Syracuse students excited for another chance to see Orange play in New York for Pinstripe Bowl
For the team nicknamed “New York’s College Team,” it was only fitting that Syracuse would play its last game of the season in New York City.
“The Pinstripe Bowl is a great way to display (Syracuse’s) talents in front of an audience that we know is going to be present,” said Ben Glidden, president of Otto’s Army. “I think having it in New York City, with us being ‘New York’s College Team’ is just a great way to reinforce that for recruiting, for the fan base, for things like that.”
SU will take on former Big East rival and current Big 12 team West Virginia in the Pinstripe Bowl at Yankee Stadium this Saturday. This marks SU’s second appearance in the Pinstripe Bowl in the bowl’s short three-year history, having defeated Kansas State 36-34 in 2010.
Most college football bowl games are played out West or in the South because of the cold weather in late December and early January. Out of the 35 total bowl games, the Pinstripe Bowl is one of just two bowl games played in the Northeast and the only one in New York state.
“It’s a great way for the alumni to come out and see the Orange one last time this season.” Glidden said. “It’s a great option for this team. And I definitely see why (it) went back there this season.”
Syracuse resident and SU sophomore Meaghan Lane went to the game in 2010. She said it makes sense for Syracuse to be playing in its own backyard.
“I was kind of torn between the Belk Bowl and the Pinstripe Bowl because Syracuse is joining the (Atlantic Coast Conference) it would have been almost like an initiation for Syracuse to be down South,” Lane said. “But I think since we are New York’s top team, we kind of have the New York City market.”
Zack Molle, a member of the sports talk staff at WAER-FM 88.3, said in an email that although he agrees the Pinstripe Bowl is a good experience for SU fans and that it does help with recruiting from in-state, the Pinstripe Bowl was clearly not the best option for this team.
“It’s not ideal, in my opinion, because this team was so close to the (Bowl Championship Series),” Molle said. “Convenient? Yes. But ideal? Not even close.”
SU has the opportunity to play in the game because of the Big East conference’s affiliation with it. The Pinstripe Bowl is a contest that generally features the fourth-place Big East team against the seventh-place finisher in the Big 12. With Syracuse’s inevitable move to the ACC in 2013, it’s unlikely Syracuse will get another Pinstripe Bowl invite.
“This bowl was designed for Syracuse. You look at it, and you kind of expect SU to finish in the middle of the Big East every year based on most of recent history,” Molle said. “Of course with the move to the ACC, I highly doubt SU ever plays in the Pinstripe Bowl again.”
The Pinstripe Bowl might be a welcome sight for many in-state fans, since the Orange played the majority of its games outside of New York state this year. SU hosted just five of its 12 games in the Carrier Dome, leaving seven to be played out of state, although one was at MetLife Stadium in East Rutherford, N.J., just about 30 minutes outside of New York City. It’s understandable that fans like Lane are excited for another chance to cheer on SU football.
“It’s almost like a home game for us because of the atmosphere,” Lane said. “I’m thinking we’ll have a great fan base down there. New York is just a great place for a bowl game.”
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