Orange Watch: Orange-tinted questions to start 2012

While savoring watching the top-ranked basketball team enjoy its own play and camaraderie  on the court, observing how the football program will fare in its critical third recruiting class of the Marrone era with the February 1 signing day fast approaching, and wondering if the lacrosse team, less than a month away from its first scrimmages, can rebound after two “down” seasons with an eye towards returning to the lacrosse Final Four at friendly Gillette Stadium this May, some random thoughts leading to some questions to ponder…

**Just when you believed that SU’s 41-0 laugher over Clemson in the rainy 1995 Gator Bowl led by first-year sensation Donovan McNabb and future hall of famer Marvin Harrison playing his final game as an Orangeman was the Tigers worse bowl nightmare, comes this year’s West Virginia 70-33 steamroller over the same bewildered all-orange clad Tigers in the Orange Bowl Wednesday night.

Was that bowl game record-shattering performance WVU’s swan song in the Big East before landing in the Big XII?  Will the lawyers figure out a way to settle matters sooner than later so the 2012 ACC, Big East, and Big XII schedules can be finalized and announced in a reasonable amount of time?  And… will the Mountaineers situation figure into the timetable that eventually moves the ‘Cuse into the ACC?

More about (at least tentative) schedules should be known in a couple of weeks following the annual post-season barrage of football meetings among coaches, administrators and conferences surrounding and following Monday’s BCS championship game.

Finally, two last football realignment-related questions: What does the ACC champion getting totally embarrassed in its BCS bowl game, and the league’s (first-time) second BCS representative Virginia Tech losing in overtime to Michigan say about the state of the Orange’s new conference?

And, didn’t it look bizarre, or at least awkward, to see West Virginia players wearing the Orange Bowl winning t-shirts during the on-field, post-game celebration that read: “Orange You Glad We Won” with the word “Orange” the biggest of all?

Orange and Mountaineers simply don’t mix.

**To the aforementioned all-orange clad Clemson Tigers in the (appropriately named) Orange Bowl, and the four other ACC teams (Clemson, Miami, Virginia, and Virginia Tech) that wear orange to varying degrees in their uniforms, with Syracuse coming aboard with the nickname “Orange” and only one official school color, Orange (Pantone 1665), the identity and branding race is on for the SU Orange to be known as the Orange team in the ACC.

We’ve already seen the demotion of blue to an accessory color on the basketball uniforms, and the removal of all blue from the basketball court markings in the Dome.  What’s next – a return to orange football jerseys last worn regularly from 1974-76?

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Brad Bierman

About Brad Bierman

Now in his fifth decade of covering SU sports, Brad was sports director of WSYR radio for eight years into the early 1990s, then wrote the Orange Watch column for The Big Orange/The Juice print publication for 18 years. A Syracuse University graduate, Brad currently runs his own media consulting business in the Philadelphia suburbs. Follow him on Twitter @BradBierman.
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