The 1997 Syracuse Orange had started with such promise. Now the blowout of the Wisconsin Badgers seems like it was years ago as the Orange drop their third straight game losing 31-3 to the Virginia Tech Hokies.
After two excruciating late losses, Syracuse decided to make it easier on their fans by sputtering their way through sixty minutes at Lane Stadium. For the second week in a row, the Syracuse run defense didn’t make the team plane. The Hokies racked up 221 yards rushing as they controlled the ball and kept the Orange offense at bay.
It was a 7-0 game at the half with the only score coming on a 22-yard pass from Al Clark to Shawn Scales. The Hokies doubled their lead when Ken Oxendine, who had 104 yards on the ground, punched it in from 4 yards out. Syracuse got a 32-yard field goal from Nate Trout, but that’s all the Orange would get on this night in Blacksburg.
Virginia Tech intercepted Donovan McNabb and Oxendine added his 2nd rushing touchdown and that ended Syracuse’s hopes. McNabb finished 13 of 22 for 198 yards and was sacked 4 times before Keith Dowling replaced him.
The Orange drop to 1-3 on the season and will return to the Carrier Dome to host the Tulane Green Wave next.