Syracuse (WSYR-TV) -- The Orange are setting up for another game Saturday – this one on the road in Minnesota.
It looks like it’s going to be a far tougher matchup than SU fans thought at the season’s start.
Both teams were underachieving last year and neither made it to a bowl game. And while it looks like Syracuse is much improved, there’s no doubt about it for Minnesota. The Golden Gophers have definitely gotten a lot better. They head into the weekend unbeaten at 3 and 0.
Granted, the wins have come against the likes of UNLV, New Hampshire and Western Michigan, but those three victories match Minnesota’s total from all of last season.
Minnesota’s regular starting quarterback, Marquise Gray is not expected to play because of a high-ankle sprain, so that’s a good break for the Orange, right? Well, not necessarily. The backup, Max Shortell, came on in relief to throw three touchdown passes last Saturday, which certainly got the attention of Doug Marrone and his staff.
The Orange have some injury concerns of their own as well.
Doug Marrone says Brandon Reddish is considered day-to-day with a lower body injury that he suffered against Stony Brook. His status for Saturday is still uncertain. Punt returner Steve Rene is also out. As for wide receiver Adrian Flemming and left tackle Justin Pugh, both guys are expected to start practicing next week and both hope to be ready to play in time for the Big East opener on October 5 against Pittsburgh.
After the Minnesota game, the Orange will get a week off before preparing for the start of the Big East Conference schedule.