Syracuse Takes on Depleted West Virginia
The 20th-ranked Syracuse Orange and the 16th-ranked West Virginia Mountaineers meet on Friday at Camping World Stadium. They will battle in the 2018 Camping World Bowl. This game had the potential to be a entertaining track meet, but that may not develop by players electing to bypass the game for their NFL future.
No. 16 West Virginia will be missing a pair of studs on offense when they take on No. 20 Syracuse in the Camping World Bowl. The Mountaineers have announced that quarterback Will Grier and left tackle Yodny Cajuste will skip the game to prepare for their careers in the NFL. The betting line has been turned on it’s head in recent days. West Virginia opened as a 6.5-point favorite and are now sitting as 3-point underdogs. The total has dropped from 74 to 67.5.
Grier would have served as one-half of a senior quarterback matchup. Instead that matchup will pit sophomore Jack Allison against Syracuse senior Eric Dungey. The Orange field general has thrown 17 touchdowns and only seven interceptions. He also has 15 rushing scores to go with his 732 rushing yards, which is second on the squad.
There could be plenty of points in this contest, as Syracuse scores 40.8 points on average and gives up 27.8. West Virginia averages 42.3 points, although with the absence of Grier and Cajuste will alter the Mountaineers’ offensive potential in this one. West Virginia will not be without talent on offense. Wideouts Gary Jennings Jr. and David Sills V have posted 115 combined catches for 1,823 yards and 28 touchdowns.
This, That, and a Dart Throw
West Virginia was 8-3 overall and 6-3 in the Big 12 during the regular season. The Mountaineers allowed 104 points in losing their final two games of the regular season. The losses to Oklahoma State and Oklahoma saw the D giving up 35 fourth-quarter points in the two games. Allison has only thrown 10 passes this season and will rely on the trio of Kennedy McKoy, Martell Pettaway and Leddie Brown. The trio combined for over 1,700 rushing yards and 17 touchdowns. Grier had 37 touchdowns and only eight interceptions. He is considered one of the top quarterbacks available in the NFL Draft, while Allison is widely expected to take over as the Mountaineers’ starting quarterback next season. This game could go a long way in determining that.
Syracuse was 9-3 overall and 6-2 in the ACC during the regular season. The Orange won five of their final six games after a mid-season lull. They scored at least 40 points in each of those victories. They had a 42-21 shellacking at Boston College in the regular-season finale. Moe Neal has 827 yards and is the team’s leading rusher. The issue is, he has only found the end zone in three of Syracuse’s 12 games. On special teams, the Orange boast an All-American kicker in Andre Szmyt. The freshman was 28-of-32 on field goals. First-team All-ACC punter Sterling Hofrichter should give them a nice advantage if the bowl game becomes a field-position battle.
PREDICTION: Syracuse 56, West Virginia 27
Camping World Bowl Trends
Syracuse Orange Trends
- Trend Under is 5-0 in Orange last 5 games as an underdog of 10.5 or greater. Hit % 100.00% (5) O/U 0|5 Push 0 W/L
- Under is 5-1-1 in Orange last 7 games as a favorite of 0.5-3.0. 83.30% (7) 1|5 1
- Under is 5-0 in Orange last 5 neutral site games as an underdog of 3.5-10.0. 100.00% (5) 0|5 0
- Over is 5-2 in Orange last 7 games as a favorite. 71.40% (7) 5|2 0
West Virginia Mountaineers Trends
- Trend Under is 5-1 in Mountaineers last 6 games as a favorite of 0.5-3.0. Hit % 83.30% (6) O/U 1|5 Push 1 W/L
- Over is 4-0 in Mountaineers last 4 games as a favorite. 100.00% (4) 5|2 0
- Over is 3-1-1 in Mountaineers last 5 games as an underdog of 3.5-10.0. 75.00% (5) 6|20 1
- Over is 6-2 in Mountaineers last 8 games as a favorite of 10.5 or greater. 75.00% (8) 6|2 0
- Trend Under is 4-1 in the last 5 meetings. Hit % 80.00% (5) O/U 1|4 Push 0 W/L
- Mountaineers are 1-4 ATS in their last 5 meetings. 20.00% (5) 0 1|4
- Mountaineers are 5-2 ATS in their last 7 meetings in Syracuse. 71.40% (7) 0 5|2
- Underdog is 4-1 ATS in their last 5 meetings. 80.00% (5) 0 1|4
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