Halftime Thoughts: Northwestern football versus Syracuse

WNUR’s Jim Sannes (@JimSannes) gives his thoughts from the first half of today’s game between the Northwestern Wildcats and the Syracuse Orange. At the half, Northwestern leads 34-7.

So, obviously, things went well for the ‘Cats in the first half. Looking at the numbers, a few big things stick out:

  • Tony Jones has already set career highs in receptions (7) and yards (131). This is the first 100-yard game by a Northwestern wide receiver since Jeremy Ebert’s 208 yards against Rice. Jones has nearly doubled his previous high in yards of 70, set last week against Cal.
  • Trevor Siemian and Kain Colter are a combined 22-24 for 277 yards and and 3 TD’s. Siemian was surgical in the second quarter, especially on the last drive, highlighted by a long pass along the sidelines to his high school teammate Rashad Lawrence to set up the Christian Jones five-yard touchdown.
  • The running game was stagnant the first 22 minutes but picked up considerably (largely in thanks to Colter) mid-way through the second. Colter finished with six carries for 67 yards and a touchdown. I think he’s okay.
  • Don’t be shocked if Stephen Buckley gets heavily involved in the second half. With a large lead, the ‘Cats could try to get the redshirt freshman, who had three touches in the first quarter, some experience in Mark’s absence.
  • Those defensive ends are damn good. Three more deflected passes, a strip sack by Tyler Scott, and plenty of good pass rush. With the defensive tackles struggling to get a push, the ‘Cats need these four to keep doing work.
  • No turnovers by the offense, but two created by the defense. Traveon Henry and Chi Chi Ariguzo both made pretty catches to intercept Drew Allen, making this the fifth consecutive game the ‘Cats have had multiple interceptions.

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