“It is a true honor to have been selected to lead Syracuse University football, a program steeped in rich tradition, excellence, and success, both on and off the field,” said Babers. “There were many coaching opportunities out there but none more attractive or exciting than this one. I’ve always admired Syracuse Football’s scrappy demeanor, grit, and winning mentality, but what attracted me to this position even more is the University’s intense focus on preparing its student-athletes for a lifetime of success.
“This is an incredible opportunity and one I am thrilled to have been offered.”
The Falcons played in the Mid-American Conference Championship game both years that he was at the school. The 54-year-old was 18-9 over his two years, including a 10-3 record this season.
He’ll be the Orange’s first African-American head coach. He also replaces Scott Shafer, who was fired on November 23rd, as Syracuse went 4-8 this season.
Babers had to pay a $200,000 buyout to Bowling Green to terminate his contract. It wouldn’t be surprising if the Orange reimbursed him, like other schools have with their new head coaches this off-season.
He has been a head coach for just four-years. Besides being the Bowling Green head coach for the past two seasons, he was also the Eastern Illinois Panthers for two seasons in 2012 and 2013.
He’ll bring his uptempo offense – similar to the Baylor Bears offense – to the Carrier Dome. His offense also has pro-style principles.
“We wanted a leader who had a proven track record and a strong commitment to student welfare,” Syracuse’s director of athletics Mark Coyle said. “Dino’s background as a former student-athlete combined with his head coaching experience, and dynamic offensive mind make him a great fit for our program. We are committed to building a winning Syracuse Football program and today reinforces that commitment.”
This season, the Falcons offense was fourth in the national in total offense, as they average 561 yards per game. The Orange averaged just 319 yards per game.
Syracuse wasn’t the only job interested in hiring Babers. He was reportedly a candidate for the Central Florida Knights head coaching job before the school hired Oregon Ducks offensive coordinator Scott Frost.
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