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Syracuse Football: The Road to Six Wins Continues

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The Orange were idle this week, but that doesn't mean that its profile hasn't changed.

Thomas Lohnes/Getty Images

An idle week for Syracuse doesn't mean that the Orange's profile didn't change. Six wins are potentially on the table for Syracuse with eight games remaining, and some measures are more enamored with the Orange than others. Five weeks of games are in the books and things are starting to develop in important ways: With the nonconference season pretty much disappearing in the reverse horizon, stuff is getting real across the map. It's still early, but it's not sitting-in-pajamas-while-sipping-coffee-on-a-porch-at-sunrise-during-an-erectile-dysfunction-commercial-early.

So, as usual, accept, ignore, or process the information as your brain sees fit and the usual disclaimers apply.

THE ROAD TO SIX WINS (ACCORDING TO FOOTBALL COMPUTERS)
DATE OPPONENT MASSEY W% MASSEY PROJ. S&P+ W% S&P+ PROJ. FPI W% SAGARIN SPREAD
Oct-10 at South Florida 76% 24-14 61% 28-23 67% -7.37
Oct-17 at Virginia 47% 26-28 64% 33-27 50% -2.18
Oct-24 Pittsburgh 34% 24-30 56% 26-23 37% +5.70
Oct-31 at Florida State 12% 17-35 13% 16-35 10% +17.98
Nov-7 at Louisville 19% 17-30 22% 19-32 19% +12.40
Nov-14 Clemson 14% 14-31 20% 17-32 15% +14.98
Nov-21 at N.C. State 29% 21-28 44% 26-29 17% +11.11
Nov-28 Boston College 43% 17-20 40% 17-22 55% -1.02

Some brief thoughts on this:

  • The opening South Florida line, one that looked like a mouth that met the business end of a lead pipe when it was released, looks even odder in the context of what football computers are expecting for Orange-Bulls this coming weekend in Tampa. While Syracuse isn't staring at impeccable win probabilities or gigantic margins in its favor, none of these metrics have the Orange as an underdog. Take all of your money and get Syracuse with points while you can.
  • Syracuse's path to six wins is still heavily influenced by the Orange's performance against South Florida and Virginia: Getting five Gatorade baths on the register before meeting Pittsburgh is within Syracuse's field of vision. These are significant pivot games and manageable opportunities. If the Orange collars wins in the next two weeks, Syracuse's season will continue on a great trajectory.

From a pure projected wins-losses standpoint, this is where three football computers see Syracuse finishing the season:

PROJECTED RECORD (ACCORDING TO FOOTBALL COMPUTERS)
MASSEY S&P+ FPI
Projected Record 5.73-6.27 6.20-5.80 5.70-6.30

Margin for error would be nice, but Syracuse remains right on the cut line. Again: If the Orange burn down the houses of South Florida and Virginia, Syracuse's forward profile likely takes on a different feel and outlook. Even in the moment, though, the Orange's prospects went in the right direction during week five: While you were watching 14 hours of college football on Saturday in an effort to prove that the supposed positives of exercise and social interaction are lies from the liberal media, the Orange -- idle and getting healthy -- were, in the overall, experiencing improvement in their profile:

CHANGE FROM LAST WEEK
DATE OPPONENT MASSEY W% MASSEY MARG S&P+ W% S&P+ MARG. FPI W% SAGARIN SPREAD
Oct-10 at South Florida -2% -2 -3% -1 +2% -1.47
Oct-17 at Virginia +7% +2 +5% +2 +1% -1.73
Oct-24 Pittsburgh -4% -1 +5% +2 -5% +2.79
Oct-31 at Florida State +3% +3 +10% +12 +1% -2.50
Nov-7 at Louisville +1% +1 -3% -2 -3% +1.04
Nov-14 Clemson +3% +2 +6% +4 0% -0.09
Nov-21 at N.C. State +4% +3 +11% +5 +3% -2.94
Nov-28 Boston College +3% +1 -3% -1 -1% -5.99
MASSEY W MASSEY L S&P+ W S&P+ L FPI W FPI L
Projected Record +.014 -.014 +0.28 -0.28 0.00 0.00

Some brief thoughts on this:

  • The two most interesting changes from last week's assessments from football computers are the developments around the N.C. State and Boston College games. The close to the Orange's schedule, at least right now, is looking tastier. The projected margins/spreads generally moved in the right direction for both games, as did Syracuse's associated win probabilities. As important as the Orange's next two games are, diluted threats at the end of November are just as important for Syracuse.
  • That Florida State-Louisville-Clemson stretch still looks onerous. Gonna need some rainbow rays for those according to the football computers.
  • The football computers are coming around on the Orange giving Virginia hell in two weeks, which is just a cheap vehicle to post this: