After getting a big 34-3 win last Saturday in awful conditions against the North Carolina Tar Heels, the Virginia Tech Hokies head north to play inside the Carrier Dome against the Syracuse Orange. The Hokies know that all they need to do is to take care of business to set up the most meaningful game at Lane Stadium in years.
Syracuse will be looking to pull off the shocker while the Hokies can't afford to overlook to Orange so with that said, here's our predictions for the Hokies and Orange.
JW Gravley Prediction: #17 VT 60, Syracuse 14
This game should be an interesting look at a couple different things.
- How willing Fuente is to push the offense and see how well they perform
- How capable the defense is at stopping yet another dynamic passing attack
This game should be a shootout -- there isn't a doubt in my mind that points will be scored, and a lot of them. I am excited to see whether Fuente really opens the throttle this game and lets the offense feast against a very weak defense, or whether he holds back a little to keep players rested for a short week against Miami. The opportunity will be there for both of the options.
Bud Foster and his defense has shut down both East Carolina and North Carolina, and their respective passing attacks. Syracuse is a different beast though, running upwards of 80 or 90 plays a game -- they ran a crazy 105 plays against USF earlier this season. If Foster and his defensive unit can continue to play like they have the past few weeks, this could be a very large margin of victory for the Hokies.
I expect some nerves and sluggishness for the Hokies will make this a close game for the 1st quarter, but Tech will once again pull away against a weaker opponent.
Prediction: #17 Virginia Tech 54, Syracuse 20
Another week, another chance to get better, that's the cry from Coach Justin Fuente. I tend to agree with him as this week's opportunity comes against a familiar Big East foe from old. Virginia Tech travels this Saturday
to upstate New York to take on the Syracuse Orange in a game that from most accounts should not even be close.
This is what could be considered a trap game for the Hokies. They are coming off a statement win over UNC and with Miami looming next week, this is no time to get lazy. The Hokies will need to be sharp so they can keep the momentum going.
The offense and defense should be dominant in this game as Syracuse is behind the Hokies' talent level across the board. Even with Isaiah Ford being on a snap count, as he will surely be, the offense should be explosive. Look for Bucky Hodges and Cam Phillips to take advantage of this opportunity. Jerod Evans will also have a big game, further solidifying his place among the elite quarterbacks of the ACC.
Bud Foster's defense should be able to control the line of scrimmage, as well as the secondary. Syracuse is capable of putting up points on good defenses, just look at the Louisville game, however I think the lunchpail defense will want to keep their top 5 defensive ranking intact. Look for Ken Ekanam to continue to be a headache for opposing offensive lines, and get into the backfield early and often.
The Hokies take control early, and win this going away. 45-20 sounds about right for this tune up game for Miami. The main focus will be getting the win, and coming away with no injuries. As always Hokie fans LETS GO HOKIES.
Prediction: #17 Virginia Tech 45, Syracuse 20
The Virginia Tech Hokies and Syracuse Orange face off in a battle of two new ACC head coaches in very different situations with Justin Fuente having the favorites to win the ACC Coastal facing off Dino Babers and his rebuilding project at Syracuse. The Orange are still hunting for their first ACC win under Babers while the Hokies are looking to take care of business and shift their focus to Thursday's showdown with Miami at Lane Stadium.
The Hokies are the heavy favorites and deservingly so as they not only have the more experienced team but they also are the most talented all-around team compared to a young Syracuse team at the beginning of a rebuild. Virginia Tech can't afford though to overlook at Syracuse team that has some offensive playmakers that can make this game interesting if they're not careful.
However, this Virginia Tech team has proven that they can avoid overlooking opponents like Syracuse and I expect that the Hokies will be ready to come out and take care of business. Jerod Evans is poised for a big game against a poor Syracuse pass defense that doesn't get much help from a young defensive line that includes two true freshman starters at DE and two sophomores in the middle.
Meanwhile, Virginia Tech's defense will be tested some by a DIno Babers spread offense that will remind you of teams like Baylor but while Eric Dungey is a talented quarterback, Bud Foster will have a good game plan ready to slow them down while also having Ken Ekanem and the Virginia Tech front 7 getting plenty of pressure on Syracuse throughout the game.
Virginia Tech will comfortably take care of business and be ready for their showdown on Thursday against Miami in what will likely be the most meaningful game at Lane Stadium in years as long as Miami can take down North Carolina.
Prediction: #17 Virginia Tech 49, Syracuse 21