When I was a copy editor for the sports section of the SU student paper The Daily Orange in the spring of 2011, we put together a yearly spread on the football recruits that committed to Syracuse for the 2011 season. The Orange was coming off an 8-5 record (including a bowl win) and Doug Marrone had the program on the rise, ready for Year 3 of the Marrone era.
The 2011 class included some names you may find familiar—Adonis Ameen-Moore, Ashton Broyld, Durrell Eskridge, Cam Lynch, Brandon Reddish—to name a few. But there was one player in that class that I vividly remember hearing about—Terrel Hunt, a quarterback from New York.
Four years and a redshirt later, I believe SU will go as far as Hunt, now the starting QB, will take the Orange.
His first couple of years on campus, SU was in full Ryan Nassib mode at quarterback, and rightfully so.
Then came 2013. Highly touted transfer Drew Allen came in and started the first two games. He wasn’t great. Hunt was given the opportunity to start for SU in the third game of that 2013 season, and he produced. SU overcame an 0-2 start and finished the season at 7-6, winners of the Texas Bowl.
Last season was a bit of a disaster…Hunt punched someone in the first game, then was injured in the fifth game of the season. He didn’t play again, and SU stumbled to a 3-9 record, using basically every QB on the roster to little success.
But this year is Year 5 for Hunt at SU. Five years is a long time. This is his last shot. When Nassib was the quarterback at SU, he was reliable. You knew he’d get the job done. I believe Hunt can be that guy for SU this year.
Now, the Orange aren’t expected to be a major player in the ACC this year. But they have a chance to make a bowl.
Each of the three bowls Cuse has made in recent memory were relative surprises, and in each game the Orange was by no means favorites.
Now, I’m just an avid Orange watcher and not a certified scout, but I like what I’ve seen. Like when Hunt scored a last-minute TD in the Texas Bowl. Also: 19 completions, 74 rushing yards. Seems pretty clutch, like he can do it all.
SU needs that success to carry over into this season. If Hunt’s in good health, he can lead the squad back to a bowl game. Or at least respectability.
Cuse will be gritty. Hunt is talented. The hope is everyone meshes well together and the Orange bounces back this year.