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Remember that time Syracuse turned down a Rose Bowl invite?

Over 100 years ago, the Orangemen declined to appear in the sport’s most prestigious individual bowl game.

NCAA Football: Oregon State at UCLA Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

Today’s the annual Rose Bowl Game, which usually happens on January 1 each year, but occasionally ends up on January 2. A few days ago, SB Nation wrote up why that happens, so give that a read.

While the Syracuse Orange are nowhere near the Rose Bowl, Pasadena or any bowl game this year, they nearly made the Rose Bowl one time. In 1915 (technically 1916, following the 1915 season), they turned down the trip because they’d already visited the West Coast that year.

The 9-1-2 Orangemen had the country’s best defense (allowed just 1.3 points per game) while barnstorming around much of the Ivy League and portions of the West Coast that year. For some reason, they spent three consecutive weeks near the end of the season on the other side of the country. SU tied Montana 6-6, and then the following week, shut out Oregon State 28-0 on a neutral field in Portland. They’d shut out Occidental in Los Angeles the following week as well.

Because of those three games, it was a tough ask for Syracuse to get back on the road — BY TRAIN -- and trek back west just a couple weeks after returning (especially since they’d just been to L.A. on December 6).

As chronicled by Scott Pitoniak in “100 Things Syracuse Fans Should Know & Do Before They Die,” then-Chancellor James Roscoe Day shot down the Rose Bowl invite because the athletic budget had been depleted by the three-game West Coast trip in November and December.

Syracuse had another Rose Bowl chance shot down in 1922 as well, though that story didn’t seem to present the same level of intrigue as the one above. Still, read Pitoniak’s book if you want the scoop on that situation as well.

The Orange have never played in the Rose Bowl, and because of the permanent tie-ins the game has with the Big Ten and Pac-12, the likelihood they ever do drops even further. Their only shot at this point is getting themselves to the College Football Playoff in a year where the Rose Bowl’s a semifinal game.

It’s tough to bank on that, though, no matter how much faith we have in Dino Babers. So in all likelihood, we’ll probably have to cling to these near-misses from the past. Syracuse may have been able to claim another national title had they made the trip back west and beaten Washington State. In real life, the Cougars defeated Brown (who lost to SU) in the Rose Bowl.

Darn you, James Roscoe Day.