West Virginia

West Virginia to Camping World Bowl

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Jake Abbott. — PHOTO COURTESY OF DAVID PENNOCK

MORGANTOWN, W.Va. — West Virginia's 2018 football finale will be against Syracuse in the Camping World Bowl.

The game, to be played at 5:15 p.m. on Dec. 28 in Orlando, Fla., will mark the second time West Virginia has drawn Syracuse in a bowl game since joining the Big 12. In 2012, Syracuse wiped the floor with West Virginia, 38-14, in the Pinstripe Bowl.

Syracuse is 9-3 and played to a 27-23 loss against No. 2 Clemson, one of only two games the Tigers won by just single digits. The Orange finished 6-2 inside the ACC and finished second in the Atlantic Division behind the Tigers, who are in the College Football Playoff.

The Orange are a high-powered offense that has been able to hold teams at bay this year, averaging 40.75 points while allowing just 27.75. The offense hinges on dual threat Eric Dungey at quarterback. He has thrown for 2,565 yards and 17 scores, while rushing for 732 and 15 more touchdowns this season.

Defensively, the Orange thrive on getting after the QB, registering 38 sacks this season. Defensive end Alton Robinson leads the charge with 10. He also has three forced fumbles.

West Virginia's team has been equally impressive on both sides of the ball — for the most part — this season. The Mountaineers average 42.27 points per game while allowing just 26.55, which includes three games of opponents scoring at least 40 points.

West Virginia’s offense gained 5,724 yards on 796 plays in 11 games, an average of 520.4 yards per game and 7.2 per play. The yards-per-game average ranked second in the Big 12 behind Oklahoma, which eked into the College Football Playoff at No. 4.

West Virginia’s passing offense led the Big 12 this season with 358.1 per game, helping quarterback Will Grier become a Heisman Trophy contender, even after a slew of rough outings.

West Virginia’s 42.3 points per game is expected to hold throughout the bowl game, which would mark it as the highest total in school history.

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