Beat Writers split on predictions for Syracuse-North Carolina State matchup

first_imgComing off a near-upset over then-No. 25 Louisiana State, Syracuse (2-2) travels to North Carolina State (3-1) to take on the Wolfpack at 12:20 p.m. at Carter-Finley Stadium. Last season, N.C. State edged the Eric Dungey-less Orange, 35-20.Joe Bloss (3-1)Blow the house downSU 21, N.C. State 17Syracuse had its chances to beat LSU. If a few more tackles were made and a certain kickoff was booted into the back of the end zone, we might be talking about the greatest win of Babers’ era at SU. Those small details will go the Orange’s way this week, giving it a huge road win over the Wolfpack that will reverse the course of its season. The defense will cut out the big plays and score once to make the difference. Eric Dungey will complete close to 30 passes and Steve Ishmael will continue to dominate because short throws might be all SU can get. I didn’t drive for nearly 12 hours to see anything else.Sam Fortier (3-1)Pack a WallopN.C. State 31, Syracuse 28Dino Babers’ frustration at the podium in Baton Rouge, Louisiana, last week said it all. His team, he said, hadn’t known how close they’d come to pulling off the upset of a lifetime. The two or three plays per game separating Syracuse from a “moral victory” to one on the scoreboard showed up again, as they have so often in the past few years, save Virginia Tech in 2016. This week, Syracuse faces a team that did all the little things it needed in order to upset then-No. 12 Florida State. Until Syracuse exhibits a similar execution, it’s tough to give the Orange the benefit of the doubt.AdvertisementThis is placeholder textMatthew Gutierrez (3-1)No PackSyracuse 24, N.C. State 17The Wolfpack owns the 11th-best rushing defense in the country (92.3 yards per game), meaning the Syracuse offense rests entirely on Eric Dungey’s right arm. That’s not an issue, because he can chuck it and the SU defense is good enough to hold down the fort. Syracuse could use two wins — this weekend at NCSU and next against Pittsburgh — before No. 2 Clemson visits the Carrier Dome Oct. 13. Behind another strong defensive effort, SU sneaks past the Wolfpack on Saturday afternoon for a big road victory.Tomer Langer (3-1)Running on emptyN.C. State 30, SU 23Purely based on how the two teams match up, this is arguably a more difficult matchup for SU than last week’s tilt against LSU. As Dino Babers and company have raved all week, that front-seven is legit, and the Orange offensive line is still growing. Last year N.C. State dominated time of possession against Syracuse — it held the ball for more than 40 minutes — by moving methodically on offense and deploying it’s stellar pass rush. Now, Eric Dungey wasn’t available for that non-contest which is a huge factor. But we saw in Week 2 that the one way to slow him (and the offense) down is with a stellar pass rush. The Orange will compete, but N.C. State’s efficient offense led by quarterback Ryan Finley and it’s destructive front-seven, led by Bradley Chubb, will be too much for SU to handle. Comments Facebook Twitter Google+ Published on September 30, 2017 at 10:58 amlast_img

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