Football is back at last as the season kicks off in earnest this weekend with local team Syracuse taking on an old nemesis: Penn State. Now let’s not kid ourselves, Penn St. has been the boss in this series more than not and a lot of those games were never even close as the teams head into Metlife Stadium to kick-off Syracuse’s 124th season.
Now there is a long northeastern history between the two and regardless of conference affiliation changes over the years, here are some base facts:
• The Orange and Nittany Lions have combined for 1,421 all-time victories. Syracuse has 698 wins.
Penn State owns 723.
• Penn State leads all Eastern teams and ranks 12th on the list of winningest FBS programs.
Syracuse is third among Eastern schools and 15th on the all-time FBS list (West Virginia is second
in the East, and 14th overall, with 708 wins).
• Presented every year since 1936, the Lambert-Meadowlands Trophy recognizes the best FBS
team in the Northeast. Syracuse has claimed the trophy seven times, most recently in 1998,
which is tied for second on the list with Army. Penn State has won the trophy a record 28 times.
• Penn State and Syracuse have 41 bowl victories between them. The Orange boasts 14 bowl
wins, including last year’s New Era Pinstripe Bowl triumph versus West Virginia. The Nittany
Lions have won 27 postseason games. (source-SU)
But, facts are facts in this series which may mean more to Syracuse fans than Penn State fans based on the won-lost total which is 42-23-5 Penn St. They also have won the last four the teams have played.
What is similar is that both teams have new coaches with Syracuse going with 1st year head coach Schafer and Penn St. guided by 2nd year coach Bill O’Brien who was names Big Ten Coach of the Year last season. Both teams aren’t naming who the new starter is as they seek new QB’s and neither team or coach is tipping their hand. Both teams have the goods in the running game and both return 1,000 yard rushers. Both have stout defenses.
There will be more on the teams coming forth but an early prediction has me taking the Nittany Lions over The ‘Cuse 31-21 in a better than expected battle.
Pre-season Top 25 and 5 others on the edge.
ventwing.com writers are participating in our own weekly football poll and I thought I would share mine with you pigskin starved readers. The top dog is the top dog until it gets knocked off the mountain in my book and no one has done it in a long time, not by much when they have been. After that, it is all conjecture and opinion based on a lot of reading but here it is:
- Ohio St.
- South Carolina
- Texas A&M
- Florida St.
- Notre Dame
- Oklahoma St.
- UCLA Northwestern
- Boise St.
- Michigan St.
Next 5 ready to enter
- Oregon St.
- Kansas St.
- Arizona St.
While I must admit that I think some teams should be considered in there, let’s see what Week 1 brings into light and revisit the Top 25 on Monday.