UCONN vs. Syracuse - 9/24/16 College Football Pick, Odds, and Prediction
Syracuse Orange (1-2) at UCONN Huskies (2-1)
College Football: Saturday, September 24, 2016 at 1:00 pm (Rentschler Field)
The Line: UCONN Huskies -6 -- Over/Under: 56 See the Latest Odds
TV: CBS Sports Network
The Syracuse Orange will travel to Rentschler Field to take on the Connecticut Huskies this Saturday afternoon in College Football action.
The Syracuse Orange fell to 1-2 (0-1 ACC) on the season after being defeated by the South Florida Bulls, 45-20, this past Saturday. Syracuse started off quick in this one as they held a 17-0 lead after the 1st quarter, however, allowed the Bulls to score 28 unanswered points in the 2nd quarter to take a the lead at halftime and couldn’t get anything going offensively in the 2nd half. Syracuse outgained South Florida by a 549-454 margin however, lost the turnover battle by a 3-0 margin. Leading the way for the Orange was QB Eric Dungey who completed 32 of 48 passes for 350 yards, 2 TD, and 2 INT. On the season, Syracuse is averaging 27.0 ppg on 505.7 total yards (360.0 passing, 145.7 rushing). QB Eric Dungey has completed 65.5% of his passes with 7 TD and 3 INT and is averaging 320 passing yds/game. Dungey’s main targets at receiver have been Amba Etta-Tawo (9.3 rec/game, 145.3 yds/game, 3 TD), Ervin Phillips (10 rec/game, 78.0 yds/game, 2 TD), and Brisly Estime (4.0 rec/game, 44.7 yds/game, 2 TD). Dontae Strickland (15.67 att/game, 58.33 yds/game) and Moe Neal (9.0 att/game, 40.0 yds/game, 1 TD) lead the way for the Orange backfield. Defensively, Syracuse is allowing opponents to average 38.0 ppg on 480.7 total yards per game (248.0 passing, 232.7 rushing).
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The Connecticut Huskies used a strong 4th quarter to defeat the Virginia Cavaliers, 13-10, to improve to 2-1 (0-1 AAC) on the season. In a low scoring game, Connecticut entered the 4th quarter down 10-3 but got a 43-yard field goal with 1:33 left to play to take the lead and survived when the Cavaliers missed a 20 yard FG at the end of regulation. Connecticut was outgained by Virginia by a 381-277 margin and lost the turnover battle by a 2-1 margin. Leading the way for Connecticut was WR Noel Thomas who had 91 yards on 6 receptions. On the season, Connecticut is averaging 20.3 ppg on 331.0 total yards per game (193.3 passing, 137.7 rushing). QB Bryant Shirreffs has completed 71.2% of his passes with a TD and INT while averaging 185.0 passing yds/ game. Shirreffs also leads the Huskies in rushing as he is averaging 53.33 yds/game on 17.67 att/game. RB’s Arkeel Newsome (12.33 att/game, 43.33 yds/game, TD) and Ron Johnson (10.67 att/game, 37.0 yds/game, 3 TD) make up the rest of the Huskies backfield. Noel Thomas (8.7 rec/game, 92.3 yds/game, TD) is the main receiving threat for Connecticut. Defensively, Connecticut is holding their opponents to an average of 19.7 ppg on 351.7 total yards per game (213.3 passing, 138.3 rushing).
The Orange are 4-1 ATS in their last 5 road games vs. a team with a winning road record however, just 2-5 ATS in their last 7 road games. The Huskies are 15-33-3 ATS in their last 51 games overall and 4-10-1 ATS in their last 15 home games.
As with most Connecticut games, Connecticut needs to be outstanding on defense as they can’t expect the Huskies offensive to put up many points. Syracuse looked outstanding in the 1st quarter last game against another very tough defense and although they struggled for the remainder of the game, has to be encouraged by the play of QB Eric Dungey. Connecticut might be able to score a few more points than normal against a weak Orange defense, however, I expect this game will come down to the last couple possessions and feel much more comfortable taking Syracuse and the points.