Oct. 8, 2011
Syracuse 37, Tulane 34
Tulane Game 6
New Orleans, La.
Saturday's game marked the eighth meeting between Tulane and Syracuse on the gridiron. With the loss, the Green Wave fall to 1-7 in the all-time series and have now dropped five straight to the Orange.
With the loss, Tulane falls to 2-4 on the year. It marks the eighth consecutive season the Green Wave stand at 2-4 after six games. The last time Tulane had more than two wins after six games was back in 2003 when the Wave started 3-3 en route to a 5-7 finish under then-head coach Chris Scelfo.
The Green Wave offense threw for a season-best 355 yards, marking the first time Tulane surpassed the 300-yard mark since passing for 370 in last year's season finale at Marshall on Nov. 27, 2010.
Junior quarterback Ryan Griffin finished the day 24-of-30 for 320 yards and two touchdowns. His completions and yards were both season highs. Griffin completed 15 straight passes from midway through the second quarter until the 13:28 mark of the final stanza.
Griffin's 320-yard passing game was the third 300-yard game of his career and his first of the 2011 season. He now stands alone in seventh place in Tulane history in 300-yard passing games, one behind sixth-place Deron Smith who had four from 1987-90.
Freshman wide receiver Xavier Rush entered tonight's game against Syracuse with one catch for nine yards this season, but posted career highs with four receptions for 135 yards and two touchdowns. Rush becomes the first Tulane receiver to surpass the 100-yard mark since Ryan Grant had 140 vs. Rice on Nov. 13, 2010.
Junior middle linebacker Trent Mackey once again led the Green Wave defense and posted a career high with 18 tackles (16 solo, 2 assists). His previous career-best tackle performance was 17 (10 solo, 7 assists) vs Army on Oct. 9, 2010. Mackey now has 73 tackles (47 solo, 26 assists) for the season. He now has 12 career double-digit tackle games, including four this season.
Junior linebacker Darryl Farley also posted a season-high in tackles with 12 stops (7 solo, 5 assists) against the Orange. It was the first time Farley hit double-digits in his collegiate career. His previous career high was nine (2 solo, 7 assists) at Houston on Sept. 25, 2010.
Freshman kick returner Robert Kelley finished the day with three returns for 84 yards, including a game-best 43-yarder. For the season, he has now returned 33 kickoffs for 664 yards. His yardage total through six games already stands eighth in Tulane's single-season record book and is just 374 away from record holder Jeff Liggon's 1,038 (on 44 returns) in 1994. In addition, his 30 returns ranks tied for seventh in Tulane single-season history, sharing a mark held by Ade Tuyo in 2007. Liggon holds the record with 44 during his record-setting return yardage season.
Freshman linebacker Matthew Bailey posted his first career sack with two minutes to play in first quarter.
Sophomore running back Orleans Darkwa's two rushing touchdowns against Syracuse gives him 17 for his career. He is now tied for 10th in Tulane history along with André Anderson (2006-09), Marvin Christian (1977-79) and Ronny Quillian (1955-56).
Sophomore placekicker Cairo Santos' 49-yard field goal with 4:13 left to play in the third quarter tied his career long. Santos also nailed a 49-yarder at Duke on Sept. 24 at Wallace Wade Stadium. Ironically, that kick also came in the third quarter.
Junior tight end Stephen Suchy recorded the first multiple-catch game of his career on Saturday against Syracuse, hauling in two passes for 48 yards.
Tulane's eight-play, 80-yard touchdown drive to open the game marked the third time in six games this season the Green Wave scored on their opening possession. Tulane kicked a field goal in the season opener against Southeastern Louisiana and hit paydirt last week at Army.
Four Tulane players extended their double-digit starting streaks on Saturday vs. Syracuse: junior defensive end Austen Jacks (18), junior middle linebacker Trent Mackey (18), junior safety Shakiel Smith (18) and junior cornerback Ryan Travis. In addition, senior offensive guard Emmanuel Aluko pushed his consecutive starts streak to double digits at 10.
Sophomore wide receiver Brett Comardelle made his season debut on Saturday, entering the game with the punt-return unit with 7:18 left to play in the first half.
Redshirt-freshman linebacker Kerchal Byrd made his collegiate debut on Saturday, seeing time on the Green Wave's kickoff coverage unit against the Orange.