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Miami - Syracuse Preview

Syracuse students agree: Each loyal son knows Miami will lose.
Miami heads to the Dome today in a matchup that brings a touch of nostalgia back to me thinking about the old, old Big East days. Miami was terrible then. Syracuse always won. And by a lot. Now it's a little different when you have a coach that can actually coach. But Miami might be the most yo-yo team in the league. They crushed Duke at Duke, took Virginia to 2 overtimes in a narrow loss, and also lost to Green Bay, Eastern Kentucky, and Providence. Which team shows up in the Dome? Your guess is as good as mine. The same can be said for Syracuse, who bounced back slightly against BC earlier this week, but still had to make it a game with missed free throws and allowing BC clean looks at the basket they just missed. BC couldn't really buy 2 point buckets down the stretch or it could have been far closer. Trevor Cooney was only mildly productive, Christmas sat for long stretches, and Gbinije was hot and cold throughout the game. If Syracuse shows up on offense, they have a chance in this one. Miami does have a VERY good guard in Angel Rodriguez however. A guard that can slice the lane with the best of them in college hoops. And of course he can score, or kick it out for nice 3 looks, which generally came easy for BC last game, and will probably come somewhat easy in this affair. Rodriguez and Sheldon McClellan both can shoot it from outside. Syracuse needs to bother these shooters and if Syracuse can shut down or confuse Rodriguez, which is generally possible in the first half of a game playing Zone, it's possible Syracuse can get enough of a lead to win this game. If they are forcing turnovers, and getting stops but not scoring like they did for stretches in the BC game, Syracuse is probably doomed. I think Christmas and Gbinije show up, but Cooney is the every constant question mark. I think this is one that will be hard fought. But I think the Orange fall to The U by 11. This game is available nationally on ESPN 2 / WatchESPN at 4:00pm. I'm in the home office. John is in the swanky seats in the Dome. We'll see how the Orange respond.

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