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Syracuse vs. Clemson: Crystal Ball Predictions

Brad (5-0): Clemson 62, Syracuse 17

I want to be bold here, but I’m not willing to risk my perfect record. This team is easy to predict because their downfalls are predictable. The run defense is historically bad. Last week Syracuse made Liberty’s Shedro Louis look like Jim Brown with 170 yards on the ground. As a team, the Flames went for 338 rushing yards. There is no way SU stops Clemson’s Travis Etienne, who might be the best running back in the country. The only variable here is the amount of time the Tiger starters will play.

Ian (4-1): Clemson 58, Syracuse 13

This game is over before it even starts. Clemson hasn’t lost at home in four years. SU is outmatched at every position on the field and is outcoached by the best defensive coordinator in the country. The Tiger walk-ons are probably going to be playing by the third quarter. However, keep an eye out for Dillon Markiewicz or JaCobian Morgan in garbage time. Either freshman QB could lead a fourth quarter drive for a field goal, and an extremely late backdoor cover.

Matt (4-1): Clemson 56, Syracuse 3

It’s going to be ugly folks. The silver lining? Travis Etienne might break both the all time ACC rushing record, and against this run defense, maybe the single game rush record too. So at least there’s some history to witness. All Orange fans can hope for is the team to stay healthy.

Jaron (3-2): Clemson 66, Syracuse 10

Trevor Lawrence and Travis Etienne. That’s it. That’s my argument.

John (3-2): Clemson 52, Syracuse 13

I like Syracuse to get a backdoor cover here against the 46 point spread. Okay now that the serious business is out of the way. I think we all know how high the odds are stacked against Syracuse this weekend. I just want to see a football team that doesn’t quit and plays hard for the entire 60 minutes. Can Sterlin Gilbert and Dino Babers put together a nice methodical offense and get some first downs? Can Tony White have the secondary in a position to get turnovers? How will this SU team play when everyone outside the program knows they have no chance? I can’t wait to find out, hopefully the Orange can keep it respectable. 

Harrison (3-2): Clemson 56, Syracuse 10

There’s no way around it… this one could be a painful one for the Orange, and chances are it will be. Statistically towards the bottom of the nation, SU stumbles into Death Valley behind its back-up quarterback, and without its best defense player – both creating a mere recipe for disaster. Clemson is very likely the best team in the entire country and showed it last week, beating Georgia Tech, 73-7. The Orange beat Georgia Tech earlier this season, so it must fair better than THAT on Saturday, right?

Gill (2-3): Clemson 56, Syracuse 6

Do you know what would make this game interesting? If Clemson was not allowed to pass the football. Sign me up for that. Could the Tigers beat the Orange, if they were only allowed to run the ball? As offensive as that question is from Syracuse’s perspective, it is also a compliment to Clemson. Running back Travis Ettienne is doing mind-boggling things in college, and I have a feeling he’ll do the same in the NFL, where he’s expected to be a high draft pick. He’s had more games with a touchdown than any other player in college football history (40). He’s averaging over seven yards per carry IN HIS CAREER. Is all caps proper AP Style? I don’t care. Etienne versus Syracuse might be interesting, Clemson versus Syracuse will not be.

Thomas (2-3): Clemson 56, Syracuse 13

Well, Syracuse covers down in Death Valley, but only because Tigers head coach Dabo Swinney plugs in the subs early. Syracuse has no answer for Trevor Lawrence, who will be the number one pick in the NFL Draft barring a major shock. SU is also missing two of its most important secondary players – Andre Cisco and Eric Coley. Instead, Dino Babers has been forced to play freshman Rob Hanna and Ja’Had Carter. Neither are prepared to play ACC competition, much less the top team in the country. Besides Lawrence, Clemson also boasts the best running back in college football in Travis Etienne. So far, Etienne’s averaging almost seven yards per carry, and will likely break 500 yards on the season against SU. The Orange have been thrashed by the running game all season long, and SU’s facing its toughest test of the season on Saturday.

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The Fizz is owned, edited and operated by Damon Amendolara. D.A. is an ’01 Syracuse graduate from the Newhouse School with a degree in Broadcast Journalism.

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