Syracuse, NY, United States (4E Sports) – Ryan Nassib’s three touchdown passes helped Syracuse deal No. 11 Louisville its first loss with a 45-26 victory Saturday before 40,312 spectators at Carrier Dome.
Nassib completed 15 of 23 passes for 246 yards to become the school’s all-time passing leader, overtaking Marvin Graves, and lead the Orange to their first win over a ranked team since beating No. 11 West Virginia, 49-23, in 2011.
Also, Nassib’s 15 completed passes vaulted him as the Big East’s all-time leader in completions, eclipsing the record of 735 set by Rutgers’ Ryan Hart.
Prince-Tyson Gulley rushed for two touchdowns while fellow rusher Jerome Smith tallied 144 yards on 18 carries and a touchdown for his fourth consecutive game with over 100-yards rushing for the Orange (5-5, 3-3 Big East).
Wide receiver Alec Lemon had 176 yards on nine receptions and two touchdowns, raising his career touchdown receptions to 16, while the defense was spearheaded by Shamarko Thomas, who had six solo tackles.
Teddy Bridgewater went 36-for-49 for 424 yards and three touchdowns for the Cardinals (9-1, 4-1 Big East), who were limited to just 48 rushing yards on 19 carries.
The Orange opened the first quarter with a nine-play, 78-yard attack that ended with Ross Krautman’s 20-yard field goal that put them ahead by 3-0.
The Cardinals tied the count at three when John Wallace kicked a 37-yard field goal that capped a 12-play, 55 yard drive.
Syracuse then recovered a fumble on a punt return on the Cardinals’ 24-yard line, resulting to an eight-yard rushing touchdown by Gulley for a 10-3 advantage but Bridgewater found Corvin Lamb for a 53-yard touchdown to tie the count anew.
In the second quarter, the Orange scored three unanswered touchdowns – two from Nassib’s scoring heaves to Lemon – to take a commanding 31-10 lead before
Wallace ended the first half with a 37-yard field goal.
Syracuse padded its lead to 38-13 after a 35-yard touchdown run by Smith but Louisville countered with a touchdown with 1:49 left in the third quarter.
Nassib opened the fourth period with a three-yard touchdown pass to Lewellyn Coker for his first career touchdown.
The Cardinals cut the deficit to 45-26 when Bridgewater found DeVante Parker for an eight-yard touchdown pass.