We are 11 weeks into the 2023 college football season, and the Memphis Tigers still find themselves in the hunt for a chance to play in the conference title game. The team is coming off another emotional victory after they defeated the Charlotte 49ers 44-38 in overtime. The win now sets the Tigers up for a home-finale showdown with the SMU Mustangs.
The winner will play Tulane or UTSA in this year’s AAC title game. The landing spots remain the same regarding the Tigers bowl projections, but different opponents are listed. However, the outlook has pitted the Tigers against ACC opponents consistently.
In the latest ESPN college football playoff and bow projection piece (subscription required), columnists Kyle Bonagura and Mark Schlabach continue their stance on where Memphis will be headed once bowl season kicks in December. Schlabach has projected that the Tigers will face the Miami Hurricanes in the Military Bowl in Annapolis, Maryland, which is also the home of the Navy Midshipmen.
But as for Bonagura, he envisions Memphis taking on the Syracuse Orangemen in the Wasabi Fenway Bowl, located in Boston, Massachusetts. The game location, Fenway Park, is also the home of the Boston Red Sox, one of Major League Baseball’s historic franchises. Even though Syracuse and Miami are not recognized as one of the ACC’s elite teams this season, they still present an opportunity for the Tigers to play against an opponent from a Power Five conference.
As it currently stands, Miami and Syracuse are placed 10th and 11th in the latest ACC standings. Without question, the Hurricanes are no longer the brand that rose to dominance in the 80s, but they still are a program that has relevance to the current landscape of college football. The team is on track to appear in a bowl game this season, but they are not back to championship-contending levels yet. As for Syracuse, they could have an interim head coach if they faced the Tigers in the Fenway Bowl. They’ve started the season with another hot start, only to falter once they face conference opponents.
Before the 28-13 win over Pittsburgh, the Orangemen were on a five-game losing streak. The notion is that their recent losing streak could signify the end of head coach Dino Babers’s tenure with the program. Despite how badly they have performed in recent games, Tulane remains the favorite to represent the Group of Five in a New Year’s Six bowl. Memphis will have an opportunity to leave a strong impression on committee members when they take on the Mustangs in Week 12.
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