A Syracuse team that may have been optimistic after a two-game winning streak that included a 31-17 upset of Virginia Tech returned to earth on Saturday in a 54-0 loss to Clemson.
The game may have cost SU more than a win as starting quarterback Eric Dungey left early with an injury.
Despite losing Heisman Trophy candidate quarterback Deshaun Watson, No. 3 ranked Clemson humbled the Orange generating 565 yards of total offense in Death Valley.
Watson didn’t exit the game without leaving his mark, however.
Despite the abbreviated time on the field, Watson passed for two touchdowns, and rushed for one more.
He finished with 169 yards on 13 of 16 passing, and rushed for 39 more.
Clemson backup Nick Schuessler was also effective in relief, passing for 177 yards and two touchdowns.
The lone highlight for SU was Amba Etta-Tawo, who set a single-season receiving yards record during the game.
The Biletnikoff Award candidate recorded 84 yards on nine catches.
The seriousness of Dungey’s injury is uncertain.
Syracuse University coach Dino Babers declined to confirm whether Dungey suffered a concussion or not, saying he was hit in the head, neck, and shoulder area.
The Orange fell to 2-3 in ACC play, and 4-5 overall.
The Tigers improved to 6-0 in the conference and 9-0 overall.
SU returns to the field next Saturday when NC State visits the Carrier Dome.
Kickoff is set for 12:30 p.m.