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first_img Published on September 12, 2019 at 1:29 am Facebook Twitter Google+ Chase Brice’s 4th-and-6 completion and Clemson’s game-winning touchdown drive in the final minute of last season’s meeting propelled the Tigers past Syracuse, 27-23. The Orange upset Clemson in the Carrier Dome in 2017, and nearly pulled off a second consecutive upset last year at Clemson.This season, Clemson is No. 1, and the Orange were just pummeled, 63-20, against Maryland.Here’s what our beat writers predict will happen when No. 1 Clemson visits Syracuse on Saturday night:Eric Black (1-1)Orange Paper TigersClemson 38, Syracuse 24After last week’s embarrassing loss to Maryland, SU head coach Dino Babers said he knew his defense wasn’t as bad as it appeared versus the Terps, but also wasn’t as good as it looked in the season opener. Rather, the Syracuse defense is somewhere in between and still, Babers hopes, one of the strengths of the team. It’ll need to play up to its potential against the Tigers, and even then, that may not be enough for the Orange to pull off the upset. That’s not to say it won’t be close, though. There’s something about playing Clemson that prompts SU to play its best football, as evidenced by the last two      matchups. I think we’ll see more of the same through the first two or three quarters but between the talent disparity and Syracuse not playing great football right now, the Tigers should pull away late.AdvertisementThis is placeholder textAndrew Graham (1-1)RegressionClemson 38, Syracuse 17For two-straight seasons, Syracuse punched way above its weight class, beating and then almost upsetting again, the Clemson Tigers when the two met on the football field. Of course, we all know the last time Clemson played in the Carrier Dome, the Orange pulled a stunning upset. We saw them last season almost do the same in Death Valley.But this year, it seems unlikely, almost impossible, that SU gives the Tigers a third close game. Will it be a 54-0 drubbing like 2016, when Eric Dungey got knocked out? Doubt it. (An aside: The last three matchups, one team has lost its starting quarterback for the remainder of the game every time.) But there’s a reality to be addressed here. While Syracuse has grown in leaps and bounds, we saw last weekend how there’s still a ways to go. And Clemson looks as dominant as ever. While the Orange won’t get blown out, they won’t make it particularly close. It’s a regression to the mean.Josh Schafer (1-1)OutmatchedClemson 41 Syracuse 20Last year Syracuse stayed with Clemson for three quarters, even leading by 10 points in the final frame, but couldn’t hang with the Tigers in the fourth quarter. This season, as Clemson rolls out a two-deep full of four- and five-star recruits, could be remarkably similar. Clemson doesn’t have the defensive line it’s had in the past, but what it returns on offense in two potential Heisman candidates at quarterback and running back is just as lethal. Running back Travis Etienne exposed a new group of Syracuse linebackers last season to the tune of 203 rushing yards, and with 258 through two games, Saturday could be a repeat of last year. After 63 points allowed against Maryland, the likes of Trevor Lawrence and Etienne are a tough transition for the Orange. Syracuse’s offense showed glimpses of promise last week. With the largest crowd the Orange have had in years, Syracuse can stay with Clemson early, but as the game wears on, the Tigers just have too much top level talent for SU to hang on. Commentslast_img read more