Colin Byrne finds niche as starter at center for Syracuse

first_img Facebook Twitter Google+ Published on October 3, 2016 at 11:45 pm Contact Tomer: | @tomer_langer UPDATED: Oct. 4 at 8:30 p.m.After making his first collegiate start against South Florida, center Colin Byrne received praise from starting quarterback Eric Dungey, despite some low snaps. After the next game against Connecticut, head coach Dino Babers first said he couldn’t single out an offensive lineman who impressed him. He then said he was excited about the job Byrne did in his second start.For the former St. Thomas Aquinas (Florida) High School tackle, this wasn’t the way he, or anybody else, envisioned how his SU career would unfold. But that doesn’t mean he wasn’t ready.“I was up for the challenge and it’s worked out for me in the best way possible,” Byrne said.After sitting out a year and changing positions, Byrne has made an impact on Syracuse’s season. With no timetable for the return of incumbent starter Jason Emerich, it’ll be the redshirt freshman who’s tasked with leading Syracuse’s (2-3, 1-3 Atlantic Coast) young and inexperienced offensive line. AdvertisementThis is placeholder textThree out of Byrne’s four seasons at St Thomas Aquinas (Florida) High School resulted in state championships at the powerhouse school which played against top competition. But when he got to Syracuse he ended up having to redshirt, something he wasn’t planning on doing. “I came to Syracuse and I sat my freshman year, and that was a little disappointing,” Byrne said. “But you just gotta drop the ‘E’ and gotta go. Drop the ego.” Byrne’s high school coach, Rocco Casullo, thought Byrne was good enough to contribute immediately, but told Byrne to just “keep doing what you’re doing,” that things would work out for him. He knew Byrne would be ready coming from a school such as St. Thomas Aquinas, which he said had practice regimens on par with some collegiate programs. “It’s more comfortable and they’re used to it,” Casullo said. “They’re college ready.”He credited Dino Babers’ offensive scheme, as well as the work by co-offensive coordinator and offensive line coach Mike Lynch, as to why Byrne has looked good through three games so far.Former head coach Scott Shafer’s staff recruited Byrne as a tackle and redshirted him at the position. But this past training camp Babers’ coaching staff decided to test him out at center.Babers cited Byrne’s athletic build — being “long-bodied” and his ability to move well — as part of the reasons the coaching staff decided Byrne could physically play the position. “It was an opportunity for him to get on the field a lot faster,” Babers said. “When we made the move we didn’t think he’d have to go this year.” Byrne said learning to play center proved to be challenging because of all the extra checks and calls that had to be made. But Casullo cited Byrne’s intelligence as to why he could find success in a tough transition. Byrne has always been a vocal leader who’s played with a chip on his shoulder, Casullo said. Babers emphasized he had certain personality traits that made the coaching staff think a move to center would work out.“Let’s just say if he was a movie star, he’d be riding a chopper with his sleeves of his jacket chopped off and a bunch of tattoos,” Babers said. There have been moments where Byrne has struggled. A couple of snaps to Dungey haven’t been on target, and the offensive line as a whole has committed some crucial penalties that have pushed back Orange drives. But he’s also still learning and improving every week. And after finding playing time at a foreign position, Byrne is finding his niche. “Sometimes you gotta take a step down and learn a lot of things before you come to college and that’s exactly what I did,” Byrne said. “… I did my job and I can always get better and do better.”CORRECTION: In a previous version of this article, Rocco Casullo was misidentified. Casullo, whose correct first name is Rocco, was Colin Byrne’s high school coach. The Daily Orange regrets these errors. Commentslast_img read more

Beat writers unanimously pick Clemson to beat up on Syracuse

first_imgSyracuse (3-3, 1-1 Atlantic Coast) kicks off with No. 2 Clemson (6-0, 4-0) at 7 p.m. in the Carrier Dome. The Tigers beat the Orange 54-0 last year in Death Valley. Clemson has not won an ACC game by fewer than 14 points and won at then-hyped Louisville 47-21.Friday night’s SU-CU game will air on ESPN.Tomer Langer (5-1)Makes senseClemson 44, Syracuse 24Earlier this week, quarterback Eric Dungey said he liked the fact that nobody thought they’d be able to beat Clemson. And while it would be a good story for Syracuse to win this game, I need to throw my hat in with the group of people who don’t think the Orange will pull it off. Clemson’s defense is just too tough for SU to consistently crack, and if the Orange can’t move the ball it’ll give the Tigers short fields on offense. I think Syracuse manages to score by aggressively going for it on fourth downs, but Clemson should pull away.Matthew Gutierrez (4-2)Eye of the TigerClemson 45, Syracuse 17AdvertisementThis is placeholder textThe defending national champs prove to be too much for Syracuse, which only narrowly beat a fledgling Pittsburgh team last week. As head coach Dino Babers said this week, Clemson’s front is “O-M-G.” So is the rest of the team. Clemson has its way in the primetime matchup.Joe Bloss (4-2)As it should beClemson 31, Syracuse 20Eric Dungey and this Syracuse offense can do some very nice things when they have the time. But that necessary time will not be granted against a Clemson defensive line that has accounted for 14.5 of the Tigers’ 22 sacks. It will occasionally get ugly. Feel free to look away when it does. A solid Syracuse defense won’t let up 54 points like it did a year ago, but it won’t be able to contain Kelly Bryant and his weapons to a score Dungey and Co. can match. As it has been in Syracuse’s losses thus far, the better team will win. Comments Published on October 13, 2017 at 1:16 pm Facebook Twitter Google+last_img read more

Why Syracuse football is starting to speak up amid #NotAgainSU protest

first_imgAs incidents kept occurring, locker room conversations about the campus climate intensified. More players took to social media, following Cisco’s lead. Safety Evan Foster retweeted Gabrielle Union’s tweet on the protest. Walk-on wide receiver Kevin Johnson Jr. tweeted out “#NotAgainSU.” Moe Neal said after the Duke game he’d attended the sit-in to listen. Quarterback Tommy DeVito posted on his Instagram story on Tuesday the message from Renegade Magazine calling for classes to be cancelled following the sharing of the manifesto.When asked about the situation on campus the same evening, DeVito declined to speak on the matter, as did offensive lineman Carlos Vettorello.“It goes a long way,” Ruff said. “Because most people see us as — they kind of see as puppets on a string, they don’t expect us to speak out. But they know we have opinions. So the fact that we do speak out and they see us. It’s kind of, ‘OK we’re behind you as well. We don’t stand for this either.’”Gauging how and whether to engage with situations like the current one and Theta Tau falls on the players. The current situation, players said, feels like more of a groundswell of hate on a campus that’s supposed to be safe and welcoming. That element — one originally iterated by Cisco more than a week ago — has driven participation from players.It’s also difficult to openly criticize the institution that pays for your education, players said. Babers controls scholarships, and players trust their head coach would never punish a player in such harsh a fashion as stripping one’s scholarship for speaking their mind. As a whole, players said, Babers doesn’t encourage or discourage them from speaking up, regardless of his own feelings on the matter at hand.“Coach Babers understands in that situation you have a platform as a student-athlete and as a leader on campus to speak on something that may be important to you,” said Zaire Franklin, former SU linebacker from 2014-18 and three-year captain. “And just when you speak on something, be educated about it and just understand the possible ramifications of the things you say.”As some of the most public faces of the student body, Ruff knows he and his teammates can have an incredible reach when they open their mouths.That, in part, is why Ruff wants to speak at the sit-in. He’s tired of feeling like he’s on the sidelines, he said. The team felt comfortable sending him, knowing the senior defensive tackle’s affable locker room presence lends itself to Ruff delivering a message the whole team can publicly stand behind.The hope, then, is that others can stand behind them.— Senior Staff Writers Eric Black and Josh Schafer contributed reporting to this story Comments Kenneth Ruff Jr. woke up around 5:45 a.m. on Tuesday morning and read the same email he and 104 of his Syracuse football teammates received.As Ruff processed the events described in the email — a white supremacist shooter’s manifesto allegedly being posted online and shared on campus — his attention turned to the quickening pulse of text notifications buzzing his phone. Ruff, a senior who keeps in touch with as many players as possible, sifted through notes of anger, confusion and disappointment from teammates present and past.“I’m sad,” Ruff said Tuesday. “I don’t like to be like this. You know how I am. I smile all the time. And it’s been hard to do that today, especially when I have my girlfriend calling me asking me if I could walk her to class because she’s scared.”A day after Dino Babers said in his weekly press conference the team hadn’t addressed the matter as a whole, every player and coach was in the football auditorium on Tuesday morning.After a video detailing Theta Tau displaying “extremely racist” behavior was published in 2018, the football team collectively decided to keep any discussion on the issue in house. A similar conclusion was reached after the Ackerman Assault last winter. Even after Jim Boeheim visited protestors at the sit-in in the Barnes Center at the Arch, Babers deflected from the matter.AdvertisementThis is placeholder text“I think it’s the Constitutional right that you can protest anything, have free speech. It’s all written into the Constitution,” he said at his Monday press conference.But by Tuesday night, Ruff was in communication with the #NotAgainSU movement searching for a time he could address the protestors on behalf of the football team. Amid the recent spree of hate speech and bias-related incidents at Syracuse, the football team has started to take part in campus conversations it previously shied away from.“Now it’s, ‘Maybe we need to use our voice,’” Ruff said.All-American sophomore safety Andre Cisco made the first public comment, quote-tweeting an article about racial slurs being written in Day Hall and captioning it “…” Later that night, he explained his frustrations.“This is my fourth semester, and this is the third racist act that’s happened,” Cisco said then. “It bothers me a lot, just knowing who I am as a black man and what I stand for. At a school like this, I came here partially because I felt like black people were well represented up at Syracuse.”The ensuing Saturday against Duke, Cisco wore cleats with #NotAgainSU written on them to stand in solidarity with the protest occurring on campus, saying after the game he felt the protestors deserved recognition. Facebook Twitter Google+center_img Published on November 20, 2019 at 11:27 pm Contact Andrew: | @A_E_Grahamlast_img read more

Donaghy returning to basketball Super League

first_imgBasketball Ireland have confirmed Tralee Town, which comprises a combination of Tralee’s clubs, will enter the top tier of the league next season.The Kerry footballer was part of the St Brendan’s side that captured the intermediate cup last January.It has also been confirmed that Dublin KUBS have been granted permission to play in the top flight next season.last_img

Andreas Pereira Dissapointed Me, “Not Ready To Fight” – Mourinho

first_imgRelated Manchester United manager, Jose Mourinho has expressed his displeasure at Andreas Pereira’s loan move to Valencia, saying the teenage midfielder “is not ready to fight” for a place in United’s team.21-year-old Pereira, who spent last season on loan to another Spanish outfit Granada, joined Valencia on a season long move last month.Speaking ahead of United’s visit to Stoke City, Mourinho said: “Honestly I don’t think it is the best decision for him, it disappoints me a little bit, as he has potential to be here fighting for a position and opportunities to be a United player.”“The decision can be considered the decision of a young player that wants to play every weekend but is not ready to fight for something difficult – you have to be ready to fight.”“I am a bit disappointed he left but okay, it was his decision, he has a long term contract, and we have the option to bring him back on 1st January.”last_img read more

Reaction to the LA Clippers trading Austin Rivers to the Wizards for the Marcin Gortat

first_imgFeels like the Clippers are about to have a very interesting summer.— Duncan Smith (@DuncanSmithNBA) June 26, 2018 Clippers hope they can play to their capabilities, quell Mavericks’ momentum What the Clippers are saying the day after Luka Doncic’s game-winner tied series, 2-2 The Los Angeles Clippers have traded guard Austin Rivers to the Washington Wizards for center Marcin Gortat, according to ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski.Austin Rivers averaged 11.1 points per game during the four seasons he spent with the team. His father, Doc Rivers, is also the head coach of the Clippers.Gortat averaged 11.6 points and 9.2 rebounds per game during his five seasons with the Wizards.The report has also led basketball fans to believe that center DeAndre Jordan may also be on his way out of Los Angeles. Related Articles For Lakers’ LeBron James, Jacob Blake’s shooting is bigger issue than a big Game 4 victory Clippers vs. Mavericks Game 5 playoff updates from NBA beat reporters center_img Sign up for Home Turf and get 3 exclusive stories every SoCal sports fan must read, sent daily. Subscribe here.Clippers not keepin DJ n Gortat— SBLII💎🏆 (@T_Wheaton_) June 26, 2018 Wow. Austin Rivers got traded. Didn’t see that coming.— Aspiring Dodgers Fan (@Lakerella) June 26, 2018 Newsroom GuidelinesNews TipsContact UsReport an Error First domino— kuz (@kylekuzma) June 26, 2018Whether Los Angeles Lakers’ Kyle Kuzma is referring to the first domino of the offseason or for the Clippers to fall, he may not be completely wrong in either case.End of an era…— Bleacher Report NBA (@BR_NBA) June 26, 2018 Kristaps Porzingis ruled out as Clippers, Mavericks set for Game 5; Follow for game updates last_img read more

LA Dodgers rookie Andrew Toles will start Game 1 of NLDS

first_img Newsroom GuidelinesNews TipsContact UsReport an Error Toles conceded that the injury was affecting him at the plate, creeping into the mechanics of his swing. Roberts didn’t have Toles in the starting lineup for the final four games of the regular season and didn’t use Toles at all in the final two. Toles sat out Tuesday’s batting practice in Los Angeles, but he’s been on the field the last two days in D.C. “I am healthy,” Toles said confidently.That’s good news for the Dodgers and good news for the Toles family, who will be in the house for Game 1. Toles grew up in the Atlanta area, a two-hour flight from D.C. He said his father, mother, sister and others will make the trek.Just how many tickets will he be setting aside?“It’s going to be a lot of money out of my pocket,” he said.History in the makingRoberts and Dusty Baker are the first African-Americans to manage a playoff series from opposite dugouts. They’re also the only two African-American managers currently in the major-league ranks. “It gives us some pride in being African-American to show people that, you know, not only can we do the job, but we can do the job better than most,” said Baker, who is making his eighth trip to the postseason. “Especially this year.”Roberts’ father, Waymon, is black; his mother, Eiko, is Japanese. He is the first minority manager in the history of the Dodgers franchise, which joined the National League in 1890.“I think that when we look back it’s going to be more special,” Roberts said, “but I definitely know it’s certainly noted, and not to go unappreciated.”Added Baker, “hopefully it motivates other organizations to get some African-American managers; also to motivate other players that are playing now and former players that have managerial aspirations.”Two jobs became vacant this week when the Arizona Diamondbacks fired Chip Hale and the Colorado Rockies didn’t renew the expiring contract of Walt Weiss.AlsoCorey Seager is the Dodgers’ nominee for the Hank Aaron award, which recognizes the most outstanding offensive performer in each league since it was established in 1999. Fans can cast ballots on and on Twitter using the hashtag #VoteCorey. Matt Kemp (2011) is the only Dodger to win the award. … Livan Hernandez was scratched from his ceremonial first pitch duties in Game 1 because of travel complications caused by Hurricane Matthew. The storm is expected to mostly miss the D.C. area, though the forecast calls for rain Saturday afternoon. Toles, 24, regularly started against right-handed pitchers down the stretch for the Dodgers, so the starting assignment wasn’t terribly surprising.“I’m pretty used to it,” Toles said.Even though he spent all of April in Single-A before earning his first major-league promotion in July, Toles’ teammates are used to it now, too. As a Dodger, he batted .314 with a .365 on-base percentage in 48 games.“Is he starting? That’s awesome,” said pitcher Clayton Kershaw, who will start Game 1 for the Dodgers. “Tolesy; he’s great. Obviously very talented. You watch him throw and you watch him take batting practice, all that stuff. But for him to put the bat on the ball as consistently as he has, hard contact for this first month and a half that he’s been up, I mean, to be honest, I didn’t even know we had a guy named Andrew Toles in the minor leagues.”Toles throws right-handed and bats left-handed. So when he injured a tendon in his left wrist during a September series at Yankee Stadium, it never affected his standout skills in the outfield. But Toles’ batting stats sank as he hit 8 for 34 (.235) with no home runs from that series onward.center_img WASHINGTON >> There was no brace on Andrew Toles’ left wrist Thursday as the Dodgers took batting practice at Nationals Park, not long after Dave Roberts said the rookie would start in left field in Game 1 of the National League Division Series Friday.“Where he hits in the order, I haven’t decided yet,” Roberts said.Max Scherzer will start for the Nationals, a tough matchup for any rookie. The right-hander went 20-7 with a league-leading 284 strikeouts in the regular season, making him perhaps the front-runner for the N.L. Cy Young award.The kid gloves, the wrist brace, they’re all off now.last_img read more

Kawhi Leonard free agency rumors: Star taking his time ‘before deciding the next move’

first_imgLeonard averaged 30.5 points in the playoffs, was named the Finals MVP and helped the Raptors avoid elimination by knocking down a crazy bouncing buzzer beater in the fourth quarter of Game 7 against the 76ers in the second round.KAWHI CALLED SERIES!— Toronto Raptors (@Raptors) May 13, 2019Leonard is the biggest free agent remaining on the market. What we know:1. The Lakers, as we’ve been saying for more than a week now, believe they are firmly in the lead largely through the recruiting efforts and assurances made on separate fronts from Magic Johnson and LeBron James …— Marc Stein (@TheSteinLine) July 2, 20193. The Raptors haven’t backed off one centimeter and Drake is said to be mounting his own recruiting campaign on top of whatever the freshly minted champions are doing to convince him to stay— Marc Stein (@TheSteinLine) July 2, 2019Leonard was sent from the Spurs to Toronto in a blockbuster trade last summer and he almost single-handedly carried the team to its first title in franchise history. On the Kawhi front, told he’s not making a decision tonight and it may not be until the next few days. He and his reps are going through the process and taking their time before deciding the next move. No 2-year deals have been discussed. #NBA @TheAthleticNBA— Jabari Young (@JabariJYoung) July 4, 2019The Lakers believe they’re “firmly in the lead” to land the star because of the “recruiting efforts and assurances made on separate fronts” by former president of basketball operations Magic Johnson and LeBron James, according to an earlier report from the New York Times.Rapper and Raptors fan Drake “is said to be mounting his own recruiting campaign on top of whatever the freshly minted champions are doing” to convince Leonard to stay, the Times’ report says. Related News NBA free agency rumors: Lakers, 76ers will pursue Kyle Korver after he receives buyout from Suns Kawhi Leonard free agency rumors: Star followed by helicopters as decision looms Kawhi Leonard’s free agency decision may not come for a few more days.The star and his representatives “are going through the process and taking their time before deciding the next move,” according to a report from The Athletic. Leonard is considering the Lakers, Clippers and returning to the Raptors, according to multiple reports. Kawhi Leonard free agency rumors: Knicks canceled meeting with star because of ‘logistics’last_img read more

Heisman Trophy odds 2020: Trevor Lawrence, Justin Fields, Kedon Slovis & more early favorites

first_imgThe Clemson Tigers may have lost the national championship to LSU, but the oddsmakers believe there is reason to smile heading into the offseason.Clemson is favored to win the 2020-21 College Football Playoff national championship, according to the latest college football futures odds, and Trevor Lawrence is the favorite to win the Heisman Trophy next season. No Clemson player has ever won the Heisman Trophy in the long history of the award, making this one of the few schools with multiple national championships in the modern era and no Heisman winners. Lawrence will have a tough time going wire to wire to win the Heisman Trophy given the recent history of the award.MORE: Get the latest NCAA odds & betting advice at Sports InsiderHeisman Trophy odds 2020Trevor Lawrence (Clemson) +350Justin Fields (Ohio State) +400Kedon Slovis (USC) +900Chuba Hubbard (Oklahoma State) +1000Mac Jones (Alabama) +1000Sam Ehlinger (Texas) +1000Spencer Rattler (Oklahoma) +1000Tanner Morgan (Minnesota) +1000Derek Stingley Jr. (LSU) +1600Kenneth Gainwell (Memphis) +1600Kyle Trask (Florida) +1600Myles Brennan (LSU) +1600Sam Howell (North Carolina) +1600Ja’Marr Chase (LSU) +2000Bo Nix (Auburn) +3300Brock Purdy (Iowa State) +3300Chatarius Atwell (Louisville) +3300Ian Book (Notre Dame) +3300Javian Hawkins (Louisville) +3300Jaylen Waddle (Alabama) +3300Rondale Moore (Purdue) +3300Trey Sanders (Alabama) +3300Zamir White (Georgia) +3300D’Eriq King +5000Dillon Gabriel (UCF) +5000Jaret Patterson (Buffalo) +5000Journey Brown (Penn State) +5000Michael Penix Jr. (Indiana) +5000Sean Clifford (Penn State) +5000Spencer Sanders (Oklahoma State) +5000Tylan Wallace (Oklahoma State) +5000Tyler Huntley (Utah) +5000How long will Trevor Lawrence stick as favorite?Being the preseason favorite to win the Heisman Trophy typically doesn’t work out well. Pundits have the entire summer to highlight potential concerns, and they are expected to constantly perform with the eyes of the nation upon them. Tua Tagovailoa was the preseason favorite in each of the last two seasons and lost the award to preseason longshots in Kyler Murray and Joe Burrow, and we have generally seen players with odds of 10-1 or more in the summer win the Heisman over the past two decades.Lawrence could disrupt that recent trend. He is the early favorite to be the No. 1 pick in the 2021 NFL Draft, and he should put up dazzling numbers next season even if he doesn’t have Tee Higgins. The Tigers are far more talented than any other team in the ACC, so Lawrence could surpass 4,000 yards and 40 touchdowns for the first time in his career if Dabo Swinney plays him enough. Lawrence also has a statement game on the schedule as the Tigers travel to South Bend to take on Notre Dame on Nov. 7.MORE: Early odds to win the 2020 national championshipJustin Fields set up for success at Ohio StateJustin Fields is just behind Lawrence in terms of the futures odds. Fields led one of the best offenses in the country last year, but he didn’t post the numbers needed to win the Heisman Trophy. Ohio State had the best power run game in the nation, and Ryan Day was content to lean on J.K. Dobbins. Fields didn’t throw for more than 235 yards in a game until mid-November, but he only threw one interception in the regular season. Fields will need to put up gaudier numbers to become a real Heisman Trophy contender in 2020. He did run for 10 touchdowns, but he only ran when needed to, and it appears that Day won’t ask him to do too much. There will be a lot of preseason hype surrounding Fields, but it’s unlikely the production will be there.Will Kedon Slovis start at USC in 2020?Kedon Slovis is the only other player with odds of less than 10-1 to win the Heisman Trophy. Slovis was surprisingly effective as a true freshman at the helm of USC’s offense, and he has one of the sharpest offensive minds in the game calling plays in Graham Harrell. Harrell was the quarterback at Texas Tech during Mike Leach’s halcyon years with the Red Raiders, and he has modified those Air Raid schemes to great success.  However, Slovis isn’t even guaranteed to be USC’s starter in 2020. Slovis replaced J.T. Daniels after Daniels was lost for the season in Week 1 against Fresno State, and the two will be competing in the most high-profile quarterback battle of the summer. Additionally, this offense will be without key pieces as star left tackle Austin Jackson declared early for the NFL Draft and top receiver Michael Pittman Jr. just finished his senior season.MORE: SN’s way-too-early top 25 for 2020 seasonThe best Heisman value betsThe best value on the board lies in D’Eriq King. King will be joining some school as a graduate transfer in the coming weeks after announcing his intention to leave Houston, and he has no shortage of suitors. He could join fellow transfers like Baker Mayfield, Kyler Murray, and Jalen Hurts in heading to Norman to shine under Lincoln Riley, and LSU is reportedly interested in King, too. If he ends up starting at Oklahoma or LSU, his Heisman Trophy betting odds are likely to be 12-1 or less in August.last_img read more