NEW YORK — Syracuse and West Virginia may not have seen the last of each other.
Athletic directors from both schools said prior to the Pinstripe Bowl on Saturday that the relationship will continue, even though both schools play in different conferences now.
West Virginia moved to the Big 12 this year, while Syracuse is starting in the ACC next year. Both teams had previously played in the Big East, and have a rivalry that dates back to the 1940s. The schools have played each other once a year since 1955, with the teams starting the Battle for the Schwartzwalder Trophy in 1993.
SU went on to defeat the Mountaineers, 38-14, to win their second Pinstripe Bowl in three years.
“Oliver (Luck) and I talk on occasion and we have talked about the fact that… ‘Let’s look out in the future and see when we can get together again,’” Syracuse athletic director Daryl Gross said. “I think, once again, it presents great opportunities for us to meet new rivals but at the same time, reestablished some old ones. We look forward to playing West Virginia in the future.”
It won’t be in the immediate future, though.
Syracuse has room for four non-conference schools in its schedule for next season. They’ve filled three of those spots with Northwestern, Penn State and Tulane. While one of those spots is still free, West Virginia has already booked its entire schedule.
As for later years?
“I think that’s going to be interesting for all Division I schools is the new playoff system and how important strength of schedule is. I think that sort of needs to play out for a couple of years before longer term commitments are made,” West Virginia athletic director Oliver Luck said. “But certainly we’re looking to improve our strength of schedule and playing Syracuse in the regular season is a good way to do that. It certainly is a possibility.”Wesley Cheng