Mettus: Now that Syracuse football has shown what it can be, it can’t revert to what it was

first_imgCHESTNUT HILL, Mass. — There were no fans or students rushing onto the field — the game was on the road at Boston College, after all.The Syracuse players on the field slowly congregated near the center of the field, then shifted toward the southeast corner of the stadium to greet the 30 or so fans and family members waiting. The travel band, about a quarter of the size of its full roster, competed with the louder BC alma mater.Orange head coach Dino Babers didn’t talk about the program, the community or the university during his postgame press conference. His postgame speech to the team was likely nothing like last week’s, though we’ll never get to see it.Syracuse’s 28-20 win over Boston College on Saturday didn’t feel anything like the upset of then-No. 17 Virginia Tech seven days prior. But in the context of just this season, it was nearly as important.MORE COVERAGE:AdvertisementThis is placeholder textSyracuse hangs on to defeat Boston College, 28-20Eric Dungey on scuffle: ‘Some guy’s standing over me talking smack’Outside receivers Amba Etta-Tawo and Steve Ishmael shine against BC Published on October 22, 2016 at 8:21 pm Facebook Twitter Google+center_img “The winner of the game (is) probably in a very good situation to have an opportunity to go bowling,” Babers said during his SportsCenter appearance on Wednesday before the game.A loss would have erased the accomplishments of the VT game for this season, but SU’s win over BC put it two wins away from a bowl game (and maybe even just one) with four games left in the season. Babers’ cake might not yet be done baking, but at this point, not making a bowl game would be a disappointment. That’s the expectation that has been set in the last two weeks.Now that Syracuse has shown what it can be, it can’t revert to what it was.“It feels good,” Orange receiver Amba Etta-Tawo said. “… Hopefully at the end of the season we’re looking at at least six wins. Bowl eligible.”Let’s take a step back.Before this season I said a 4-8 finish would mean a successful year and predicted the Orange to lose out through its final four matchups of the season. I called the Florida State game an automatic loss.Now, SU has already guaranteed at least the four-win season. And that unwinnable Florida State game looks a lot different. The Seminoles haven’t looked fantastic, beating Wake Forest by 11 and Miami by one.Jessica Sheldon | Photo EditorThe Orange has already beaten one ranked team in the Carrier Dome this year. There’s a chance fans pour onto the field and chant Babers’ name in the west end zone again.“All we proved is that we’re occasionally great,” Babers said at his press conference the Monday after the game. “And what I want this football team to be is consistently good. It bothers me that we’re not consistently good.”Two wins in a row (accomplished after BC) is more consistently good than any point since September of last year when the Orange won its first three games.SU has a bye next week. After the BC game, Babers couldn’t say which team the Orange plays next. The schedule goes No. 3 Clemson on the road, North Carolina State then No. 12 Florida State at home, and at Pittsburgh to end the year.“We’ve got to find a way,” Babers said. “We need a slingshot and a rock.”A slingshot, a rock, whatever the tools may be, it’s clear Syracuse has them stashed away somewhere. Whether it be Eric Dungey’s ability to throw around the field, the diverse receiving threats or the now timely and improved play of the defense, it’s just a matter of whether Syracuse pulls them out together and at the right time.Bowl or not, this already can’t be a disappointing season. Babers and his team have already secured what he referred to as a potentially program-changing win that turned the team into a family. Check back in a few years on that one.We’ve seen progress in the team. We’ve seen potentially what it could be.But in the now, with an achievement not seen in Syracuse in three years within reaching distance, anything but a bowl game will be a short-term disappointment. And it should be, too.Jon Mettus is an Asst. Sports Editor at The Daily Orange, where his column appears occasionally. He can be reached at [email protected] or @jmettus. Commentslast_img read more

Read More »

Champions League bracket 2020: Teams, standings, schedule & more to know for UEFA Round of 16 matches

first_imgAs with most of European soccer, though, Champions League will return to complete its tournament. Five months and nine days will have passed between the first legs of Manchester City-Real Madrid and Juventus-Lyon and the Aug. 7 resumption of those series.It’s doubtful there’s ever been anything like this, but at least it’s happening.MORE: Watch Champions League matches live on fuboTV (7-day free trial)Champions League bracket 2020The @ChampionsLeague bracket! pic.twitter.com/r9EdxIdxiz— FC Barcelona (@FCBarcelona) July 10, 2020When the pandemic hiatus began, four teams — Atletico Madrid, RB Leipzig, Paris Saint-Germain and Atalanta — had established themselves as quarterfinalists. Four series remained unsettled.UEFA will complete the Round of 16 as originally scheduled, albeit delayed. Teams that were on the road for the first leg of the round will get to play at home in the second leg. There will be no spectators allowed, though, mitigating homefield advantage.Man City will be at home against Real Madrid; City owns a 2-1 advantage after its trip to Madrid. Lyon is ahead of Juventus by a 1-0 score but has to visit Turin for the second leg. Barcelona and Napoli are tied 1-1 after the first leg in Naples. Chelsea is in a massive 3-0 hole heading to Germany for the second leg against Bayern Munich.UEFA held a draw July 10 to establish the matchups for the quarterfinals, semifinals and final, all of which will be contested at two stadiums in Lisbon: the Estadio Jose Alvalade and the Estadio do Sport Lisboa e Benfica (also known as Estadio da Luz).The quarterfinals and semifinals, customarily two-leg series, will be single-elimination, staged one match per day from Aug. 12-15.The semifinals will be contested Aug. 18-19.The final will be Sunday, Aug. 23 at Estadio da Luz.How to watch Champions League in the USA, CanadaTurner Sports had secured rights to Champions League from previous rightsholder Fox Sports back in 2017, with a deal that was scheduled to run through the 2020-21 competition.Last October, CBS won the rights to tournaments starting in 2021-22, but in early July, Turner surprised the soccer world by relinquishing the rights to the remainder of this tournament as well as the full 2020-21 event.CBS announced it plans to put the majority of the 2020 tournament on its streaming service, CBS All Access, with only a few games — including the Aug. 23 final — on its cable channel CBS Sports Network. None of this season’s games will be on the main CBS channel.The main CBS network has a conflict with the Northern Trust golf tournament on the day of the final. But during the quarterfinals (and one presumes the semis, although schedules aren’t available yet), CBS Sports Network is airing its regular daily talk show, Tiki and Tierney, rather than soccer.So it is apparent CBS is pushing for subscribers to sign up for CBS All Access, which costs $5.99 per month for the option that includes commercial advertisements. There is a one-month free trial period.The games on CBS Sports Network are also available on fuboTV, which offers a seven-day free trial.For viewers in Canada, Champions League games are on DAZN, the global streaming sports service.Champions League schedule 2020Here is the complete TV schedule to watch Champions League games in the United States. (In Canada, every game is available via DAZN.)Round of 16DateTime (ET)MatchTV, live streamAug. 73 p.m.Manchester City vs. Real MadridCBS Sports Network, CBS All Access, fuboTVAug. 73 p.m.Juventus vs. LyonCBS All AccessAug. 83 p.m.Barcelona vs. NapoliCBS Sports Network, CBS All Access, fuboTVAug. 83 p.m.Bayern Munich vs. ChelseaCBS All AccessQuarterfinalsDateTime (ET)MatchTV, live streamAug. 123 p.m.Atalanta vs. Paris Saint-GermainCBS All Access Aug. 133 p.m.Red Bull Leipzig vs. Atletico MadridCBS All AccessAug. 143 p.m.Napoli/Barcelona winner vs. Bayern/Chelsea winnerCBS All AccessAug. 153 p.m.Man City/Real Madrid winner vs. Juventus/Lyon winnerCBS All AccessSemifinalsDateTime (ET)MatchTV, live streamAug. 183 p.m.TBDCBS All AccessAug. 193 p.m.TBDCBS All AccessFinalDateTime (ET)MatchTV, live streamAug. 233 p.m.TBDCBS Sports Network, CBS All Access, fuboTVMORE: Watch Champions League matches live on fuboTV (7-day free trial)Are there any American players left?Chelsea fell in a deep, probably insurmountable deficit with a 3-0 first-leg loss at home to Bayern Munich when winger Christian Pulisic was out injured — and before he emerged as one of the brightest stars of the Premier League’s resumption.Unfortunately for Chelsea and American fans, Pulisic is injured again and will miss Saturday’s second leg. Pulisic suffered a hamstring injury in Chelsea’s FA Cup final loss to Arsenal on Saturday.That means we won’t get the pleasure of Pulisic being on the same field as Canada’s Alphonso Davies, one of the world’s best young players over the course of the 2019-20 season. Davies scored three goals and recorded six assists, mostly from the left back position, as Bayern ran away with the Bundesliga title. He has three assists to date in Champions League.Midfielder Tyler Adams started five of nine games for RB Leipzig following the hiatus, playing multiple positions but primarily as a midfielder. Leipzig went 4-1-4 in those games, enough to stay ahead of Borussia Monchengladbach and finish third. Leipzig will face defensive-oriented Atletico in its quarterfinal game, which would mean a compelling challenge when Adams is on the field.Champions League standings 2020Bayern Munich from Germany’s Bundesliga was the only club to earn all 18 of the available points in the group stage, as it swept Group B in dominating fashion. Bayern also finished the group stage with the best goal differential (+19) in the Champions League.Below are the group stage tables that helped set the bracket for the Champions League elimination rounds.Group ATeamPlayedWinsDrawsLossesGoals forGoals againstGoal differentialPointsParis Saint-Germain65101721516Real Madrid CF6321148611Club Brugge6033412-83Galatasaray AŞ6024114-132Group BTeamPlayedWinsDrawsLossesGoals forGoals againstGoal differentialPointsFC Bayern München66002451918Tottenham Hotspur63121814410Olympiacos FC6114814-64FK Crvena zvezda6105320-173Group CTeamPlayedWinsDrawsLossesGoals forGoals againstGoal differentialPointsManchester City FC64201641214Atalanta BC6213812-47FC Shakhtar Donetsk6132813-56GNK Dinamo Zagreb61231013-35Group DTeamPlayedWinsDrawsLossesGoals forGoals againstGoal differentialPointsJuventus6510124816Club Atlético de Madrid631285310Bayer 04 Leverkusen620459-46FC Lokomotiv Moskva6105411-73Group ETeamPlayedWinsDrawsLossesGoals forGoals againstGoal differentialPointsLiverpool FC6411138513SSC Napoli6330114712FC Salzburg6213161337KRC Genk6015520-151Group FTeamPlayedWinsDrawsLossesGoals forGoals againstGoal differentialPointsFC Barcelona642094514Borussia Dortmund631288010FC Internazionale Milano621310917SK Slavia Praha6024410-62Group GTeamPlayedWinsDrawsLossesGoals forGoals againstGoal differentialPointsRB Leipzig6321108211Olympique Lyonnais62229818SL Benfica62131011-17FC Zenit621379-27Group HTeamPlayedWinsDrawsLossesGoals forGoals againstGoal differentialPointsValencia CF632197211Chelsea FC6321119211AFC Ajax6312126610LOSC Lille6015414-101 One of the last images we saw of competition before world sport was shut down by the COVID-19 pandemic was the furious battle between Atletico Madrid and reigning champion Liverpool FC to remain active in the 2020 UEFA Champions League.Atletico pulled out a victory in extra time to advance to the quarterfinals, spoiling LFC’s chance to retain the cup. But it seemed for a while — a long while — that might be as far as this went. There was every reason to believe the Champions League season might be abandoned.last_img read more

Read More »