GAMEDAY College Football

Syracuse 31, Louisville 7

AP Sports Writer

SYRACUSE, N.Y. - Sean Tucker rushed for 98 yards and scored two touchdowns, one on a 55-yard catch-and-run, and quarterback Garrett Shrader threw for two scores and ran for another as Syracuse beat Louisville 31-7.

Louisville had won the past three meetings in the series - all at Cardinal Stadium, -averaging 42.3 points, and was 7-1 against the Orange since joining the Atlantic Coast Conference in 2014.

The script was flipped in this one as Syracuse built an early 17-7 lead behind a new-look offense, and the Orange defense never let Louisville quarterback Malik Cunningham get rolling. He was intercepted twice in the third quarter and lost a fumble early in the fourth, and the Orange converted two of the turnovers into touchdowns. Last year, he accounted for six touchdowns against Syracuse in the first half of a 41-3 victory.

Shrader finished 18 of 25 for 237 yards passing and gained 95 yards rushing on 16 carries.

Cunningham finished 16 of 22 for 152 yards passing, rushed for 34 yards on 13 carries, and was sacked three times.

Syracuse finished 5-7 last year and closed the season with three straight lopsided losses to miss the postseason. That led to an overhaul of the staff. The architects of Virginia's potent offense - offensive coordinator Robert Anae and quarterbacks coach Jason Beck - were hired in the offseason to jumpstart the offense and their imprint showed up right away in this one.

Shrader completed 7 of 8 passes for 117 yards and one touchdown in the first quarter - the biggest play the 55-yard catch-and-run by Tucker down the right side for a 10-0 lead after Andre Szmyt had given Syracuse an early lead with a 31-yard field goal.

The Cardinals got untracked briefly late in the period on a 36-yard touchdown run by Tiyon Evans, a transfer from Tennessee, but the Orange came right back. Shrader gained 24 yards on a third-and-14 play and another run netted 10 yards. He then hit Devaughn Cooper over the middle for 15 more to set up Tucker's 4-yard touchdown run.

Louisville then stunned the Orange with a little razzle-dazzle as wide receiver Braden Smith took a handoff and hit Tyler Hudson for 45 yards to the Syracuse 4. But Cunningham was stopped twice on runs and the Orange took over on downs at their own 2.

Cunningham's 45-yard pass to Ahmari Huggins-Bruce put the Cardinals in Syracuse territory late in the third quarter, but Orange cornerback Garrett Williams intercepted Cunningham's pass at the back of the end zone to end the threat.

The Orange defense struck again on Louisville's next possession, with linebacker Derek McDonald picking off a Cunningham pass over the middle and returning it 30 yards to set up Shrader's 8-yard TD pass to Oronde Gadsden II.

Orange defensive lineman Steve Linton forced a Cunningham fumble in the fourth and Shrader scored on a 6-yard run midway through the period for a 31-7 lead.

Syracuse fullback Chris Elmore, who returned for his sixth year, was injured in the first quarter and helped off the field. He did not return.


Louisville offensive tackle Renato Brown was ejected for targeting Syracuse linebacker Stefon Thompson in the second quarter.


Syracuse was called for five false starts in the first half and had 18 penalties for 107 yards.


Louisville: Coach Scott Satterfield was optimistic coming into the season with 17 starters back, including 10 from a defense that registered 33 sacks and intercepted 10 passes last season. The Cardinals sacked Shrader twice but registered zero turnovers. Cunningham played a huge role on offense last year, throwing for 2,841 of his 3,872 yards from scrimmage and rushing for 20 of his 39 touchdowns. He has to recapture that magic touch.

Syracuse: Louisville was the only team to hold the Orange without a touchdown last season and this win was an important start to the season. It's something the team can build on with a road game looming and four straight home games after that.

Scoring Summary
First Quarter LouSyr
Syr FG 9:46 Andre Szmyt 31 yard field goal 0 3
Syr TD 5:01 Sean Tucker 55 yard TD pass from Garrett Shrader (Andre Szmyt Extra Point) 0 10
Lou TD 1:10 Tiyon Evans 37 yard TD run (James Turner Extra Point) 7 10
Second Quarter LouSyr
Syr TD 10:25 Sean Tucker 4 yard TD run (Andre Szmyt Extra Point) 7 17
Fourth Quarter LouSyr
Syr TD 13:02 Oronde Gadsden II 8 yard TD pass from Garrett Shrader (Andre Szmyt Extra Point) 7 24
Syr TD 8:40 Garrett Shrader 6 yard TD run (Andre Szmyt Extra Point) 7 31
Team Stats
  Louisville Syracuse
First downs 15 23
  Rushing 7 13
  Passing 8 9
  Penalty 0 1
3rd Down Efficiency 5-11, 45% 6-11, 55%
4th down efficiency 0-2, 0% 0-0, -%
Rushes-Yards 31-137 40-207
Passing Yards 197 242
Return Yards 110 51
Completions-Attempts-Int 17-23-2 19-26-0
Sacks-Yards Lost 3-13 2-9
Punts 3 3
Fumbles Lost 2-1 0-0
Penalties - Yards 7-46 18-107
Louisville Passing
Player Cmp Att Yds TDs Int
M. Cunningham 16 22 152 0 2
B. Smith 1 1 45 0 0
Syracuse Passing
Player Cmp Att Yds TDs Int
G. Shrader 18 25 237 2 0
C. Del Rio-Wilson 1 1 5 0 0
Louisville Rushing
Player Carries Yds Avg TDs
T. Evans 13 89 6.8 1
M. Cunningham 13 34 2.6 0
J. Jordan 4 11 2.8 0
J. Mitchell 1 3 3.0 0
Syracuse Rushing
Player Carries Yds Avg TDs
S. Tucker 21 98 4.7 1
G. Shrader 16 95 5.9 1
L. Allen 3 14 4.7 0
Louisville Receiving
Player Rec Yds Avg TDs
T. Hudson 8 102 12.8 0
A. Huggins-Bruce 2 57 28.5 0
M. Ford 2 12 6.0 0
J. Jordan 1 11 11.0 0
I. Martin 1 10 10.0 0
D. Wiggins 1 3 3.0 0
T. Evans 2 2 1.0 0
Syracuse Receiving
Player Rec Yds Avg TDs
S. Tucker 6 85 14.2 1
D. Cooper 4 60 15.0 0
O. Gadsden II 3 36 12.0 1
C. Jackson 2 35 17.5 0
M. Mang 1 25 25.0 0
L. Allen 2 2 1.0 0
T. Pena 1 -1 -1.0 0
Louisville Interceptions
Player Int Yards
Syracuse Interceptions
Player Int Yards
D. McDonald 1 30
G. Williams 1 0
Louisville Punting
Player Punts Yards Avg
M. Vassett 3 137 45.7
Syracuse Punting
Player Punts Yards Avg
M. Von Marburg 3 124 41.3
Louisville Punt Returns
Player Ret Yards Average
B. Smith 1 -1 -1.0
Syracuse Punt Returns
Player Ret Yards Average
T. Pena 2 21 10.5
Louisville Kick Returns
Player Ret Yards Average
J. Jordan 5 111 22.2
Syracuse Kick Returns
Player Ret Yards Average
Louisville Missed FG
Player Length
Syracuse Missed FG
Player Length