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I just wanna do something special for all the ladies in the Orange.
(Is that possible?)
There were a lot of doings on campus this weekend. Because I was still on vacation, and happen to have my season tix for the gentlemen, I of course made the trip from my hometown northeast to Syracuse. It was an enjoyable Saturday for Syracuse sports, and the first time in a while that Syracuse men and women had a win on the same day. First to the men.

Donte Greene was again the leading scorer for the team. He amassed 21 points and nine rebounds. He also hit three out of six shots from long range and played 35 minutes. Greene, while adept at playing the drums and great at scoring, more than occasionally gets lazy on defense. That is my only complaint from Greene. Of course, defense does not matter in the NBA, but perhaps he will stay around for another year to learn some.

Paul Harris had another heck of a game with yet another double-double. He earned 20 points and 13 rebounds. He looked good cutting to the basket, but more importantly hitting mid-range jump shots. The most underrated skill a college basketball player possesses in my opinion is a quality mid range jump shot. Especially when the majority of players these days either shoot the long ball or play the low post, and not both. It is such a game changing aspect of a player’s game. Paul worked on it and now has a legitimate mid range threat.

Arinze Onuaku also had a nice game with 16 points and 12 rebounds. He continues to really impress near the basket. His rebounding, but more specifically his offensive rebounding and tip ability really contributes to the offense and overall quality of Syracuse’s game. He continues to be a beast down low and clearly manhandled South Florida’s big men.

Syracuse was big on the boards against USF. The won the rebounding battle 48 to 31. This is huge against a Big East team. USF may be one of the weaker teams in the conference, but they are certainly taller and more athletic than say a Cornell team. This gives hope for the rest of the Big East games.

Another great stat is the fact that Syracuse blocked nine shots with Harris and Greene each blocking three. This is a great stat as Syracuse has not blocked that many shots per game in the last few seasons. Also, only one seems to be memorable in the least. I’m alright with that last fact. Anyway, with a big time shot blocking team like UConn on the schedule, it is good to block a few of our own.

The bad news is that Syracuse, for the first time in a couple games, had more than ten turnovers. They actually had 15, Greene earning six of those. By comparison, USF only had 12. This is the first game in a few that Syracuse had more turnovers than their competition. While this in and of itself is not a reason to panic, Donte Greene earning six by himself is. Greene needs to be committed to not making lazy mistakes, or being too confident in his own abilities. This kind of behavior will no doubt catch up with him in a major Big East game if this continues.

Free throws were again only around the mid 50’s again. This time the team earned 58%, going 14 of 24. That is ten points that the team could use in a closer game as I have said all year. I keep hoping free throws will be improving as the season progresses, and although the percentage is up from the last couple games, it is not enough to matter in a close affair. Luckily Georgetown is way worse at free throws.

Three of our starters played 35 minutes or above in this game. Boeheim used only two bench players. This could be a problem if a referee crew decides to call a tight game. With the recent departure of Mike Williams from the team the question of bench depth again creeps into the collective mind of Orange Nation. I hope “The Belgian Waffle” (I am so making this catch on), Kristof Ongenaet, will have some more quality, productive minutes for the Orange to help this problem.

Other than a few problems, Syracuse played a nice game against USF to remain one of the three unbeaten teams in Big East play. Speaking of unbeaten in Big East play, how about the ladies?

Chandrea Jones led Syracuse in scoring with 20 points. The junior also added seven out of ten free throws, and hit a three pointer. This girl took it hard to the basket and generally looked like an elite women’s basketball player.

Nicole Michael, a sophomore, contributed her fourth double-double of the season earning fifteen points and 11 rebounds. She also happened to go three for three from long range.

This game started out rough, much like many of the Syracuse women’s games I have been to over the years. At one point they were down seven to 17. However, by the half they had amassed a two point lead. In the second half they easily cruised to a 79 to 56 point victory. This team fights hard, scraps for balls, can rebound, and most certainly can shoot from long range, as they 53% from long range, going nine for 17. This was a very good game for the women, and a statement game entering the Big East that they will not be pushed around. Their next big test comes in Pittsburgh tonight. Pittsburgh is 26th in votes, one spot in front of the Orange. Their next home game however, is the Connecticut UConn Huskies. They head to the Dome to play Syracuse on Tuesday January 15th. Look for that to be the real litmus test for the Orange early on in the Big East slate.

It was a very good weekend for Syracuse basketball. All things considered, it was probably one of the most important weekends Syracuse has had in a while. Both basketball programs earned quality wins in the conference early in the slate. This momentum is important and hopefully both teams can capitalize on it and continue their winning ways. The men will play Cincinnati away from the Dome. They head on the road and play outside of New York State. It will be interesting to see how they respond to a hostile crowd in the Big East for the first time. Until then, I’m back at school doing work again, which means I’ll be in my regular routines of writing on a more regular basis, as well as starting back up with regular Nunes/Magician collaborations starting next Tuesday. If you are a real person and had a short vacation anyway I’m sorry. If you are an undergrad and still have a week left, screw you. If you are my friend Alex, and a loyal reader of Orange::44, as well as one of the fine folks I attended the UConn football game with, you will greatly appreciate this video that got some love from Nunes/Magician the other day. I must have been talking to other people with this tomfoolery went down. Enjoy!

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2 Responses to “South Florida/Louisville - Syracuse Postgame Reactions OR Mega Awesome Weekend Recap Time”

  1. # Anonymous josh from cuse country

    Ladies and gentlemen, I give you Eric Devendorf.  

  2. # Anonymous Alex

    Thanks, BH.

    Hey... That's what alcohol and a love for college bands makes you do.  

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