Syracuse Football: A 5 question sit down with the enemy (NC State)

Nov 5, 2016; Raleigh, NC, USA; North Carolina State Wolfpack wide receiver Bra

The Syracuse football team is coming off their worst loss of the season. Now they have to try to get back to their winning ways. So to do that, we do our weekly sit down with the enemy.

Every week we do our weekly sit-down with a representative from the opponent. This week we return to the Carrier Dome to welcome Steven Muma Managing Editor of Backing the Pack of SB Nation.

In this interview we try to find out what is going wrong with the Wolfpack. Plus who are the big X-factors in this game for NC State.

Make sure to go give their Twitter a follow here (@BackingThePack) and also give Steven a follow (@Akulawolf).

So with that being said, lets get right to it. Here’s our weekly sit-down with the enemy segment, lets start the interrogation!

Oct 15, 2016; Clemson, SC, USA; Clemson Tigers wide receiver Ray-Ray McCloud (34) carries the ball while being defended by North Carolina State Wolfpack cornerback Jack Tocho (29) during the first half at Clemson Memorial Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Joshua S. Kelly-USA TODAY Sports

Paul A. Esden Jr: The Wolfpack started the season so hot (4-1), but have dropped four straight. What has been the reason for the decline?

Steven Muma (@Akulawolf):

“Take your pick. There’s the simple fact of the schedule–road games at Clemson and Louisville, plus a home game against Florida State. But there were also countless missed

opportunities here, most notably Kyle Bambard’s shanked potential game-winning field goal in the waning seconds of regulation at Clemson.”

“NC State is plagued by uneven play, and this has been the case throughout Dave Doeren’s tenure–the Wolfpack does enough to win a game for two quarters or 45 minutes or 55 minutes against a very good team but finds ways to give it all back. There’s no explaining the Boston College loss. That was just a thing that happened.”

Oct 15, 2016; Clemson, SC, USA; North Carolina State Wolfpack head coach Dave Doeren reacts during the first half against the Clemson Tigers at Clemson Memorial Stadium. Tigers won 24-17. Mandatory Credit: Joshua S. Kelly-USA TODAY Sports

Paul A. Esden Jr: Specifically during that four game losing streak, the Wolfpack had the opportunity for the upset of the century but they missed the 33 yard field goal. Has that loss sunk the confidence of this team?

Steven Muma (@Akulawolf):

“If that didn’t sting for a while, then nobody on the team is human. They got destroyed by Louisville the following week, and I don’t think that’s a coincidence. But I also don’t think they’ve quit on the season–they just haven’t been catching breaks, and sports can be cruel that way.”

Oct 24, 2015; Winston-Salem, NC, USA; North Carolina State Wolfpack wide receiver Maurice Trowell (87) tries to catch a pass while being defended by Wake Forest Demon Deacons defensive back Brad Watson (25) during the second quarter at BB&T Field. Mandatory Credit: Jeremy Brevard-USA TODAY Sports

Paul A. Esden Jr: We know about some of the stars on the team from Matthew Dayes to Ryan Finley, but is there a player no one is talking about that could have a huge impact on this game?

Steven Muma (@Akulawolf):

“Stephen Louis and Maurice Trowell can break a home run play in the passing game, they’re just not consistent.”

Nov 5, 2016; Clemson, SC, USA; Syracuse Orange quarterback Eric Dungey (2) looks to pass the ball during the first quarter against the Clemson Tigers at Clemson Memorial Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Joshua S. Kelly-USA TODAY Sports

Paul A. Esden Jr: Who’s the biggest x-factor in this contest?

Steven Muma (@Akulawolf):

“At this point I guess it has to be Eric Dungey, who is questionable for Saturday. Dungey I think creates a significant number of problems for NC State’s defense, but if he can’t play, the Orange’s one-dimensional offense suddenly becomes a pretty big problem.”
“Quarterback situation aside, this game probably will be defined by how Syracuse’s offensive line handles the Pack’s talented defensive line.”

Nov 21, 2015; Raleigh, NC, USA; North Carolina State Wolfpack tight end David Grinnage (86) fights for yards after the catch during the second half against the Syracuse Orange at Carter Finley Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Rob Kinnan-USA TODAY Sports

Paul A. Esden Jr: Finally, how do you see this one playing out? Who wins and why?

Steven Muma (@Akulawolf):

“I have no idea, and I have no justification for anything. Let’s say, oh … NC State 38, Syracuse 28. No wait, here’s my justification: I really need this to happen, it would help a lot.”

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