Oct 9, 2021; Syracuse, New York, USA; Syracuse Orange running back Sean Tucker (34) runs with the ball against the Wake Forest Demon Deacons during the second half at the Carrier Dome. Mandatory Credit: Rich Barnes-USA TODAY Sports

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Improving Syracuse takes on middling Virginia Tech in ACC matchup

Syracuse and host Virginia Tech enter Saturday’s ACC contest coming off losses, but the Orange and Hokies likely have different vibes from those defeats.

Syracuse has a feeling that it’s close to a breakthrough.

In the past two weeks, the Orange have suffered a 40-37 overtime loss to then-No. 19 Wake Forest and a 17-14 home loss to Clemson.

Despite being 3-4 for the season and 0-3 in Atlantic Division play, the Orange might be building some confidence.

“It’s exciting and it’s disappointing at the same time based on what happens with the scores,” Syracuse coach Dino Babers said. “But I like this group. I’m not going to trade them in. I’ll keep them. We’ll put them in the oven, and when we get through baking, we’re going to have something that’s really exciting.”

Syracuse is led offensively by the ACC’s top rusher, Sean Tucker, who is 52 yards from reaching the 1,000-yard mark this season.

Tucker has rushed for 948 yards and nine touchdowns on 155 attempts (6.1 per-carry average) and has rushed for 100 yards or more in five straight games.

On the other side, Virginia Tech comes in reeling a little more following an uninspiring 28-7 home loss to Pitt last week.

The Hokies struggled with the ball, amassing just 224 yards of total offense.

Quarterback Braxton Burmeister went just 11-of-32 passing for 134 yards as Virginia Tech couldn’t follow up on a solid performance from the week prior in a 32-29 loss to Notre Dame.

Now 3-3 overall and 1-1 in the Coastal Division, Virginia Tech already is at a crisis point, with some saying that coach Justin Fuente is on the hot seat.

The Hokies are 22-21 in their past 43 games since 2018.

“It’s my responsibility, and it’s my job, to get us as good as we can play, whatever that level is,” Fuente said. “At times this season, we’ve hit that level.”

This will be the first meeting between the teams since 2016, a matchup Syracuse won 31-17.

–Field Level Media

Field Level Media
Sport Writer & Editor
FLM has a North American focus while tying into regional and hyper-local resources – providing the ability to distribute compelling content through the writing of professional journalists. As the U.S. sports content provider to dozens of digital and print media publishers through strategic partnerships with the likes of Reuters and Nielsen Sports, FLM covers the nuts and bolts with a breaking news desk and game event coverage.

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