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Before becoming the Syracuse head coach, and even before his ttime leading the Bowling Green program, Dino Babers saw a tremendous amount of success as a first time head coach in two seasons at Eastern Illinois.

In that first year at Eastern Illinois, Babers led the program to a 7-5 finish, including a 6-1 mark in the ultra-competitive Ohio Valley Conference. His team lost in the first round of the FCS Playoffs, and finished the season in the top 25, and the standard was set. The next season, EIU went 12-2 and lost in the FCS quarterfinals. Following that season, Bowling Green called, and Dino took his approach to the FCS ranks.

While at Eastern Illinois, Babers explained on ESPN radio in Syracuse that he learned a lot about what being a head coach is all about.

“You really don’t know what to do. There are fires everywhere, so I became a fireman and started putting out fires, and it has worked its way out. Once you’ve been out, and in the bush, and put out some fires, and you’ve got experience, you start to know which end to start at.”

Now at Syracuse, Babers has four years of head coaching experience under his belt (two at EIU and two at BG). How has that experience helped him?

“You know where to go in order to be the most successful and put the fire out right now. Now with the experience at Bowling Green and coming to Syracuse, it allows you to do it in a cleaner manner.”

Like firemen, experience is a great asset to all coaches, but especially to head coaches. Lots of people are looking forward to what that experience means for Babers in Syracuse.