Syracuse Orange head coach Doug Marrone yells at the referee against the Kansas State Wildcats during the New Era Pinstripe Bowl at Yankee Stadium on December 30 2010 in New York New York. (Photo by Chris McGrath/Getty Images)

Big East Conference Football Power Rankings: NFP Places Syracuse Sixth

-- See Troy Nunes Is An Absolute Magician for more on Syracuse -- See On The Banks for more on Rutgers

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Big East Conference Football Power Rankings: NFP Places Syracuse Sixth

The Syracuse Orange football team is not getting much respect from at least one mainstream source following the conclusion of spring college football practices. The National Football Post has ranked the Orange, 8-5 a season including a victory over Kansas State in the Pinstripe Bowl, sixth among the eight conference football teams in its spring power rankings.

Of Syracuse, NFP's Dave Miller writes:

Doug Marrone performed one of the best coaching jobs in the country last season in leading the Orange to the Pinstripe Bowl. The defense lost several starters, and defensive tackle and linebacker remain areas of concern. Replacing Doug Hogue and Derrell Smith at linebacker will be difficult. But Marrone remains optimistic. Can he deliver back-to-back bowl appearances?

Rutgers was last in the NFP's rankings. Here is what Miller said about the Scarlet Knights, who suffered through a 4-8 season a year ago and finished last in the conference:

The Scarlet Knights struggled to a 4-8 campaign in 2010, and head coach Greg Schiano’s squad really looked slow and unathletic at times throughout that trying campaign. Schiano moved some players around on defense to become a speedier unit, but it remains to be seen how good this defense can be in the fall. The offense struggled throughout the spring, but quarterback Chas Dodd and running back De’Antwan Williams finished with strong spring games. Can the offensive line develop cohesion in the fall?

NFP ranks West Virginia and Pittsburgh 1-2 in the conference.

What do you think, SU and Rutgers fans? Are things going to be that rough for your teams this fall?

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