November 8, 2007

Can Orange survive Bullfight?

Syracuse hopes to catch a talented South Florida team while it's down this weekend in the Carrier Dome.

After being ranked as high as number two in the BCS, the Bulls have lost three straight games to fall to 6-3 and out of the national polls.

The Orange, on the other hand, are implementing younger players into their scheme and are coming off a close loss to Pittsburgh last weekend.

Both teams hold a 1-3 record in the Big East.

It won't be easy for the Orange to get their third win of the season, but accomplishing these key objectives will help them have a chance at an upset.

Stunt Grothe

Sophomore USF quarterback Matt Grothe is by far the Bulls most dangerous offensive weapon. Grothe is an extremely athletic and mobile quarterback.

The Orange shouldn't have any trouble remembering Grothe, who set a school record when he threw for 364 yards against Syracuse last season at Raymond James Stadium in Tampa, Florida.

Grothe also rushed for 45 yards and threw two touchdown passes in a 27-10 South Florida win.

Grothe is most dangerous when he leaves the pocket and the Orange defense has already proven it is vulnerable against mobile quarterbacks.

The defense's number one priority should be to contain Grothe within the sidelines and not let him move up and down the field.

Syracuse's best bet would be to have one of its more athletic defenders (perhaps linebacker Vincenzo Girruzi) shadow Grothe wherever he goes, taking responsibility for him each play.

After being named freshman of the year in the Big East last season, Grothe has avoided a sophomore slump.

He leads South Florida in rushing yards and has 200 more rushing yards than the next closest Bull.

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