Saturday, November 21, 2009

Ouch! Knightmare In The Afternoon- Rutgers Falls To Syracuse 31-13

Rutgers Head Coach Greg Schiano put it this way in his post game press conference...."We didn't play well, we didn't coach well- and that's on me....my hat's off to Syracuse".

Rutgers was ranked #25 in the AP poll, 7-3 overall and 2-2 in the Big East. The Syracuse Orange came into the game at 3-7, 0-5 in conference. Rutgers was an eight point favorite.

An injury ravaged Syracuse ran the ball down Rutgers throats, and sacked Rutgers quarterback Tom Savage nine times in a 31-13 upset.

Ladies and gents, it was so bad that I decided at halftime to go to 5:30 Saturday night Mass. I could pray for Divine intervention and for mercy from the media hounds and critics of my beloved team....I know, the Man Upstairs has more important things to do than worry about point spreads.

To be honest, I had a lot of apprehension about this game. Rutgers historically has a problem after big Thursday night wins. In 2006 Rutgers beat #3 Louisville 28-25 on a Thursday night; the next Saturday following the Saturday bye they lost at Cincinnati 30-11. In 2007 RU defeated #2 USF 30-27 on a Thursday night, only to get spanked the following Saturday by West Virginia 31-3 (wearing horrible black jerseys at home to boot).

And this month RU beat # 24 USF on a Thursday night 31-0, only to lay an egg the next Saturday. What made this one so painful is that RU's loss was to a regional rival....and was the only conference win this year for the Orange, who have already been eliminated from bowl contention.

I'll be back tomorrow with my regular "12 Hours Later" feature to look at this surprising but predictable loss, and I'll talk some more about the Big East landscape, including that big win by UCONN over Notre Dame in overtime.

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