Go ahead, fire away. I'm ready for it. But I'm picking Syracuse to beat Pittsburgh on Saturday afternoon at the Carrier Dome. Not cover the spread, (but as a 16-point underdog they'll do that to), but win the game outright.
I know it makes little sense. This Syracuse team is awful. I agree, I've got them #118 based on performance up until now. (Idaho and North Texas if you were wondering). Still, I really think Saturday will be a good performance, and I think it will be this year's big win.
1) First off, Pitt is not that good. Dave Wannstedt told me as much this spring. He told me Syracuse was good, I told them we stunk, and he told me that Pitt can't take anybody for granted right now. About that, I think he is right. And I think they just might. After a big home win against Iowa, and a Thursday night road trip to Tampa on their minds, the focus might not be enough on the Orange.
2) The Pitt offense is the type of offense that Syracuse usually does a fairly good job in containing. Even last year, when Lesean McCoy was racking up big offensive numbers, the Syracuse defense held him in check. He got his yards, but it took lots of carries. I think we might see much of the same in a more pro-style offense this weekend.
3) Therefore, it might be forced upon the Pitt Quarterback and receivers to make some plays. I think our defensive backs, which seem to be getting healthier, have the ability to match up with this unit. Stull is a decent quarterback, but he's not the type that you fear is going to beat you. I think Syracuse will try to put him that position, by blitzing and trying to take away the run.
4) Our offense has been getting better and better. The offensive line looks like a cohesive unit for the first time since P was fired and all of that should make a difference. I think we'll be able to garner enough yards on the ground and be efficient enough in the air to score some points.
5) All this stuff in the media this week hasn't really been about how bad this team is. It's been about the AD and the coach, and the team has gotten a little bit of a slide. I think that helps them.
So go ahead, tell me I'm crazy, tell me we have no chance. I disagree. And I think we win the football game. 21-16 Orange.
Go enjoy it. And Go Orange!