Syracuse students agree: It was a rough weekend.
The Orange play their final home game tonight. I guess that's good...? Syracuse has struggled as of late, but considering they could finish #2 in the league and only have 3 losses heading into the ACC Tournament, we should be so lucky. They take on Georgia Tech tonight.
Tech is an easy game to scout. They play well in the paint and generally play the low post game well. They aren't known for hitting big time outside shots and they need to rebound. When Tech hasn't had more rebounds than their opponent they have lost the game. When they have managed to get more, they've usually won. Second chance points and stopping second chance points for their opponents are really what makes Georgia Tech tick. Syracuse's offense has struggled as of late, but they continue to distribute the ball well and make good plays. The ball just doesn't find the bottom of the hoop. A big problem when you need to score more points than the other team to win. But really, this one is simple. If Christmas, and too a lesser extent Fair and Keita stay out of foul trouble and are able to continue to pull rebounds down or earn second chance bunnies, Syracuse will win. If they don't, Syracuse will again struggle and probably not score enough points. The last few games have been miserable to watch as teams take the air out of the ball and force Syracuse to play 30 seconds of defense. That wears down on you slightly, but really all it does is lower the possession count and makes missed baskets hurt that much more. I don't know what player will step up and make some baskets tonight. I know it needs to be Fair, and then either Christmas or Ennis. Roberson will probably see some floor time tonight with Grant injured, and Gbinije will also have to step up and play some minutes. He's done well so far so I don't think that will be a problem but I do worry about Roberson. At least he is quick and good for some fouls. This is the last home game for Fair and Keita. I will certainly remember one more than the other. CJ and Keita stayed and I certainly appreciate that. We will miss Fair's consistant mid-range game, almost a lost art these days and something I always love watching. With Keita, well I won't miss his oven mitt hands, I know that. I think the Orange will be fine though. They win by 13.
This game is available regionally on ACC Network regional coverage at 7:00pm. See if your local provider has the game here. If you aren't blacked out, you can watch on Watch ESPN. John will be in the Dome. I'm in the true home office this week. It was a tough weekend for many reasons so thanks for sticking with us, this team, and enjoy your evening.