Syracuse QB Nassib not deterred by the turnovers
SYRACUSE, N.Y. (AP) — The numbers don't lie. Syracuse quarterback Ryan Nassib has thrived in the Orange's no-huddle attack. He's having a standout season throwing the ball and he has national attention for it.
But there have been mistakes — plenty of them — and the Orange are just 2-4 regardless of his statistics.
He knows something must change ... soon.
"This half of the season is going to make or break us," Nassib said as he prepared for Friday night's matchup against Connecticut (3-4, 0-2 Big East) in the Carrier Dome. "You can't do anything about the first half now."
After six games, Nassib is 162 of 250 with 11 touchdowns passing and eight interceptions. He ranks eighth nationally in completions per game (27) and passing yards per game (318.8), and is ninth in total offense (330.7 ypg). Last year, Nassib passed for 2,685 yards to set the school season mark and matched the school record for touchdown passes with 22. His passing yardage total at the midpoint of 2012 is just outside the top 10 all-time at Syracuse with six games still to play.
Nassib also has completed passes to 11 different receivers — Marcus Sales leads with 37 catches — and yet Syracuse (1-1 Big East) is two games below .500. And one of its wins came against Stony Brook, which plays at Division I's second level.
What has hurt most is that three of the Orange's four losses have been decided by a total of 16 points, victories that slipped away through lost fumbles, interceptions and a sputtering red-zone offense that has scored touchdowns on only 13 of 24 drives inside the opponent 20-yard line.
"I've definitely made some mistakes turnover-wise," said Nassib, who has lost two fumbles this season. "I've just got to try not to do too much, just get back to taking the easy plays and not try to force stuff."
Easier said than done in the fast-paced world he lives in on the field.
"It's tough," Nassib said. "One thing different about this year is we're putting the ball downfield more. You can see that from all the yards we're putting up. You can't put up yards like that if you don't make risky throws. That's something that I haven't done in the past.
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