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Roundtable: Who Should Syracuse Football Schedule Home & Home Series With?

If you could book three home-and-home series for Syracuse, who would you schedule? Would you go for wins? Recruiting trips? Marquee opponents?

Joshua S. Kelly-USA TODAY Sports

We've talked a lot about schedules on the site. Sean says soft scheduling is the path to enlightenment. John would just like to see Syracuse schedule...someone. Anyone.

Mark Coyle seems pretty intent on smart scheduling, whatever that might entail. And that got us thinking about the schools that we'd like to see Syracuse Orange football add to the upcoming schedules. And so, we posed the question to the TNIAAM staff...

Who are the three schools you would like Syracuse Football to sign a home-and-home with right now and who are the three schools you would like to see SU do a home-and-home with once we're good again*

Keep in mind this is not about who you want to see on a schedule in one season, but merely schools you want to see on Syracuse's schedule in the coming years.

John Cassillo

Right now, the answer should be (take notes, kids) Old Dominion, Georgia State and FAU. All in prime recruiting areas that we don't get to play in every year. Only one of them (ODU) stands any real chance of beating us right now. We're doing fairly well recruiting Georgia and Florida already, but that extra stake in the ground can only help. VA has a ton of talent we've yet to really tap. Time to start doing so.

Once we're good again, West Virginia and Penn State are the two obvious ones. If we're playing toward historical significance/relevance, I guess Maryland is the other? Though selfishly, I'd like the answer to be USC so I don't have to pay a mint to go see the Orange play. We'll call it the Gross Bowl, Presented by DOCTOR Scholls. We'll play for an Orange Trojan Trophy, Presented by Trojan Brand Condoms. Because #BRAND.

Dan Lyons

Pragmatic current answer: Georgia State, FAU, FIU. All three of these are in recruiting areas we covet, all three range from very mediocre to really terrible (hi Georgia State), and we could do even match-ups and not pay them for one-off games. Set up the Florida games for years where we're not heading to Tallahassee (or Miami once every century when the stars align), and we have some sensible, winning scheduling that checks off a few boxes.

Assuming we become good again at some point:

Michigan - last time we played them, we beat the hell out of them at the Big House, and as legend has it, some Syracuse fans stole the "Go Blue" banner, which is apparently still somewhere in CNY. It is one of my favorite Syracuse football stories, and playing the Wolverines would be fun. Harbaugh and Shafer have a relationship, so maybe this could happen somewhere down the line.

Auburn - We're coming for you, Pat Dye.

Georgetown - They should be our FCS opponent every year. We should always try to score 70 points.

Claudia Ceva

I think for now and the foreseeable future, we should schedule home-and-homes against teams in hot recruiting areas, such as Florida, Alabama, and Georgia. I'm thinking schools like Florida Atlantic or Florida International, Georgia Southern, Southern Alabama, and Georgia State would fit that mold. As far as a potential FCS opponent, I'm thinking Dayton, because why not? Perfect revenge for the 2014 NCAA tournament! UAlbany would be an easier NY opponent. We already play them in other sports, so why not football? If we really wanted to go high-profile, though, we should try to schedule North Dakota State because they've had tremendous success lately, and because Fargo just seems like a great college atmosphere to be at (you don't get GameDay to come twice for nothing).

When Syracuse is finally good again, I would honestly say that any SEC or B1G school would be a great opponent to schedule. Alabama, Auburn, and Georgia would be my top picks there. Penn State for the B1G. I think it could be fun to schedule Oregon or Oklahoma.

Top 3 Now: FAU/FIU, Georgia Southern, and UAlbany.

Top 3 When We Become Good Again: Auburn, Penn State, and Oregon.

Kevin Wall

I'll echo what others have said about the three right now. SU should be playing FAU/FIU, Georgia State, and Old Dominion. Until there is a change in the ACC scheduling, Syracuse should have at least one game in Georgia/Florida each year. It's clear that recruiting in these areas is very important, so make sure to play games near these recruits.

When Syracuse is ready to play more challenging OOC games, I'd like to see games against a mix of traditional and new opponents. I'm a sucker for a trophy game that has meaning, so definitely West Virginia would have to be included. For the other two games, I'd like to see someone different mixed in and have SU head to areas of the country that would appeal to alums looking for a new road trip, so right now I'd make those "new" opponents Arizona and Ole Miss.

Andy Pregler

On Home and Home- My opinion is this: non-conference games serve two purposes at all times. You win games early in season so the fan base tunes it and you set up better for bowl games AND you sell out your home stadium to earn revenue. In that order. Now, for SU, we've gone into this a bunch about which opponents we should and should not schedule etc, but in a perfect world where we get whatever we want, I want to see SU start off with home and homes against UConn (done), Temple and Army. UConn carries some lingering Big East nostalgia + that whole basketball spillover thing. Temple is a nice close drive in a heavy alumni area against a team that can sometimes be threatening but rarely is. Army is a game that always seemed to make sense to me, I mean middle of New York and all, plus Syracuse is always trying to do more with Fort Drum and our military efforts, why not go all in and have military day and pack the dome with veterans and service member families? None of these opponents really fills a recruiting need at this point, but they're winnable games against schools someone off the street would have heard of in areas where fans can access easily on the road and marketing would be pretty easy.

Down the line, I want to see SU really restore the rivalries with PSU and WVU in coin flip games at the end of the non conference slate. For a wild card, I'd love to see us solidify our Florida connection with a home and home with the Florida Gators and show off to recruits who are getting to know the Orange name in the state.

Sean Keeley

I've made it abundantly clear I want to see Syracuse play inferior opponents that they can rack up wins against right now. The only other criteria is that it would make sense to make those away games into recruiting business trips as well. We've already got a home-and-home with USF but let's keep that Florida momentum going and schedule FAU, which would put up in the actual South Florida. Georgia is clearly a priority for Scott Shafer so we need Georgia State on that list as well. Thirdly, I actually like scheduling a MAC school because we do like to recruit the Midwest and we've gotten some pretty solid guys from Michigan/Illinois (Ron Thompson, Denzel Ward, Marquise Blair). So I'd like  to see us play a school like Kent State, who sucks but gives us access to the region.

When Syracuse is a consistent winner and bowl team, I've got my eye on you, Penn State. I really want a shot at the Lions when we're good enough to mop the floor with them. I do like the idea of putting West Virginia back on the schedule as they're one of the few non-conference games I feel like, as a fanbase, we can galvanize some hate behind. Maybe this sounds weird but I'd like to see Syracuse put Army back on the schedule as well. Let's get that in-state rivalry going and I feel like they're the kind of team that should always be in the mix on SU's schedule (especially since they're fairly beatable).

Now it's your turn. Who are your three series right now and who are your three series when we're good again?