I'm skeptical that the Syracuse football team will finish above .500 this season.

The ACC is tougher than the Big East and SU's schedule in particular is sprinkled with losable games throughout. But with a fair amount of talent returning on both sides of the ball and Scott Shafer in his second year at the helm, many people think anything less than 7 wins and a respectable bowl berth will be a disappointment.

Shafer, though, is still an unproven commodity and despite a slight uptick in recruiting the Orange still lag far behind the top 50 or so in overall talent.

Ultimately I think Athlon hits the nail on the head in their final analysis, specifically the idea that "every other game (besides Florida State and Clemson) will be a crapshoot." If enough of those toss-up games turn out in favor of the Cuse, 7 or 8 wins is certainly possible...but the thing about toss-ups is that they can also just as easily go the other way, and a 4 or 5 win season seems just as likely.