Syracuse Football 2014: Expert Predictions

Scout.com predicts how the Syracuse Orange will fare during the 2014 college football season.

Brian Dohn, National Recruiting Analyst: 8-4 - I like the way Syracuse’s schedule sets up, and being 3-0 heading into the Notre Dame game is a must since it is followed up by games against Louisville and Florida State. In fact, the middle of the schedule is a bear, but the final four games are winnable. Given the way Syracuse plays as a team and the staff does a nice job of developing talent, I think the Orange will come together nicely and even surprise a few teams along the way.

John Garcia Jr., Recruiting Analyst: 7-5 - I see Syracuse going 7-5, improving from last season after a strong potential start out of the gate with a bye week sandwiched between weaker opponents. However, there is a tougher stretch immediately after with Notre Dame, Louisville and Florida State. But SU will have regrouped enough in the late stage of the season to perhaps pull a surprise win over Duke or Pittsburgh. Personnel wise, the Syracuse defense is in very good shape compared to a season ago. The only major question marks for me are in the defensive interior in replacing an All-ACC guy like Jay Bromley which will likely be done by committee. On offense, year two of the Terrel Hunt/George McDonald battery should prove beneficial to all involved. A deep backfield should ease the pressure on the dual-threat quarterback, too.

Beth Long, Midwest Field Reporter: 7-5 - I think Syracuse repeats in the quest for a bowl game this season, and I think they come oh so close to winning a few more games than I actually projected. The offense has a good season, showing improvement throughout the year and the Orange have a great finish to the year.

Mike McAllister, CuseNation.com Publisher: 8-4 - Syracuse should be better than season, especially on the offensive side of the ball. The development of Terrel Hunt is critical, and all signs point to a strong season from the junior signal caller. Scott Shafer always has strong defenses, which should help as well. Talented freshmen mixing with experienced veterans is a recipe for success. There is a tough stretch in the middle of the schedule, but Syracuse should get off to a fast start and have a manageable series of matchups to wrap up the season. The Orange will continue to step further away from where the program was and establish themselves back as a solid program.

Nicole Todd, CuseNation.com Intern: 9-3 - After seeing Syracuse during pre-season they have the potential to win more games than last year. They have strong leadership and a desire to win. They have a few tough games through the season like Florida State. It'll be interesting to see how they handle that and the experience of playing down at MetLife against Notre Dame. They have to stay focused throughout the season. We will just have to wait and see after Friday how the season starts out.