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ESPN's Mark Schlabach predicts losses for Pitt and West Virginia in bowl games

US PRESSWIRE

The bowl season is just underway and one ESPN personality predicts losses for both Pitt and West Virginia.

ESPN.com columnist Mark Schlabach expects the two local teams to fall in each of their post season games. According to him, the Panthers will lose to Ole Miss 21-16 in Pitt's third consecutive trip to the BBVA Compass Bowl in Birmingham. He also says the Mountaineers will lose a barnburner to Syracuse in the Pinstripe Bowl, 52-49.

Pitt seems to be an early pick to lose to the Rebels, and that's not a big surprise. Both teams are 6-6, but Ole Miss' .500 record in the SEC looks much better. They'll also be playing in the south where Mississippi should have a bit of a home field advantage, so I don't have much of a problem with that pick.

I'd disagree with him on the West Virginia game, though. Syracuse was a solid team this year in the Big East. But even though the Mountaineers faltered a bit in the middle of their season by losing five games in a row, they rebounded to win their final two and still finished a respectable 7-5 in the Big 12. Two of their losses were also by a single point to solid Oklahoma and TCU teams.

Even playing Syracuse in their home state of New York, I'd still give West Virginia the edge.

Photographs by dizfunk used in background montage under Creative Commons. Thank you.