The smell of freshly cut grass in the stadium. The smell of barbecue, hot dogs, and brats outside the stadium. The anticipatory atmosphere within the crowd. The chants from the observers and fight songs from the bands. Yes, football is back!
As Syracuse trots out onto the MetLife stadium field, Orange fans will finally learn who their new quarterback will be. They will see what a Scott Shafer led team looks like. Having it against an old rival is frosting on the proverbial cake.
It should be a fun season, as they usually are. Focusing in on game one, here are five keys for an Orange victory:
1. Run the ball: With a group of linebackers that is only three deep, Syracuse has a chance to wear down the Penn State front seven. Doing will will continue to pay dividends throughout, and open up play action.
2. Take chances down the field: To keep the Nittany Lions from stacking the box, Syracuse has to have a vertical threat. Even if that means taking chances down field that don't result in much, it still needs to be a threat.
3. Limit Zach Zwinak: Penn State is likely to rely on their running game with a freshman quarterback at the helm. Limiting his impact will put the Orange defense in a very good spot.
4. Confuse Hackenberg: Show the freshman signal caller different looks, different formations, and exotic blitzes. This could lead to confusion and mistakes on which the Orange can capialize.
5. Get Ashton Broyld involved: Syracuse's x-factor will be unveiled today. Getting him the ball in space with a chance to make plays will only help the Orange cause.