Coming off last week's high in the blowout at West Lafayette, Indiana against Purdue, Central Michigan (2-1) stumbled against the Syracuse Orange (2-0), falling 40-3 at home. In what can only be described optimistically as a set back, the Chippewas' Thomas Rawls was ruled out for the game due to a review of a personal issue, and Titus Davis was once again sidelined due to a knee injury suffered against Chattanooga in Week 1.
With two of Cooper Rush's offensive weapons out, the offense struggled to muster anything. It seemed the Orange defense was in the huddle with Rush all day. Rush went 17 for 31 and threw for 148 yards in the loss. Rush's prime target of the day was Jesse Kroll, who hauled in five receptions for 86 yards.
While the Chippewas started the scoring in the mid first quarter with a Brian Eavey 26 yard field goal, Syracuse responded with 40 unanswered points. First, Ryan Norton countered with a 23-yard field goal, then the Orange defense swarmed Rush, knocking the ball loose, and resulting in Marqez Hodge rumbling 36 yards for six points. Terrel Hunt added to the scoring in the second quarter with a four-yard pass to Brisly Estime for another touchdown before halftime.
The second half wasn't too kind to Central Michigan either, with Rush sacked for a safety just a few minutes in. Hunt then exploded to steal the show, rushing for not one, not two, but three touchdowns to close the game.
Terrel Hunt ended the day 20 for 30 with 175 yards and one passing touchdown as well as 13 carries for 92 yards and three rushing touchdowns. Adonis Ameen-Moore was the Orange's leading rusher though, running wild for 106 yards on only nine carries.
Central Michigan has many questions on offense and defense to answer and will look forward to next week's final non-conference matchup of the season against the Kansas Jayhawks in Lawrence, Kansas. Kickoff will be next Saturday at 3:30 pm.