Football

Running back coach Smith hopes Ameen-Moore can provide downhill running

Luke Rafferty | Staff Photographer

Adonis Ameen-Moore avoids a defender on the way to an 18-yard touchdown run against Temple in 2012. Syracuse's coaches hope Ameen-Moore can provide the physical, downhill running that Jerome Smith brought last year.

Jerome Smith left a void in the Syracuse backfield when he declared for the NFL Draft in December.

Smith’s downhill running style led to 1,171 yards as a sophomore and 914 a year ago. It’s not the kind of effort SU can just pull and replace, but senior Adonis Ameen-Moore will try to provide the Orange with some power running.

“Naturally you think Adonis will be that guy,” running backs coach DeAndre Smith said on Tuesday. “He’s a big physical kid, so I’m expecting him to be that guy and take that role.”

Ameen-Moore has 47 carries in his SU career, the most coming in the 2012–13 season. He was a part of Doug Marrone’s “tank package” that year, and ran 30 times for 108 yards and five touchdowns.

And after getting just five touches in 2013–14 — Smith had 200, Prince-Tyson Gulley had 83, George Morris II 79 and Devante McFarlane 48 — there’s a chance Ameen-Moore will step into a very important role.

“(Ameen-Moore) looks quicker and more agile out there,” SU head coach Scott Shafer said on Tuesday. “He’s doing a real nice job.”

Gulley is starting his fifth training camp with the Orange and Morris and McFarlane showed flashes of potential as a redshirt freshmen last season.

Syracuse brings out full pads

At the onset of training camp, first-year offensive line coach Joe Adam set a simple goal. He wanted his unit to have a physical camp. That plan started to take shape Tuesday.

Syracuse put on full pads for the first time and it made Adam hungry for what’s to come.

“I’ve been very pleased with the pads so far,” he said. “I can’t wait to get into live scrimmage and all those different things so I can see a lot of the components we’ve been working on technique-wise come to fruition.”

As for the rest of the team, Shafer detailed some of the adjustments the players that come with pads — which doesn’t amount to much. He said the quarterbacks now have less flexibility than they did in the first few days and that there’s “a little bit of an adjustment period” for everyone.

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