Hooray for historic rivalries.
Syracuse just made sure another one will continue by agreeing to play Penn State in a three-game series. The first game will be on Aug. 31, 2013, at the New Meadowlands Stadium in East Rutherford, N.J. The other two are tentatively scheduled for 2020 and 2021 at home sites.
Penn State is the Orange's longest-running rival, as the two schools have met 70 times. They played last season, with the Nittany Lions winning 28-7 at home. Penn State leads the all-time series 41-23-5, with Syracuse's last victory coming in 1988.
Syracuse athletic director Darryl Gross said playing a neutral site game at the Meadowlands was key to getting the series resumed in the next few years. The Orange also have games scheduled at the NFL stadium against USC (2012) and Notre Dame (2014 and 2016).
It's great that the rivalry is going to continue, and the Meadowlands will offer a unique atmosphere. But Syracuse needs to be careful not to annoy its fans by scheduling so many big games away from the Carrier Dome. The flip side of that argument is, of course, that these games might not be on the schedule at all if they weren't being played at the Meadowlands. Still, it takes something away from the campus atmosphere and surely lessens any home-field advantage the Orange might have.
Who knows? Perhaps by 2020 the Penn State-Syracuse game will be a conference showdown. But the Orange's hopes of being invited to a supersized Big Ten, which looked strong just a month or so ago, have dimmed considerably, at least for the near future.