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Dino Babers Discusses End of First Half Blunder vs Virginia Tech

Syracuse missed on a golden opportunity to put points on the board before halftime.

While Syracuse knocked off Virginia Tech 41-36 on Saturday, the Orange had a major blunder at the end of the first half that almost came back to haunt them. Trailing 19-13, a Garrett Shrader scramble set Syracuse up with a first and goal at the Hokies' one yard line with eight seconds left in the half. Syracuse called timeout to stop the clock and set up a play to get the ball in the end zone. 

When the Orange ran onto the field, however, there was some confusion regarding personnel. That led to Syracuse calling a second timeout without running a play, its last of the half. After an incomplete pass and Virginia Tech timeout, Syracuse elected to kick a short 18 yard field goal. Andre Szmyt's kick bounced off the upright and Syracuse was held scoreless on the possession. 

During his weekly press conference, Babers was asked about that situation. 

"Here's the deal," Babers said. "I'm going to look at the cup being half full. I look at that situation and it was not clean, obviously. The second timeout was to clean it up. Because we had an opportunity to do something that would have been really, really good. After that, we came to a situation where we wanted to kick a field goal and the field goal was no good. I think that there were some mishaps. There were some miscommunications, obviously, and that's the reason why I went with the second timeout. 

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"I still think that those same individuals and coaches that weren't so good on those two plays, the last five minutes and 25 seconds was unbelievable. On the way they communicated, and the way they got things done to get those two touchdowns. Not to take away from the defensive stop in between, which could have been extremely second guessed if we never got the ball back, and to be able to use all the timeouts on defense and still be able to execute that one minute drive with no timeouts. There's good and there's bad, I think there was more good than bad. We're going to celebrate the good and we're going to work doggone hard on the bad."