Blog Entry

Shocker of the season in Syracuse

Posted on: January 25, 2011 9:47 pm
Edited on: January 25, 2011 10:28 pm
Posted by MATT JONES

I began suspecting that Syracuse was overrated early in the season. When the Orange became one of the four remaining undefeated teams, some crowned Jim Boeheim's club as a Final Four contender, but I refused to give in.

Yes, the 'Cuse had been in the house with early season wins over Michigan State, Michigan and Georgia Tech, but it had also barely squeaked by in wins over William and Mary and Iona. The undefeated record confirmed that this was a team with talent, but the mediocrity seen often on the court showcased that with no Wesley Johnson on the roster, a legitimate contender it was not.

This initial suspicion has been confirmed over the course of Syracuse's recent three-game losing streak, culminating on Tuesday in a 90-68 loss to Seton Hall in the Carrier Dome that is as shocking a result as we have seen this year in college basketball. Boeheim's team was whipped from the very beginning, falling down by as many as 20 in the first half and never making a run that could even cause Seton Hall coach Kevin Willard to sweat a drop in the second. From the opening tip, Syracuse was unable to put the ball in the basket, but even more shockingly, defended as poorly as any game I can remember in the Boeheim era.

What type of Jim Boeheim team allows an opponent as dreadful as Seton Hall (8-12 overall, 2-6 in the Big East going into the game) to come into the Carrier Dome and shoot 54 percent for the game and 58 percent from the three point line? This Seton Hall team came into the game ranked 293rd in America in field goal percentage, yet the Orange found a way to make them seem as if they were carrying a starting five of Rick Mount, Craig Ehlo, Craig Hodges, J.J. Redick and the college version of Chris Jackson. Anyone can lose a game, but to do so by making a cellar dweller in the Big East look like a Championship contender ... well that takes a special type of atrocious performance.

We have seen some upsets this year that were head-scratchers. Anyone who has had the misfortune of watching an Auburn game is baffled at how the Tigers upset Florida State. And for an Illinois-Chicago team that is 0-8 in the Horizon League to have upset Bruce Weber's Illinois team is also beyond perplexing. But for Seton Hall to take a Syracuse team that just 10 days ago was undefeated, and destroy them in such a thorough, embarassing way, well that is downright shocking.

Boeheim will surely have the Orange playing better before the season is over, but remember this game come March. No team that is a legitimate national player loses a game like this, in a manner this humiliating. Mark Jan. 25 as the date that the 'Cuse was officially eliminated from Final Four contender status.

Since: Mar 20, 2008
Posted on: January 26, 2011 3:50 pm

Shocker of the season in Syracuse


Since: Nov 6, 2007
Posted on: January 26, 2011 10:53 am

Shocker of the season in Syracuse

I would have to agree with the author on this one, although the pat on the back was a bit much considering the article if written a week ago would have gave him some street cred, this years team is just not good. Who did we really beat? Have we aven run an offensive play all year that was not out of a time out? Can we defend anyone good in the half court? this will be a 9-9 team in the big east, hopefully b/c we are about to go 5-5 after road losses at marq and uconn, hopefully we can pull a win out at usf to make us 6-5. As the author says we are not a final four team, fans need to come back to reality. we are gonna be a 8-12 seed, if i had to gueass a 10seed based upon what we have left on the Schedule. Had it not been for the ND game and the michigan state game, we probably go to the NIT. You can call me what you want, not a true fan or whatever, I am a realist though. Would i like this team to be a final 4 contender? yes. Is that a fantasy? yes.   

Since: Nov 15, 2006
Posted on: January 26, 2011 10:46 am

Shocker of the season in Syracuse

Before you throw 'Cuse (and the "Big East favoring pundits") under the bus realize that one of the Big 10's darlings are in the exact same boat:

At this point, its tough to differentiate the resumes of Purdue and Syracuse. Syracuse has the better victory (a win vs. Notre Dame) and out of conference victory (vs. MSU); by comparison Purdue's best win was vs. MSU (at home) and their best out of conference win was probably at Virginia Tech. Both have losses to unranked teams (though 'Cuse's home blow out last night was worse than Purdue's neutral site loss to Richmond).

Since: Mar 23, 2009
Posted on: January 26, 2011 6:12 am

Shocker of the season in Syracuse

C'mon man, this comment is ridiculous. I agree that Syracuse was overrated from the start but c'mon now. First of all Seton Hall is a LOT better now that they have Jeremy Hazell back. That guy can score and makes them a totally different team. If he hadn't broken his wrist earlier this year the Hall's record would be a lot better. Also the Big East has done well in the tournament in recent years, they don't struggle every year. Every year since when? Last year WVU goes to the final four, the year before UCONN and Nova went, in 2007 G'Town, the team you said loses to a 14 seed every year, beat UNC and went to the final four. G'Town doesn't lose to a 14 every year, that just happened last year, and while it was a bad loss, to say it happens every year is ridiculous. And if we go back a little further UCONN won it all in 2004 and Cuse in 03 so lets end this talk about the Big East doing so poorly in the NCAAs because it simply is not true.

Since: May 13, 2010
Posted on: January 26, 2011 5:23 am

Shocker of the season in Syracuse

Mark Jan. 25 as the date that the 'Cuse was officially eliminated from Final Four contender status.

Matt....Really?  After losing 3 you now know all of this?  That explains why you write rather than coach.  Anyone can look at a 3 game losing streak and say they are done and I knew it all along.  This doesn't make you smart.  It makes you a tool.   

What will you write in March.  Oh yeh...Boeheim will surely have the Orange playing better before the season is over ,

You can pull this line forwward and feel like a star again and say "Back in January i wrote JB was going to get them playing well again."


Since: Dec 30, 2006
Posted on: January 26, 2011 5:12 am

Shocker of the season in Syracuse

way to go out on a limb after boeheim said they were overrated all season-that and an unwillingness to go man to man when a teams shooting lightsout

Since: Oct 1, 2006
Posted on: January 26, 2011 12:16 am

Shocker of the season in Syracuse

Hey Jones-didn't you read the quote from Boeheim when they were in the top 10 early on that "this is the most overated team I have every had."

Just a brilliant piece journalism.

Oh-and did you hear Ohio State may beat Purdue tonight.

Since: Nov 25, 2006
Posted on: January 25, 2011 11:57 pm

Shocker of the season in Syracuse

I'm no Cuse fan, but its easy to say you're not a believer after a 3 game losing streak. Try writing this article before it happens next time.

Since: Oct 4, 2006
Posted on: January 25, 2011 11:26 pm

Shocker of the season in Syracuse

Who's Matt Jones?

Since: Jan 21, 2010
Posted on: January 25, 2011 10:51 pm

Shocker of the season in Syracuse

Boeheim to his players after the game:

"Okay guys, you know what this is? This...(holds up basketball) a basketball."

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