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Syracuse vs. Wake Forest: Official TNIAAM Predictions

The Orange might need a win here to save the season. Do you think they can pull it off?

Liz Condo-USA TODAY Sports

Tomorrow, the 3-4 Syracuse Orange host the 4-4 Wake Forest Demon Deacons in what is The Biggest Game Of The Year This Week. Win and the Orange are back on track for a bowl game. Lose and The Quest For Belk looks pretty dire.

So, how good of a chance do we think SU has?

Matt McClusky

Wake Forest 27 - Syracuse 17

The Deacs defense has only allowed more than 24 points one time this season, and that was to Clemson! Offensively, Tanner Price seems to be in a nice groove (12 TDs to just 4 interceptions) and Michael Campanaro should end the year with well over 1,000 yards receiving!

I write all of that because I think it's time to consider Wake Forest one of the better, grittier, teams in the ACC. This is a team that gave Miami all it could handle last week. The Deacons are a team with decent talent on both sides of the ball, a team that has a direction and the wherewithal to handle whatever the Carrier Dome can throw its way (remember, Wake played in Syracuse just a couple of seasons ago). So while SU may be ready to put Georgia Tech behind it, I think, given the injuries and the suspension of Ryan Norton (which could put gimme field goals in jeopardy), it's probably too tall a task to expect the Orange to win.

Dan Lyons

Syracuse 21 - Wake Forest 17

I'm holding out bowl hopes for this season, but as we all know, a bowl game is almost contingent on Syracuse winning this weekend's game against Wake Forest. Syracuse got roughed up by Georgia Tech last weekend, and the Deacs look much stronger than they did earlier in the year since they've shifted their offense away from the option and have focused on their primary strength - Tanner Price throwing to Michael Campanaro as much as humanly possible. With two weeks to prepare to rest up and prepare, and the game being at home, I have faith that the team will find a way to pull this game out, and keep the post-season dreams alive for a little longer. Let's all pray that this one doesn't come down to the kicking game…

Invisible Swordsman

Wake Forest 21 - Syracuse 18

I boasted before the Clemson game that I had never picked the wrong winner/loser of a Syracuse game since Sean started asking me to do so. Since then, I chose Syracuse, NC State and Syracuse respectively, and am now about as unlikely to pick a winner as Ryan Norton is to kick the game-winning field goal this weekend. Speaking of which, Syracuse and Wake both score three TDs, but Wake is the only one to successfully convert a PAT.

Jared Smith

Wake Forest 27 - Syracuse 17

A few weeks ago, I would not have come close to predicting this game would come out this way, however, a lot can change in just a few weeks in college football and, right now, it is a week-by-week process with the Syracuse football team.

Overall, I don't like how Wake Forest's passing attack with quarterback Tanner Price and wide receiver Michael Campanaro match-up against our struggling secondary. If the Orange can somehow find a way to slow down Campanaro then SU has a solid shot at keep the scores close and pounding their way to victory.

However, if the Demon Deacons get out quick on the Orange, who is then forced to throw the ball around then it is going to be a long day for SU fans. The only way the Orange can win this game is to force some Price interceptions, blank Campanaro as best they can and pound the ball with the running game, which Wake has struggled to defend.

Do that and we have a shot. But, right now I just don't see that happening.

Sean Farrell

Syracuse 21 - Wake Forest 17

In an offensive struggle, Syracuse's run offense and run defense helps the Orange get to 4-4. A combo of Jerome Smith and PTG coming off a bye week should be fresh. On the other hand, Wake Forest does not have a good rushing attack. The Deamon Deacons are 115th in the NCAA in rushing yards. Combine that with the fact that Syracuse will have Dyshawn Davis back. I don't think Terrel Hunt will have a great game, but he'll play well enough to put Syracuse in a position to win - some passing to Ashton Broyld, third down scrambles, and NO turnovers.

John Cassillo

Wake Forest 23 - Syracuse 19

Not having a field goal kicker will prove to be a bit of an issue for Syracuse, and ultimately decide the game late as the Orange can't attempt any FG over 25 yards. The offense will improve a bit -- relying on the run like it's supposed to -- but several turnovers on downs in Wake territory could stall out otherwise successful drives. SU's defense should be able to get some containment and pressure on Tanner Price, but with a very dangerous option like Michael Campanaro hanging around, there's only so much you can do. This has the makings of a very exasperating game win or lose, but unfortunately, I'm going with a loss (albeit one with improved execution on both sides of the ball).

Sean Keeley

Syracuse 24 - Wake Forest 21 (OT)

You know this game is coming down to a field goal, right? And you know it's going to be Riley Dixon attempting a 45-harder yarder with no time left on the clock. You just know it. On paper, I think Wake Forest is probably the better team. And on paper, Wake's passing game should dismantle our secondary. But you know what, they DID that last time they were in the Dome…and we won. I feel like this might be one of those games where you just throw out everything you know about both teams because, for whatever reason, things click for Syracuse and don't click for Wake. The Orange have a way of doing that from time to time. They're not going to do it against FSU, so they might as well go for it here.

Now it's your turn, what do you think?