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SU heading into a hostile environment this weekend

There are just two more chances for SU to become Bowl eligible. On Saturday they take on Missouri. The Orange will be on the Tigers’ turf, making this an even tougher match-up for the guys.
Syracuse (WSYR-TV) -- There are just two more chances for SU to become Bowl eligible. On Saturday they take on Missouri.

The Orange will be on the Tigers’ turf, making this an even tougher match-up for the guys.

This game is expected to be quite the challenge for the Orange. Missouri has a lot of the intangibles on its side heading into this game. It’s senior night for the Tigers. They need a win to become bowl eligible and with a road trip to Texas A&M next on the schedule this is their best chance to get that done, which means they’ll be playing with a lot of emotion, some desperation and let’s not forget the crowd will be very much on their side.

Missouri’s stadium seats more than 71,000 fans. That’s an atmosphere that the current players have yet to experience. And yes, the Orange played the Tigers for earlier this year and even USC at MetLife had a big game feel to it, but this Saturday will be different – and coach Doug Marrone knows it.

At his weekly press conference Wednesday morning, Marrone talked about the challenge of preparing for this type of hostile environment because it’s not something that can be easily simulated.

“When you never have played in it, it’s just like when you go to the Grand Canyon, it’s like, ‘wow, I’ve seen pictures…we talked about it with our players…there’s going to be a lot of emotion, it’s senior night, it’s blockout, it’s all those things that are going forward in helping this Missouri football team. For us, we’re going to have to withstand what hits us early on,” Marrone said.

Missouri is just 3-and-3 at home this season, but keep in mind the Tigers are in the SEC now and two of those losses were to Alabama and Georgia, both of which are ranked among the top five teams in the country.

The Missouri offense is led by junior quarterback James Franklin. He’s thrown for almost 1,300 yards this season and is currently the team’s second leading rusher.

Syracuse assistant coach John Anslemo compares him to BJ Daniels, which has to be a concern, given the fact that Daniels ran for more than 100 yards in the first half against the Orange just a few weeks ago.

Marrone says that he prefers not to compare one player to another, but he does admit that Franklin has his full attention.

Saturday’s game will air on ESPN U at 7 p.m.

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