Syracuse defeated Louisville 54-23 on Friday night, but with little movement in the top 10, the Orange will still be just outside the top 10 of the College Football Playoff rankings heading into week 12.
On Sunday, Syracuse was ranked No. 12 in both the AP Top 25 and the ESPN/USA Today Coach’s Polls, which, again, is its highest ranking since the 1998 season.
SU, now 8-2, plays its biggest game in recent history, with a huge impact on the College Football Playoffs when it travels to New York City to play No. 3 Notre Dame (10-0) at neutral field Yankee Stadium. A win would catapult Syracuse into a serious contender for a New Years Six Bowl game heading into its season finale against Boston College.
There wasn’t too much movement among the 12 teams ranked ahead of Syracuse over the weekend:
- No. 1 Alabama: Win over No. 16 Mississippi State (24-0)
- No. 2 Clemson: Win over No. 17 Boston College (27-7)
- No. 3 Notre Dame: Win over Florida State (42-13)
- No. 4 Michigan: Win over Rutgers (42-7)
- No. 5 Georgia: Win over No. 24 Auburn (27-10)
- No. 6 Oklahoma: Win over Oklahoma State (48-47)
- No. 7 LSU: Win over Arkansas (24-17)
- No. 8: Washington State: Win over Colorado (31-7)
- No. 9 West Virginia: Win over TCU (47-10)
- No. 10 Ohio State: Win over No. 18 Michigan State (26-6)
- No. 11 Kentucky: Loss to Tennessee (24-7)
- No. 12 UCF: Win over Navy (35-24)
The only team ahead of the pecking order to lose was No. 11 Kentucky, and accordingly, SU moved up one spot in the rankings. Here’s where some of the major media outlets stand on Syracuse after week 11:
- Sports Illustrated: Camping World Bowl vs. Iowa State.
- SB Nation: Camping World Bowl vs. Texas Tech.
- Bleacher Report: Camping World Bowl vs. Texas Tech.
- CBS Sports: Pinstripe Bowl vs. Purdue.
- ESPN: Camping World Bowl vs. Iowa State.
- College Football News: Fiesta Bowl vs. LSU.
Most of the major publications have now moved Syracuse off the ‘Tier 1’ bowl game (which would almost certainly be the Pinstripe Bowl) and up in line to the Camping World Bowl. CFN has upgraded the Orange even further, having them in a New Years Six game against LSU in the Fiesta Bowl.
The Juice Online Bowl Game Prediction (Brad Bierman): It’s not breaking news, ACC football is down in 2018.
After this past week’s games there are only eight bowl eligible teams with a minimum of 11 league bowl affiliations, and three other teams needing to win out to reach six victories.
As for Syracuse, with both N.C. State (Wake Forest) and Boston College (Clemson) losing division games, Pittsburgh winning in conference (Va. Tech) and Virginia in non-league play (Liberty), we see SU as no worse than fourth, and maybe third with only two overall losses, in the bowl pecking order heading into Saturday’s Shamrock Series Showdown with Notre Dame at Yankee Stadium (2:30 p.m. ET / NBC-Sirius XM).
Right now along with the duo of Virginia and Pittsburgh (Coastal leaders), and putting Clemson in the College Football Playoff, we see the Orange in one of four bowl games; Camping World, Belk, Sun, or Music City.
We’ll stick with our prediction from last week of Music City Bowl, but switch the SEC opponent from Texas A&M to Mississippi State.