Syracuse released its depth chart for Week 2 on Monday, and if things hold true, then true freshman Eric Dungey will be making the first start of his young career. Dungey was more than solid in a 47-0 win over Rhode Island, completing 10-of-17 passes for 114 yards and a pair of touchdowns.
Then again, Syracuse was playing against an inferior FCS opponent. The competition will become better immediately, as SU hosts conference foe Wake Forest on Saturday.
How will Dungey do in his first start? I looked back at the last five quarterbacks in their first starts to make an educated guess. The results were mixed.
|Austin Wilson||11/8/14||Duke||11/19||167||0||2||L, 27-10|
|AJ Long||10/11/14||FSU||16/27||68||2||2||L, 38-20|
|Terrel Hunt||9/21/13||Tulane||16/21||181||4||0||W, 52-17|
|Drew Allen||8/31/13||Penn State||16/37||189||0||2||L, 23-17|
|Ryan Nassib||9/4/10||Akron||17/27||229||2||1||W, 29-3|
If you were to average out all five of those players, this is what it would come out to for Dungey:
|Eric Dungey||9/12/15||Wake Forest||15.2/26.2||166.8||1.6||1.4||?|
Would most Syracuse fans take a 15/25, 170 yard day with two touchdowns and an interception (I’m rounding up here)? I’d say yes.
But that is probably the glass half-full approach to the predictor. Nassib and Hunt both had their first starts against non-Power 5 opponents. Even though Syracuse enters as a 5.5 point favorite against the Deacons, Wake Forest is still an ACC team.
So if you eliminate Hunt and Nassib and just average out Allen, Long and Wilson you get…
|Eric Dungey||9/12/15||Wake Forest||14.3/27.6||141.3||0.6||2||?|
The main difference in facing a Power 5 team is obviously one less touchdown and a little more than half an interception a game. One factor to consider in favor of Dungey is that this won’t be the first game he’s appeared in, like Hunt, who enjoyed the best debut of the five.
Another factor working in favor of Dungey is that aside from Wilson, no one had a particularly bad debut.
Would most Syracuse fans take a 14/28, 140 yard day with zero touchdowns and two interceptions? It wouldn’t be the worst thing in the world, but seeing as Wake Forest is a critical game for Syracuse’s bowl hopes, I’m sure most of us are wishing for more.