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Syracuse Football Over/Under

Brian Bennett did this on a Big East-wide scale but it got me thinking about the over/unders for Syracuse football this season.  Let's investigate:

Ryan Nassib over/under 1,800 yards passing

To give perspective, Cam Dantley threw for a measly 1,298 yards in 2008 while Greg Paulus threw for 2,025.  My instinct tells me Nassib will be closer to Dantley then he will to Paulus.  Not be cause he's not good, but because where is all this yardage going to come from?  He doesn't have a Mike Williams.  Hell, he doesn't even have a Taj Smith.  Since the TEs will likely play a bigger role in the passing game, I think the field's going to be small.  I'm going under.

Delone Carter over/under 1,000 yards rushing

Bennett says under but I have disagree and say over.  Carter rushed for 1,021 last year against a tougher schedule, not to mention having Bailey AND Collier siphoning carries.  This year it's only Bailey and maybe a couple to a freshman.  I'm not convinced DC3 will need a lot of time to get up to speed, no pun intended.  I think he hits the ground running (NPI) against Akron and has 400 yards by the time September's over.

Antwon Bailey over/under 500 yards rushing

It's a toughie.  Bailey ran for 312 yards on 67 carries last year.  I expect both of those numbers to go up, especially with Collier gone.  The passing game has no major threat, which means the offense will depend on the run more...but defenses will know that.  I'm going to go with over...but not by much.

Lemon/Chew/Weaver trio over/under 8 TD receptions

Almost certainly, these are your three star receivers in 2010.  The good news for them is that SU scored sixteen passing TDs last season.  The bad news is that ten of those went to either Mike Williams, a TE or a RB.

The year before that, in which there was no Mike Williams, was a little more even.  Eleven passing TDs, but only five went to a WR.

The SU offense is more likely to grind out TDs on the ground or through short dumps to the TE.  I'm taking the under, but I'm hopeful that I'm wrong and the passing game flourishes.

Nick Provo over/under 20 receptions

One gets the sense this could be one of those years the TE is near the top of the receptions list.  If you take Cody Catalina and Mike Owens' numbers from that season, they equal 25 receptions, good for fifth overall.  Provo will be the go-to receiving tight end for the Orange.  Unless someone else steps up to be more than a blocker, he should be a big target for Nassib all year along.  I'm going to take the over on 20 receptions, and think it might even be much higher than that.

Chandler Jones over/under 4 sacks

I know it doesn't sound like much but I think you take the under here.  Chandler's brother Art never had more than three sacks in a season and the SU defense is more likely to see a LB grab the sack than a lineman. Mikhail Marinovich led the lineman with three sacks last season.  There's a chance some of those go Chandler's way since he's not the double-team threat that Art least not yet.

Derrell Smith over/under 70 tackles

Derrell went from 36 tackles to 62 last season.  And that's the solo ones...that number jumps to 82 if you include assisted ones.  The beauty of the LB core is that offenses can't just key on Smith because Doug Hogue will make them pay, so they have to spread the respect around.  Expect the MLB to take advantage of that.  I'm going over.

#SHAMARKO over/under 12 career-ending hits

That's just assuming one per game, I think you have to take the over here to be safe.  Keep in mind, every time he hits one player, there's a good chance three more see it and run into the tunnel out of fear for their life.

Mike Holmes over/under four interceptions

Holmes had three INTS last year from the safety spot.  Now that he's back at corner, could we see that number skyrocket?  He had two INTs the year previous.  Math dictates he's due for four, but throw in the fact that he's going to be directly in the line of passes and I'm going to take the over.  Especially when you imagine the LBs putting pressure on QBs to make bad throws.

Ryan Lichtenstein over/under 68 points

Ryan scored 66 points last season on 27 XPs and 13 FGs.  His predecessor, Pat Shadle, scored 67 points in 2008 and 53 the year before that, though he did kick 69 points in 2006.  If we think the SU offense will be more potent in 2010, then it's good reason to believe Ryan will get his numbers higher, possible even crossing the 70-point plateau.  However, I'm taking the under.  Not only because I'm suspect of SU's scoring ability but also because of Ross Krautman, who might steal some of the kicks.

Rob Long over/under 2,925 punting yards

That's the number of yards he needs to become SU's all-time leader in the category.  He currently kicks 42.83 yards per punt.  Last year, Long punted 58 times for 2,538 yards.  That number is down from the previous year (2,898), which is down from the year before that (3,098).  So if history is any indication, he'll fall short.  We're also counting on the offense not being in as many punting situations as years past, so I'm taking the under.  Sorry Rob...though I don't think you'll mind.

Doug Marrone over/under 5,000 utterances of "tremendous" and "standpoint"

Over, over, over, over and over!

Syracuse football wins over/under 4.5

I'll stick with the same number that BB threw out there even though I'm clearly taking the over on this one.  Despite the fact that the Orange haven't won more than four games in a season since BGR (Before Greg Robinson), this is year to do it.  Akron, Maine and Colgate are wins.  I expect Louisville to be a win as well.  For the fifth (and sixth?), there's certainly a Big East upset or two waiting for this team along the way.

Let me know which way you'd go on each of these in the comments...