For the Syracuse football team, this statement continues to ring true.
The Orange (4-5, 2-3) have yet to win a road game this year, after losing 27-24 to Florida State (3-5, 3-4) today. There were plenty of fireworks up to the final whistle when Syracuse missed the potential game-tying field goal allowing the Noles to escape with a 3-point victory. Syracuse head coach Dino Babers had a solid performance from quarterback Eric Dungey, but that was not enough to earn the victory. Dungey headed to the locker room without putting weight on one foot after the first drive. It was only the second time that Florida State had scored on its opening drive.
FSU is still in contention for bowl eligibility after its third win of the season, with at least three more games to reach six wins for a bowl eligibility or five if FSU has higher April scores than other five-win teams. Entering the day, Murphy had missed twice all season.
Dungey re-entered the game with over 10 minutes to go in the first half and immediately made an impact. Florida State defensive lineman Derrick Nnadi led Florida State with seven tackles, including one sack. Dungey rushed for a career-high 109 yards and passed for 278, with two touchdowns. On fourth-and-3 from the FSU 4, Dungey was pressured by James and threw an incomplete pass to the end zone.
The game was all Florida State early. The Seminoles might not even hang on to beat the Orange.
The second half saw Syracuse force a three and out on defense and then kicked a field goal to cut the lead to 21-17. Four minutes later, Syracuse struck back.
And Dungey did what was needed of him, scrambling for 21 yards on the first play of that possession and converting a 3rd-and-14 on a timing route to Ishmael. Florida State recovered but the 'Cuse defensive was stout and forced the Seminoles to punt. SU started its final drive from its own 18-yard line before coming up short. The next series, Dungey picked up a first down on a third and 14, after he threw a 15-yard pass to Ishmael at midfield. The senior had 12 catches for 107 yards, and now has 217 catches for his career.
Syracuse pulled within one touchdown and had a chance to tie the game heading into halftime.
Tallahassee, Fla. - Eric Dungey did everything humanly possible to give Syracuse football a chance to upset Florida State, and he did it on one leg.
The game did not go as planned for Syracuse.
But the great news for fans is after seeing Akers' incredible breakout game against the Orange on Saturday, they have every reason to be hopeful about the future - especially when you remember quarterback James Blackman is only a freshman too. The real issue was the run defense.
Cam Akers finished the game with 199 rushes on 22 carries and two touchdowns. He also had a long touchdown run of 63 yards in the second quarter. On the receiving end of things, the duo of Steve Ishmael and Ervin Philips dominated once again.