Here is a great post from CuseJacket. Disclaimer for those who did not see my intro in the Off Topic forum. I was born and raised in Syracuse. My dad had season tickets to Syracuse football and basketball games for almost 40 years, and as a result I went to games from the time I was 5 until age 18. My GT fandom didn't start until I enrolled in 2002. With my parents and brother coming to town this weekend wearing Orange, who will I be cheering for? GT, and it's not as close as I thought it'd be before the season started. 'Cuse Team Preview Season Recap (3-3 overall, wins over Wagner, Tulane, @ NC State, losses to Penn State, @ Northwestern, Clemson) Syracuse started the year with a transfer from Oklahoma as their starting QB (Drew Allen). Fans expected him to be the second coming. He was really bad. Odd mechanics, low delivery, lots of missed opportunities against Penn State and Northwestern. The offense was dysfunctional - think GT vs. VT or BYU kind of bad. Hence.... After the first two games they switched to a dual threat, RS-Soph QB - Terrell Hunt. He led the team as they outclassed Wagner (FCS Elon equivalent) and Tulane. Both of those teams were really bad.. it was tough to tell what they had in Hunt but he was the new second coming. After a bye Syracuse was overrun at home by Clemson. The game was over by halftime. There were a lot of breakdowns in the 'Cuse secondary as Clemson WRs were running unchallenged, WIDE open. It was the first time Hunt and the 'Cuse O were challenged by significantly better athletes, so many fans chalk this up to a learning experience that the team could overcome. Last week Syracuse won @ NC State. Syracuse was largely in control of this game throughout, but it wasn't decided until the 'Cuse O-Line wore out NC State and they broke off several long runs with their RBs. 'Cuse Offense Scheme - mainly spread and not much under center. They don't often throw the ball deep and were happy to dink and dunk against NC State. They throw maybe 4-5 bombs a game, but probably connect on 1 or 2 at most. Stats at this point are still misleading with the schedule they've played, change in QBs, and the change in offensive philosophy over the course of just 6 games. QB - Terrell Hunt, the current starting QB, is 6'3" 220lb. The parallels between him and Vad are interesting. Both are RS Sophs, and neither has found much consistency in the passing game. Neither has blazing fast speed but have enough to really make a defense nervous. The differences begin here - Hunt has pretty bad throwing mechanics. It doesn't look pretty (think Philip Rivers sidearm) and it also isn't very accurate beyond 10-15 yards. He will operate mostly out of the shotgun. He is INT prone against pressure. RBs - Despite not having quite as many RBs, Syracuse will probably have the best one on the field Saturday in Jerome Smith (6' 230lbs). Man he'd look good as a Bback. Prince Tyson-Gulley is the lightning to Smith's thunder, and he's better than your average scat back. Both need to be respected, and it needs to be GT's A1 priority to stop the running combo from Hunt, Smith, and PTG. WRs - Not great. There is probably a little more talent here overall than 'Cuse, but they are plagued by poor hands, route-running, and not many accurate balls from the QBs. TE - Beckett Wales is pretty good, but he's no Eric Ebron OLine - Average size and average unit. For the first time since our losing streak started, I think GT has the advantage on the line. We need to prove it. 'Cuse Defense Scheme - 4-3 and aggressive to the max. Lot of blitzing and trying to take advantage of their athleticism. They are big hitters. Think PJ Davis, Anthony Harrell, Jemea Thomas type of hitters across the board. I would be surprised if they don't light up a guy or two on GT. This year they have regressed a bit with last year's DC now Head Coach (Scott Shafer). DLine - Senior DT Jay Bromley will be the best tackle on the field (Gotsis may be catching up), but like all other positions may be neutralized facing our O for the first time. 'Cuse rotates a bunch of others but nothing noteworthy. LBs - Senior MLB Marquis Spruill will be the best LB on the field. I think he's started all 4 years at Syracuse. There is a falloff with the others and there doesn't appear to be a lot of depth, especially if Dyshawn Davis doesn't return after getting injured @ NC State. DBs - Weak. This is an athletic group, but their aggressive style and inability to cover can be exploited. No standouts and definitely the weakest part of the D. Other Notes 'Cuse is on their backup placekicker. The starter was out for the season only a couple games into the year. The backup has been pretty decent. Local connection - Two starters from Lawrenceville. Starting Junior OLB Cameron Lynch is from Brookwood High and starting RS Frosh KR George Morris III (3rd string RB) is from Central Gwinnett. These are two of the better recruits 'Cuse has signed in the last few years and two that fans are really high on. For some perspective though, neither received offers from GT. And here we are as GT takes on 'Cuse... GT Advantages - GT DL vs. Syracuse OL. GT's athleticism should take over. Syracuse's OL is undersized and not as athletic as the OLs we've faced the last three games. Granted our DL hasn't been overwhelming anyone, but I still see this as advantage GT and a game where we can break out. If there is one reason why I think the spread is so high in GT's favor, it's Syracuse's defensive style. Syracuse has to throw out everything that's made them successful on D the past several years. Their tendencies play right into our hands. We should be able to go to the bread and butter. Of course this is dependent on our own execution which of course has been lacking. 'Cuse Advantages Offensive backfield. The RBs are good. Generally speaking the O offense has hummed a little more consistently than GT. The O isn't as complex though. They haven't shot themselves in the foot quite as much either. If 'Cuse is smart and their OL can hold, then they should feed the RBs all game. For some reason though 'Cuse is one of those teams that doesn't just stick with what's working until sometimes it's too late. Momentum/confidence. Most 'Cuse fans will agree that the goal preseason was to make a bowl game. Well they are close to being on schedule and are coming off a confidence boosting win at NC State. I don't think I need to remind anyone here what our preseason goals were nor about the team's perceived mental state. Prediction 34-24 GT. I expect Hunt's inaccuracy will lead to at least one INT and enough punts. The X factor to me is simply GT's mindset going into this game. I really don't have a read, but that's a topic for another thread. So what is everyones thoughts this week?