’s career has spanned more than 30 years, starting in Syracuse a rerporter and then sports director at WTVH-TV while serving as the play-by-play voice for SU football, basketball, lacrosse, and volleyball.  He then moved on to ESPN, where he spent the next 25 years in various roles, including the voice of Monday Night Football for nine seasons.  He also broadcaste events such as The Open, The Masters, FIFA World Cup, Wimbledon, and tennis’ U.S. Open.

In July 2016, he made the move to NBC Sports Group, where he is now the voice of Notre Dame Football and NBC’s broadcasts of Thursday Night Football and the on-site host forFootball Night in America and Sunday Night Football.  In 2018, he will become the primetime host for the Olympics, a position previously held by Costas, starting with the winter games held in PyeongChang, South Korea.  After such a long stint with ESPN, Tirico said he didn’t know what to expect from the transition to a new company.

“Whenever you’re someplace for a long time, people respect you professionally, but they don’t know you personally,” Tirico said. “These guys and gals have opened up their family to me and made me feel like I’ve been there forever.”

A Friendship Comes Full Circle

McDonough, last year’s recipient, presented the award.  He took over the play-by-play duties for Monday Night Football when Tirico left for NBC.  He kept McDonough informed on his possible move to a new company, hinting that it could lead to a promotion for McDonough.

“He said, ‘I think if I leave and go to NBC, they’re going to give you Monday Night Football,'” McDonough said during his presentation speech. “I said, ‘Well if that’s the case, as your friend, you absolutely must go.'”

Moving seemed to be a theme in the pair’s friendship. Right after graduating in May 1984, McDonough took his first job in Boston.  The staff at WAER, the university-licensed radio station where McDonough worked during his time at Syracuse, decided to help him move to his new apartment.  Part of the moving crew: Mike Tirico, a freshman who started in September 1984.

“I never met the guy,” Tirico recalled. “When you’ve helped somebody move their couch out of their college apartment to go someplace else, then you know it’s a good start to a friendship.”

Reunion for Monday Night Football Announcers

Tuesday night’s ceremony also marked the first time that all three of Tirico, McDonough, and Mowins had been together since Mowins became the first female to announce Monday Night Football.  When she learned the news she would be on the call for the second game of ESPN’s doubleheader, the first people she contacted were in Tirico and McDonough.

“They were together on the golf course with Al Michaels,” Mowins said. “So they told me, ‘Oh there’s no pressure. There’s no big shoes to fill.'”

Their advice to Mowins was simple: “Be yourself.” The fact that three Newhouse graduates were following each other in the booth was something all three took seriously.

“We realize we are ambassadors for the University in some fashion when we’re out there,” McDonough said. “It’s a responsibility we cherish and take very seriously.”

The Tirico-Mowins Connection

Tirico called Mowins the “premier glass-ceiling breaker in this business of all-time.” However, it was an indirect tie that Tirico said will always leave him indebted to Mowins.

“Beth’s scholarship to play basketball at Syracuse was probably taken by my wife,” Tirico said. “If not for Beth going to Lafayette, I never would have met my wife.”

Perhaps the unknown sacrifice came to provide Mowins with good karma later on. Before Mowins went to work for ESPN, she interned at WTVH-TV whileTirico was there. She remembered the experience helped her see how to prepare for broadcasts and how to work with others in the business.

“It was the basis of my knowledge and my jumping off point into the industry,” Mowins said.  “I got a glimpse at how the right way to do things were.”

Battle Leads Orange Men Over Iona

Battle Leads Orange Men Over Iona

November 15, 2017

Story and photos by Peyton Zeigler SYRACUSE, N.Y. — Sophomore Tyus Battle led the Syracuse Orange to victory against the Iona Gaels 71-62 at the Carrier Dome Tuesday night. He finished with a career-high 28 points along with five rebounds and three assists. “We got a lot of work to do,” head coach Jim Boeheim said. […]

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Story and photos by Peyton Zeigler

SYRACUSE, N.Y. — Sophomore Tyus Battle led the Syracuse Orange to victory against the Iona Gaels 71-62 at the Carrier Dome Tuesday night. He finished with a career-high 28 points along with five rebounds and three assists.

“We got a lot of work to do,” head coach Jim Boeheim said. “They’re fighting. I see improvement.”

Coming off a season-opening win against Cornell, Syracuse (2-0) struggled against the matchup defense by Iona (0-2). Boeheim gave credit to Iona, who made the NCAA tournament last year.

“I think they’ve got a really good team,” he said. “They forced us into some turnovers that we can’t make.”

This win could shape the Orange as a tournament team, even though it was not projected as such in the preseason.

Career Night for Battle

Eleven of Battle’s career-high 28 points came in the last eight minutes of the game. His previous high was 23 against Virginia last season. This effort did not go unnoticed by his teammates.

“I feel like he can [get hot] any time he wants,” freshman forward Oshae Brissett said. “That’s someone that we want taking those last shots and giving us easy points on the board, because that’s what he can do.”

Battle said he felt more confident during the game. When Iona started to inch back within a few points, he just wanted to make something happen.

“I live for stuff like this,” Battle said. “Just trying to be aggressive and will the team to a win.”

He also mentioned the offensive rebounds made by Marek Dolezaj late in the game.

“It was just a good team effort all around. I think it was a good win for us.”


Three-point Shootout

The Gaels are known for being a three-point shooting team, and they didn’t stray from their usual game plan tonight. They shot 32 three-pointers and 31.3 percent led by junior guard Ricky McGill. McGill was 5 for 9.  He was the most productive in three-point range and finished with 21 points.

Syracuse shot 33.percent from beyond the arc. Junior Frank Howard, Battle and Brissett each finished with two threes.

What’s Ahead

Syracuse hosts Texas Southern on Saturday, Nov. 18 at the Carrier Dome to begin the Hoophall Miami Invitational. Texas Southern (1-1) is coming off an overtime win at Washington State. The Tigers play Thursday at Ohio State.

Demon Deacons Blow Out Orange in Second Half

Demon Deacons Blow Out Orange in Second Half

November 14, 2017

Syracuse, N.Y. – Coming into Saturday, Syracuse had the best third down defense in the nation, allowing opponents to convert just 22 percent of their third downs. Saturday was a completely different story. Wake Forest amassed 734 yards of total offense and converted 50 percent of its third downs as the Demon Deacons hammered the Orange […]

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Syracuse, N.Y. – Coming into Saturday, Syracuse had the best third down defense in the nation, allowing opponents to convert just 22 percent of their third downs.

Saturday was a completely different story.

Wake Forest amassed 734 yards of total offense and converted 50 percent of its third downs as the Demon Deacons hammered the Orange in front of 38,539 fans in the Carrier Dome, 64-43. Syracuse surrendered 40 second half points, including 24 unanswered to end the game.

“We know that we have to do a lot better,” Syracuse head coach Dino Babers said at the postgame press conference. “Our effort needs to be a lot better than the way we played out there today.”

A New Quarterback for Syracuse

Zack Mahoney made his first start of the season at quarterback in place of Eric Dungey, who injured his foot in last week’s loss at Florida State.  Dungey finished the game against the Seminoles and was listed as questionable on the injury report.  He threw a few warm-up passes prior to the game and was fully dressed in the first half, but the decision to go with Mahoney was made at the last minute.

“I found out that I was starting 14 minutes before kickoff,” Mahoney told reporters after the game. “Preparation-wise nothing really changed for me.”

The graduate student quarterback finished the day with 384 passing yards and three touchdowns.  However, he threw two interceptions in crucial moments.  With nine minutes left in the game and Syracuse driving in Wake Forest territory, down 47-43, Mahoney was picked by Demon Deacons linebacker Jaboree Williams, who returned it 52 yards to the Syracuse 20. Wake scored five plays later to make it 54-43.

His second interception, again with Syracuse in opponent territory and down 57-43, with four minutes to go virtually ended the Orange’s hopes for a comeback.

“I thought Zack battled with his skill sets out there to the best of his abilities,” Babers said.

Whether Dungey will return next game is still up in the air.

“We want to make sure that he can defend himself,” Babers said. “We all want him to play, but he is somebody else’s son.”

Wolford Puts on a Show

Syracuse had a great deal of trouble trying to contain Wake Forest quarterback John Wolford.  The senior put on a balanced attack that left defenders guessing what the would do on run-pass options.  He finished the game with a video game-like stat line: 25-38, 363 yards passing, and 3 TDs, all of which were thrown to senior tight end Cam Serigne, who had a career day with seven receptions for 119 yards. Wolford also carried the ball 19 times, collecting 136 yards and scoring three more times.

“He was very decisive in doing things that he was doing,” Syracuse senior linebacker Zaire Franklin said. “Whether it was pulling the ball out and getting yards for himself or making good throws down the field, I just think he stepped his game up.”

His final touchdown run, a 29-yarder on fourth down, put the Demon Deacons up for good.  It is the first time the Jacksonville, Fla. native has thrown for over 300 yards while rushing for more than 100 in a game.

His performance reminded Babers of another quarterback’s stellar play against his defense.

“When’s the last time a quarterback has played like that against us?  Probably the guy we’re about to play next,” Babers said.

The guy they play next?  Reigning Heisman Trophy winner Lamar Jackson.

First Half Momentum Unsustainable for Orange

Both offenses got off to hot starts in the first half.  Wake Forest scored touchdowns on each of its first three possessions in the first quarter, with drives spanning 73, 80, and 75 yards.  Syracuse scored two touchdowns after each of the Demon Deacons’ first two to make it 14-14 before Wake Forest scored a third time in a row to make it 21-14.

Not to be outdone, Syracuse put 24 straight points on the board, including three touchdowns, to make the score 38-21.  Wake Forest added a field goal as the first half ended to make it a 38-24 Syracuse advantage at the break.

The two teams combined for 762 total yards in the first half.

Syracuse did not score another touchdown the rest of the way.  Mahoney completed just 11 of his 25 second half passes, and the offense sputtered down the stretch.

“Wake played a great second half,” Mahoney said. “They did a lot and they had a great scheme to not let us get as many big plays as we did in the first half.”

Backs Against the Wall

With the victory, Wake Forest moved to 6-4 on the year, securing bowl eligibility in consecutive seasons.

Meanwhile, Syracuse dropped to 4-6 overall and 2-4 in ACC play.  Since the 27-24 upset of the second-ranked Clemson Tigers, the Orange has lost three straight games. With just two contests left in the season, the Orange must now win out to reach a bowl game for the first time since the 2013 Pinstripe Bowl.

“It’s do or die time,” Franklin said. “Moving forward to next week, we have a sense of urgency at an all-time high. We have to find a way to get a win.”

Murphy Writes Name in Record Books

Syracuse senior kicker Cole Murphy made two field goals against Wake Forest, the second placing his name atop the SU list of career field goals made with 58.  He’s already notched a career high in field goals made this season with 19.

Murphy has had issues with accuracy the past two weeks.  Against FSU, he missed two field goals, the second of which would have sent the game to overtime.  He also missed a pair of kicks against Wake Forest in Saturday’s contest.

A First Time For Everything

With just 1:08 remaining in the first quarter, Wolford hit Serigne for a 19-yard touchdown pass, making the score 41-40 in favor of Syracuse.  Most wrote it off as a newly tied game, but that’s why they attempt the extra point.

Kayton Samuels got a hand up and blocked Mike Weaver’s PAT attempt.  It was picked up by Syracuse cornerback Scoop Bradshaw, who proceeded to run it all the way back for a two-point conversion.  While there is no official yard distance attached to Bradshaw’s return, he picked the ball up at the 10-yard line and ran it back 90 yards.

Per Syracuse Athletics, the return is the first defensive PAT return for the Orange. It is an unorthodox way for Bradshaw to appear in the football program’s history books, but an honor he’ll take.

Military Appreciation Day
On Veterans Day weekend, the football program took time to pay tribute to those who have served and are serving the country.  During pregame ceremonies, those who committed to serve in a branch of the military took their respective oaths of enlistment.  Additionally, the Orange named Maj. General Walter E. Piatt and CSM Samuel J. Roark, who are stationed at Fort Drum, honorary captains.

After the first quarter, Mike Chemotti, a Syracuse University alum and former walk-on football player who served during World War II, was honored as the “Hometown Hero.”  He was joined by junior wide receiver Ben Brickman, a walk-on himself who served four years in the Marines and completed two tours in Afghanistan.

The Orange wore all gray uniforms in honor of Military Appreciation Day.  The team also wore helmets with a special decal on the sides of the 44 tomahawk logo in camouflage.

Up Next

The Orange travels
to Papa John’s Stadium next Saturday for a 3:30 game with the Louisville Cardinals.  The game will be televised on either ESPN2 or ESPNU.

Syracuse wraps up the regular season on November 25 when Boston College comes to the Carrier Dome.

Videos

Sports Matters 2017

February 22, 2017

Sports Matters (Panel 1)

Sports Matters (Panel 1)

The Newhouse Sports Media Center hosted Sports Matters, a daylong symposium examining current issues in sports media, on Feb. 22, 2017, on campus. Participants in this panel included: Jason Dumas ’11, sports director, WHAG-TV, Hagerstown, Maryland; Patti Kleinman-Fallick ’78, senior director, broadcast operations, United States Tennis Association; Erika Wachter ’12, sports reporter, Fox 5 New York; and John Wildhack ’80, director of Athletics, Syracuse University. Simon Perez, assistant professor of broadcast and digital journalism at the Newhouse School, was moderator.

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Sports Matters (Panel 2)

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The Newhouse Sports Media Center hosted Sports Matters, a daylong symposium examining current issues in sports media, on Feb. 22, 2017, on campus. Participants in this panel included: Ahmed Fareed ’02, sports anchor, Comcast Sportsnet Bay Area; Dale Hansen, sports director, WFAA-TV Dallas-Ft. Worth; Karl Ravech, host, ESPN, William C. Rhoden, retired columnist, The New York Times; and Claire Smith, coordinating editor, Universal News Group, ESPN. Joel Kaplan, associate dean for professional graduate studies at the Newhouse School, was moderator.

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Sports Matters (Panel 3)

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The Newhouse Sports Media Center hosted Sports Matters, a daylong symposium examining current issues in sports media, on Feb. 22, 2017, on campus. Participants in this panel included: Cary Chow, host/anchor/reporter, ESPN and ESPN.com; Kimberley A. Martin G’06, New York Jets beat writer, Newsday; Dave McMenamin ’05, Cleveland Cavaliers beat writer, ESPN.com; and Sarina Morales ’08, morning host, “SportsCenter,” ESPN. Anne Osborne, associate professor of communications at the Newhouse School, was moderator.

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November 29, 2016

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ESPN play-by-play commentator Sean McDonough ’84 spoke at the Newhouse School at Syracuse University Nov. 29, 2016, as a guest of the Newhouse Sports Media Center. McDonough, a Newhouse alumnus, was named the voice of ESPN’s “Monday Night Football” in 2016.

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Coach Jim Boeheim on Sports Media

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