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Syracuse 37 … at Tulane 34

CollegeFootballNews.com
Posted Oct 8, 2011


Week 6 CFN Fearless Prediction & Game Story - Syracuse at Tulane


2011 Predictions & Game Story 

Week 6 - Syracuse at Tulane

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Oct. 8 Syracuse 37 … at Tulane 34
CFN Analysis: Can the Orange ever play better than its competition? Rutgers is playing extremely well, and the Orange lost in OT last week, managed to beat a red-hot Wake Forest in the opener needed a big break to beat Toledo and a last second field goal to beat Tulane. Outside of the loss to USC, every SU came couldn’t gone either way, and while it’s a major plus to be on the right side of four of them, it’s playing with fire. Antwon Bailey, who became the star of the game on the game-winning drive, gave the ground game a kick with 111 yards and a touchdown, and Ryan Nassib balanced things out with a decent day. However, the struggling secondary continued to whiff, allowing Green Wave quarterback Ryan Griffin to put up 320 yards and two scores, and with West Virginia up next, it’s uh-oh time.

Ryan Griffin did everything he could to keep to give the Green Wave a shot at a huge win. After a disastrous performance against Army, Tulane’s offense blew up through the air and wasn’t bad on the ground with Orleans Darkwa running for 65 yards and two scores. But it wasn’t enough. Trent Mackey made 18 tackles and stuffed the Syracuse running game time and again, but the D couldn’t get the big stop it needed in the back-and-fourth fight as the back seven got picked apart and got nailed with a bad personal foul call at the worst time possible, allowing the Orange to continue its game-winning march. Now the Green Wave is on a three-game losing streak with an inconsistent offense and a defense that’s not getting into the backfield. A rested UTEP will be a bit home test before the gimme against Memphis.

(AP) NEW ORLEANS -- Ross Krautman kicked a 21-yard field goal as the clock expired, earning Syracuse a 37-34 victory over Tulane on Saturday night.

Syracuse (4-2) raced out to a 17-point lead in the first half, which Tulane (2-4) overcame to tie the score at 34-34 in the fourth quarter.

A roughing-the-passer penalty on Tulane's Dezman Moses prolonged Syracuse's final offensive possession and the Orange's offense did the rest, running out the clock and setting up the decisive points as it capped its perfect record against nonconference opponents.

Syracuse quarterback Ryan Nassib completed 19 of 34 passes, including two touchdowns, and rushed for another score, helping thwart the Green Wave's comeback attempt. Running back Antwon Bailey also carried a heavy load, gaining 111 yards.

Tulane racked up 471 yards of total offense, led by quarterback Ryan Griffin's 320 yards passing and two touchdowns, but it wasn't enough to avoid a three-game losing streak.

Syracuse (3-2) at Tulane (2-3) Oct. 8, 8:00, Cox

Here’s The Deal … Syracuse’s penchant for living dangerously and participating in overtime games this fall finally caught up with it last weekend. The Orange, which had already beaten Wake Forest and Toledo in extra sessions, lost in double-overtime to Big East rival Rutgers at the Carrier Dome, 19-16. The outcome was painful on many levels, but mainly because the team operated as if zero progress had been made since the opening weekend.
 
If Syracuse is going to relocate its mojo, it’ll need to do so in New Orleans this Saturday night. Tulane and embattled head coach Bob Toledo have problems of their own following back-to-back lopsided losses to Duke and Army. The Green Wave had no answers for the Black Knights option, yielding 353 yards and five touchdowns on the ground. The team is holding out hope that a return back to the Superdome for the first time in nearly a month can help unearth the crisp execution that was evident in a 49-10 rout of UAB three weeks ago.

Why Syracuse Might Win: Save for the unexpected win over the Blazers, the Tulane defense has been AWOL throughout the first half of 2011. The Green Wave has had no sacks over the last three games, while getting shredded on the ground and through the air. This is a good game for the Orange offense to build some confidence and momentum. It’s a flawed unit, to be sure, but at least for one weekend, it’ll be able to move the ball with the passing of QB Ryan Nassib and the running of Antwon Bailey. Nassib’s top pass-catchers, Van Chew, Alec Lemon and Nick Provo, will find the soft spots in a suspect Green Wave defensive backfield.

Why Tulane Might Win: The banged-up Syracuse D has had its own problems defending the pass in 2011, permitting 11 touchdown passes through five games. The Green Wave will attempt to exploit its visitors via the right arm of Ryan Griffin, who has thrown seven touchdown passes and only three interceptions. Of course, the quarterback is also going to get plenty of help from Orleans Darkwa, an underrated running back. The sophomore just got done rushing for 138 yards on just 16 carries, including a career-best 67-yard scamper to set up his short touchdown run.

What To Watch Out For: For the first time since the early stages of the season, the Orange has showed signs of mounting a consistent pass rush. Led by the pursuit of DE Mikhail Marinovich and LB Dyshawn Davis, Syracuse beat the Rutgers O-line for 11 tackles for loss and five sacks. The defense will need more of the same this weekend in order to silence the Tulane passing game. Davis has been one of the young stars of the team so far this year, earning the weakside job, along with the praise of the staff, in his debut out of high school.

What Will Happen: The Green Wave defense will be a welcome sight for a Syracuse offense that desperately needs to gain some traction. The Orange will control the line of scrimmage with LT Ryan Pugh and the rest of the blockers, opening enough holes for Bailey to shimmy for more than 100 yards. Nassib will bounce back from last week’s three-pick disaster by using low-risk passes to keep the sticks moving. The D will allow a handful of yards to Tulane, but stiffen in time to keep the Green Wave from challenging deep in the game.

CFN Prediction: Syracuse 31 … Tulane 17
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