They called it the Orange Out.
Many fans cooperated, my dear wife Karen and I knew as we were walking up the hill Saturday in preparation to watch Syracuse tangle with Wake Forest in the Atlantic Coast Conference football opener for both squads.
We planned a separate route from the opening Friday night, choosing the stairs that passed the castle-like Crouse College, home of the University’s music school.
Even though this was a 12:30 p.m. start, the overcast day was a good 20º F cooler than the week prior. This brightened our mood, walking in the 70s.
Hover over any gallery photo for a description. Click on the bottom right photo of any gallery for an enlarged slide show.
Yes, the Syracuse squad is known proudly as the Orange.
And so many of the fans in the announced crowd of 26,670 — the smallest home gathering since Sept. 24, 1983, or one month, nine days after I moved to Syracuse from Maryland, by the way — answered the call and wore the team color.
And, for the first time in too many seasons for most fans, so did the team. Three seasons ago, under the leadership of former athletic director Dr. Daryl Gross and stewardship of college uniform-maker and money-shaker Nike, Syracuse showed up in new-style blue jerseys. And gray jerseys. White jerseys, even. All which could be worn with pants of those colors. No orange jerseys, though. Nobody in charge really had a good answer as to why.
For game two of 2015, though, they followed the cannon-shot of smoke and ran from the dressing room tunnel all decked out in their orange jerseys, looking sharp and sweet.
All of which made me realize all over again how many shades of Orange really exist around our parts, even in the Carrier Dome.
There’s the vibrant hue taken to the field on the backs of the players.
There are the different brands of T’s and jerseys and pullovers found in the stands.
But, wait. Under the concourse lighting at halftime, even those take on a different perspective.
Not even the Syracuse bowl banners hanging from the top of the Carrier Dome completely match.
There was a certain appeal to this team regardless. Freshman quarterback Eric Dungey led a second-half surge for a 30-17 victory over the Deamon Deacons for a 2-0 record and 1-0 start in the ACC.
Which shade of orange do you prefer here? Would you wear orange anything? Which is your favorite photo, and why?