Schedule analysis — 2013 Syracuse football preview

SCHEDULE ANALYSIS:

The Orange will face three teams who are ranked in the preseason AP poll, including a pair in ACC play, and two other teams that received votes over the course of the season.  Clemson, who starts the season at #8 in the AP poll, comes to the Carrier Dome to welcome the Orange to the ACC.  Tajh Boyd, a dark horse Heisman candidate, will lead the Tigers into that game.  Florida State is close behind the Tigers, being listed at #11 to start the season.

clemson

Syracuse will face Heisman Candidate Tajh Boyd

While they have not been to Tallahassee in almost a decade, the trip has been a historically tough one for the Orange, as they have lost their last five matchups with the Seminoles.  Georgia Tech is the third ACC team on Syracuse’s schedule who earned votes in the poll.  Three other teams in the conference slate also accrued votes in the opening poll, but are not on Syracuse’s slate.

Rather than Penn State, Northwestern is the third ranked team the Orange will face.  The Wildcats, who eked out a 42-41 win in the Carrier Dome last season, start the season ranked 22nd in the nation after last season’s 10-3 mark and being voted the 17th best team in the final AP poll.  Penn State did earn a couple votes prior to the season and will be a stiff test for the beginning of the Scott Shafer era.

» Related: 2013 Syracuse football preview, offense

The Orange should finish September no worse than 2-2, as the games with Wagner and Tulane are matchups the Orange should win.  The ACC, however, could feature some tough slogging for SU.  The Orange were voted sixth of seven teams in the Atlantic Division of the preseason ACC poll and they will face five teams that went to bowls last season in conference play.  It will be a tough task for the Orange to play in a bowl game in consecutive seasons for the first time since the 1998-1999 seasons.

SCHEDULE (all times EST, time and TV coverage subject to change):

 Date Opponent Time/Result
Sat, Aug 31 Penn State 3:30 pm
Sat, Sep 7 at (22) Northwestern 6:00 pm
Sat, Sep 14 Wagner 4:00 pm
Sat, Sep 21 Tulane TBA
Sat, Oct 5 (8) Clemson TBA
Sat, Oct 12 at North Carolina State TBA
Sat, Oct 19 at Georgia Tech TBA
Sat, Nov 2 Wake Forest TBA
Sat, Nov 9 at Maryland TBA
Sat, Nov 16 at (11) Florida State TBA
Sat, Nov 23 Pittsburgh TBA
Sat, Nov 30 Boston College TBA

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Jim Stechschulte

About Jim Stechschulte

A 1996 graduate of Syracuse University, Jim has reported on Syracuse sports for the Syracuse University Alumni Club of Southern California on nearly a decade, where he currently resides. He has also written a fantasy basketball column published by NBA.com. Follow him on Twitter @DSafetyGuy.
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