Day & Time: Saturday, September 21 @ Noon ET
Location: The Carrier Dome, AKA The Dome, AKA Loud House, AKA Our House, Syracuse, NY.
Line (In Relation to Syracuse): It opened as Syracuse -4, but has moved to -6 with a moneyline of -225.
TV/Streaming: ACC Network
Radio: Cuse.com, TK 99/105, WAER 88.3, SiriusXM XM 193 (Streaming 955)
Western Michigan blog: Hustle Belt
Rivalry: 1-0, Syracuse
Current Streak: Fairly obvious.
First Meeting: The 2018 season opened with the Orange traveling to Kalamazoo, Mich. and opened with a 34-7 first half of dominance. In what will surely be brought up 100 times, then starting QB Eric Dungey was pulled in favor of current starter Tommy DeVito, who struggled while the Broncos pulled within six points. Dungey re-entered the game and led the Orange 3 more scores, ensuring ‘Cuse left with a 55-42 win.
Last Meeting: Also last year. If that wasn’t clear.
Head Coaches: Syracuse: Dino Babers (19-21, 4th season); Western Michigan: Tim Lester (15-13, 3rd season)
Coach Bio: DO WE KNOW TIM. Lester served on the Syracuse coaching staff from 2013-15, including a season and a half at the Orange’s offensive coordinator. Lester played at WMU from 1996-99, then headed to XFL (as you well know). “Submarine” moved on to the Arena League for a bit, then took over as Elmhurst’s offensive coordinator by 2002. That led him to St. Joseph’s, then back to Western Michigan as a QBs coach. A brief trip to North Central led to becoming Elmhurst’s head coach, then joining Scott Shafer in Syracuse. After the staff departed, he was Purdue’s quarterbacks coach before his alma mater came calling for the head job.
Last Year: While Western Michigan did not improve on their 6-6 record, the did earn an invite to the Famous Idaho Potato Bowl, getting blown out by BYU as the Broncos will have to continue to wait for their program’s second ever bowl win. WMU started the MAC campaign hot, ripping off a 4-0 start, only to drop the next three games. That would be costly, as Lester and Co. managed to upset MAC West Division Champions Northern Illinois in their final game of the season.
Last Game: Because college football is cruel, the Broncos set a school record and rushed for seven touchdowns in a dominating win over Georgia State.
”Fear Me, I’ve Killed Hundreds of Timelords”: LeVante Bellamy had plenty of touches versus Syracuse last year, and rushed for 192 yards and 3 touchdowns in said blowout victory. Last year, Bellamy racked up over 1,200 yards on the ground with seven total touchdowns for the Broncos.
If Syracuse Wins: The ship starts to feel righted with a very winnable home game in Holy Cross next week to lead into the bye week and get the Orange to 3-2 on the year.
If Syracuse Loses: Panic Button, meet the ‘Cuse fanbase.
Fun Fact: With last year’s win, the Orange remain undefeated against directional Michigans. They’re now 4-0 versus Central Michigan and 1-0 versus both Eastern and Western Michigan, respectively.