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Can Syracuse football exceed projected wins for second straight year?

Depends on whose projections, potentially.

NCAA Football: Camping World Bowl-West Virginia vs Syracuse Reinhold Matay-USA TODAY Sports

Sure, you read Bill Connelly’s Syracuse Orange football and ACC previews when he was employed by SB Nation, but now that he’s over at ESPN, we get to read all of that again — albeit repackaged a bit. On Wednesday, he previewed every conference using the renamed SP+ (formerly S&P), and identifying the top storylines coming out of that.

Though Syracuse is only projected to win 6.8 games according to SP+, a lot of that comes from the absence of Eric Dungey. Returning production is a thing worth evaluating teams on, and there’s a chance that the Orange’s offense regresses without Dungey. But as many of us are aware, Dungey wasn’t necessarily running Dino Babers’s offense as intended for the last three seasons. Tommy DeVito may not be “better” just yet, but he may be able to run Dino’s offense better just the same. Bill seems pretty confident in the over, which would make it two straight years that SU exceeds SP+ win projections.

Elsewhere, our “friends” at Streaking the Lawn picked ACC win totals, and opted for the under on Syracuse’s 7.5. That’s a much more accurate line than the 5.5-win fraudulence that appeared earlier this offseason. Still, it’s far from a clear-cut pick. A lot of outsiders’ faith in SU likely falls on whether or not they think Dungey was the main reason for the team’s success.

That, plus the rest of your Syracuse-related links below:

College football conference previews and storylines using SP+ (ESPN)

Syracuse is projected to fall, in part because of the loss of quarterback Eric Dungey. But it’s hard not to feel optimistic about the Orange, both because of the star power they return on defense (pass-rushers Alton Robinson and Kendall Coleman, safety Andre Cisco) and because of the pedigree of new starting QB Tommy DeVito.

College Football Vegas Odds: Betting ACC Win Totals (Streaking the Lawn)

Just looking at a Syracuse 7.5 win total and laying the juice in order to get it, I cringe just a little. Maybe it’s just me, but I don’t see it. Dino Babers is a fine coach, but to me this was a team that overachieved as season ago and got a little luck. This year, that luck changes. In division, they have to go Florida State and NC State and from the Coastal, they draw Duke instead of North Carolina.

4 years since being medically disqualified, AJ Long reflects on self-doubt from football (Daily Orange)

Those past experiences that manifested his anxiety don’t cross his mind as much anymore. After two seasons at West Chester — he threw for 23 touchdowns and won a Pennsylvania State Athletic Conference (PSAC) title in his senior year — Long is content with how his playing career concluded.

Sean McDonough will do play-by-play for Syracuse-Clemson. No, it won’t impact GameDay odds (

McDonough will be announcing the game, in part, because he will be on Syracuse’s campus receiving the George Arents Award, which is the highest alumni honor at Syracuse University and recognizes alumni who have made outstanding contributions to their professions.

Ask a beat writer: Five questions about Syracuse (The News & Advance)

DeVito is a pocket passer who can run. He arrived with pro-level mechanics that allow him to comfortably throw the ball across the field. Dungey leaned on a limited route tree to complement his elite playmaking. I’m interested to see how Dino Babers and Mike Lynch expand the offense.

Syracuse among “next four out” in way-too-early bracketology (ESPN)

Michael Felder talks Syracuse QB Tommy DeVito (AM1300 the Zone)

Former SU women’s hockey player Brooke Avery signed by Metropolitan Riveters (Daily Orange)

Jennifer Meredith hired as Syracuse assistant tennis coach (Daily Orange)

Oshae Brissett forced to return home from Team Canada with injury (TSN)