FB : Brinkley kept under wraps in final game
CINCINNATI – Curtis Brinkley made his intentions obvious. The senior tailback wasn’t going to waste any time dissecting Syracuse’s 30-10 loss to Cincinnati Saturday, his last game as a college football player.
‘I’m not talking about the game,’ Brinkley said.
There wasn’t a whole lot to talk about, at least about Brinkley’s performance – he had little say in the outcome of Saturday’s contest. Junior quarterback Cameron Dantley’s scuffles allowed Cincinnati to key on Brinkley. His longest rush was 10 yards.
Brinkley finished with 60 yards on 16 carries, a good chunk of those yards coming long after the game had been decided. He finished the season with 1,164 yards, good for fifth on the Orange’s single-season list.
Despite sputtering through his final two games (he had 44 yards in SU’s upset of Notre Dame last week), 2008 was still a breakout season for Brinkley, who had been riddled with injuries most of his first three seasons at Syracuse. At one point, he ran for over 100 yards in five straight games, an SU single-season record.
While he wouldn’t talk about his last game, Brinkley did have a message for the SU faithful.
‘I just want to tell everybody in Syracuse that I gave 100 percent in all my four years,’ Brinkley said, ‘And it’s just unfortunate that we haven’t had a winning season in four years.
‘Just that it’s been a pleasure playing here in the city with the fans, and I’m just going to try to make it to the next level and make a name for myself and for my hometown and for Syracuse as well.’
Brinkley’s last game, of course, coincided with Greg Robinson’s farewell as Syracuse head coach. The two had a tenuous relationship early in their time at Syracuse, but grew closer as the years wore on.
‘Me and Coach Robinson, our relationship go above and beyond together,’ Brinkley said. ‘He going to go where he’s going, and hopefully we stay in contact. I’m just happy I got the chance to play for Coach Robinson.’
Jones mulls future
Saturday’s game may have also been Art Jones’ last in a Syracuse uniform. The junior defensive tackle has emerged as the Orange’s best NFL prospect, and many have speculated Jones will forego his senior season to enter the NFL Draft.
Jones said Saturday afternoon that he hadn’t thought about his future plans.
‘I really don’t know,’ Jones said. ‘Once I talk to the coach we’ll talk and we’ll figure things out.’
The 6-foot-4, 291-pound tackle beefed up his NFL profile two weeks ago at Notre Dame, when he racked up 15 tackles, four tackles for loss and 1.5 sacks.
Jones wasn’t nearly as dominant Saturday. He finished with six tackles, bringing his season total to 60. He also finished the season with 13 tackles for loss and 3.5 sacks.
Holmes on the spot
Sophomore cornerback Mike Holmes provided the highlight of the game for Syracuse with a circus interception in the third quarter.
With SU down, 20-3, Cincinnati quarterback Tony Pike lobbed a deep ball down the left sideline. Cornerback Kevyn Scott made the initial deflection of the ball, hitting it up in the air as he fell. Senior safety A.J. Brown tried to grab the ball as he tumbled toward the ground, but instead batted it up in the air again for Holmes, who swooped in to make the pick at the SU 5-yard line.
‘I saw Kevyn hit it up, and I was running over the help,’ Holmes said. ‘Then I thought A.J. was going to make the interception, but he ended up hitting it up and I just caught it and got two feet in bounds.’
Holmes also had a fumble recovery Saturday, scooping up a loose ball in the third quarter. He earned a spot on the Big East honor roll for his performance.
This and that
Senior Pat Shadle was 1-for-1 on field goal attempts Saturday, ending his career as the most accurate kicker in Syracuse history. He finished his career 40-for-50 on field goal attempts, and 14-for-17 this year. … Senior fullback Tony Fiammetta’s 58-yard run in the second quarter was the longest of his career. It set up a Syracuse field goal. … Sophomore Anthony Perkins made his first career start at defensive end, starting in place of fellow sophomore Jared Kimmel.
Thomas Wolfe is leaving his position as senior vice president and dean of student affairs to become the new president of Iliff School of Theology… Read more »
UPDATED: MAY 15, 4:35 p.m. Syracuse University students will soon see new living options in downtown Syracuse, after a new construction company revamps a vacant… Read more »
THEY'RE BACK: Syracuse pulls off furious comeback win against Yale to return to final four after longest absence since 1979
COLLEGE PARK, Md. — Brian Megill sprinted over to Dominic Lamolinara and catapulted into his arms. The game was over. The unthinkable was no longer… Read more »