Syracuse students agree: Villanova... wha happened?
Syracuse is still undefeated, having a three game week wrap up with a solid victory at home over #20 Marquette. Now they travel to Philadelphia to take on a Villanova team reeling right now. Normally Syracuse would be walking into a Villanova buzzsaw, but now there are several questions.
Syracuse by all accounts is the far better team on the court tonight. Syracuse is a perfect 17-0 on the season, with four solid wins in the Big East. Villanova, on the other hand, has lost three of four conference games with the lone win against DePaul and one of the losses against USF at home. The star of the team is clearly Maalik Wayns, who leads the team in scoring with 17.4ppg. He shoots the ball a lot and much of Villanova's offense runs through him. However, he does not shoot the long range shot well. He's only shooting 28.2% from long range. In the years that Villanova has found success over Syracuse, they have had solid outside shooting. Villanova does not have that this year. Therefore, the likelihood they will find success from working outside in is slim. The zone is built to take this team and shut them down. Villanova needs to have a perfect offensive night to upset the #1 Orange in their building. The good thing about Villanova is they do rebound the ball well, something Syracuse has had trouble with at times. But their defense will help, as well as rebounding off a lot of missed three point attempts. Watch for the battle between Fab Melo and Baye Moussa Kieta with Mouphtaou Yarou. Especially the foul situation. If Yarou gets in trouble with fouls, this game should get ugly in Syracuse's favor real quick. Syracuse just needs to play a solid offensive game and continue to play good zone defense. This should be an easy one unless Scottie Reynolds gets more eligibility. Syracuse is your winner by 17.
This game will be available nationally on ESPN 2 tonight, along with ESPN 3 on the internets. You should be able to watch wherever you are. I'll be joining John in his game watching command center and I'm sure we'll be talking about our game, as well as the other Big East games on tonight. We'll be watching all three. Set your snark meter to 11.