I’m back folks.
The off week is exactly what I needed to overcome the shock of Clemson’s early-season abomination and recalibrate my hate. I admit it, after losing to NC State, the hate that I normally aim at the heart of the opponent has been aimed inward (not that the Tigers didn’t deserve hate after losing to that scummy, second rate outfit from Raleigh...no Drew...focus...focus the hate on Syracuse, don’t think about NC State). After another near humbling, and this time from a team hailing from almost Boston, if Clemson isn’t aware of its own mortality yet, I don’t think anything I say will help.
That brings me to Syracuse. Outside of the gaping pit of hell that is Columbia, South Carolina and their football equivalent of the Washington Generals, no team excites the bile in my liver like The Orange from Central New York.
Let’s get after it.
Dino knocked off Clemson, but at what cost?
As much as I hate Syracuse, I don’t have anything bad to say about Dino Babers. In fact, I pity the poor man. He fell into the “I beat Clemson” trap head first and can’t free himself from the industrial wasteland otherwise known as Syracuse. If you gave Dino truth serum and pressed him about his biggest regret as a football coach, he would tell you it was beating Clemson in 2017.
You may be thinking, “Drew, what are you on about now? Beating Clemson is the highlight of his career! Look at this hype video they made after winning a regular-season home game against a freshman backup quarterback!”
Friends, that victory gave Dino belief. It made him believe that he could win in a God-forsaken college football outpost like Syracuse. He flopped a royal flush, but instead of taking his money, running out the back door, and never looking back, he stacked his chips, decided this poker thing isn’t hard after all, and has been bleeding ever since. As a wise man once said, “You got to know when to hold, em, know when to fold em, know when to walk away, know when to run.”
Folks, Dino should have run.
I watched the first few seconds of his post Wake presser, and I got slightly emotional. Look what Syracuse has done to him. The man has the unbearable weight of regret pressing upon his shoulders.
He had the perfect opportunity to escape after following up his program defining regular-season home win against a freshman backup quarterback with a 10 win 2018. He was a Chase Brice miracle comeback away from knocking off the Tigers 2 seasons in a row. The sky was the limit! The glory days of Paul Pasqualoni were upon him. Sure he was going to have to rebuild the entire roster in 2019, but he rebuilt it when he arrived in Central New York and managed to beat THE Clemson Tigers (at home, in a regular-season game, with a backup quarterback)! The kings of the ACC - the conquerors of college football! The scourge of the Alabama Crimson Tide!
I’m sure his agent fielded overtures from legit football programs seeking his services after 2018. Dino, at the time, was a good coach. He ran an exciting offense, gave heartfelt speeches, and to be honest with you, if Dabo left, I would have happily welcomed 2018 Dino to the Clemson sidelines. Babers, unfortunately, was still blinded by the belief the Clemson win drilled into his heart. The rush of doing the seemingly impossible is addictive, and instead of seeking more fertile college football coaching ground, he planted himself in the frozen, hard-packed earth of Syracuse, New York, and has withered into a sad, leafless, gnarled stump of a tree, praying for the sweet release of a merciful chainsaw death.
It’s time for Clemson to play the role of the chainsaw.
Why Hate Syracuse?
Some of you may wonder why I hate Syracuse. They’re a nothing program from a school that would rather watch Jaxtlyn Humperdink IV catch a ball with what I can only assume is a repurposed piece of fishing gear into a hockey goal someone drug into the infield of a track, than attend a football game in an unventilated, repurposed airplane hangar. Why would I waste a moment of my precious time disrespecting a program that clearly doesn’t respect itself? Have you ever even been to Syracuse?
Let me explain.
Maybe it’s their abuse of the color orange.
Orange should stand for greatness, but instead, is used as the banner for a team that would appreciate the compliment of being referred to as mediocre.
The fact that we are forced to share orange with Syracuse makes me want to play in all purple, on the off chance that someone confuses Clemson with Syracuse.
Maybe it’s the fan base.
Look at this tailgating piece from 2013.
Look at the noodle-armed attempts to throw a football onto the roof of a parking garage. If my 7-year-old daughter threw a football like the grown men of Syracuse I would have her in the weight room every morning at 5 a.m. until she no longer embarrassed our family.
Look at the valiant Clemson fans who braved the trip north in an attempt to commune with the enemy, only to find “like 3 tailgates.”
Maybe I hate any university that voluntarily associates with Jim Boeheim.
Nothing more needs to be said about this.
The truth is, I’ve never been to Syracuse.
Maybe one day I’ll bite the bullet and stand in the drizzling rain with dozens of other college football fans huddled around a tire fire in a parking lot behind the meat processing plant, but I doubt it. Our time on this earth is limited, and time is our greatest resource. Squandering one second of it in central New York is a tragedy only the ancient Greeks can properly articulate. When I’m on my death bed, and someone asks about my biggest regret, I don’t want to have to whisper “visiting Syracuse” to the throngs of family, friends, and fans holding vigil. I spent 7 years of my life in College Station, Texas, and that’s enough regret for any one man to carry.
This has been a disappointing season for us all, but pounding the vile “Orangemen” into a pulp in front of the 17 drifters who mistook the Carrier Dome for suitable shelter should help everyone feel better about things. A Clemson break-out game is in order. Out of respect for Dino, we should do to the Orange what we did for Al Golden in 2015 and put him out of his misery with a beating so savage, Syracuse has no choice but to fire him.
Dino, this one is for you buddy. It might hurt in the moment, but it’s for your own good.
You’ll thank us later.
I’ll see y’all next week. Stay safe and keep hating.