Jim Boeheim Enters the Eye of the Hurricane(s) Looking to Capture First ACC Tournament Win
Syracuse Men's Basketball Coach Jim Boeheim has a national championship, nine Big East regular season championships and five Big East Tournament championships in his career at Syracuse. He is also a three-time gold medal winning Basketball Hall of Famer with over 1,000 career wins (regardless of what the NCAA says).
On Wednesday, Boeheim and the Syracuse Orange (18-13, 10-8) look for their first ever victory in the ACC tournament in Brooklyn, New York. The Miami Hurricanes (20-10, 10-8) stand in their way.
Syracuse and Miami tip off at noon on Wednesday. Catch our countdown to tip-off at 11:30 on 88.3!
Miami and Syracuse are respectively the 8 and 9 seeds in the ACC tournament. While Miami has the seeding advantage, the Orange have a bigger advantage over the Hurricanes this year: A 15-point victory to kick off 2017.
In that 70-55 victory at the Carrier Dome, the Orange got 22 points from transfer forward Andrew White III, 20 points from sophomore Tyler Lydon, and eleven assists from point guard John Gillon. Syracuse shot over 50% as a team in that game. They have however, struggled to pass the ball effectively and balance the scoring load between multiple players throughout the season.
What are the odds that an inconsistent Syracuse team can pull out a game like that again? It just so happens they're hot at the right moment.
Last game against Georgia Tech, the Orange had very similar stats to the Miami game, with a big boost from their leading scorer Andrew White III.
White III had 40 points against Miami and Tyus Battle had 22 points. The pair won ACC player of the week and ACC rookie of the week for their respective performances. John Gillon had ten assists and the team shot better than 50% from the field again. Georgia Tech also scored only six more points in that game than Miami put up against the high-pressure Syracuse defense.
The Orange clearly have what it takes to compete with almost any team in the country. They just need a complete team effort with good passing and smart shots all around.
The Orange (and the Hurricanes) are all but locked in the NCAA tournament. Syracuse is currently projected to be an 11 seed by college basketball expert Joe Lunardi. Wednesday they will have their chance to put all of the pieces together and improve their seeding, but they'll have to do it at the Barclay's Center in Brooklyn.
The Orange are just 2-7 on the road against ACC opponents this year. Maybe a neutral site will serve them better.
The winner of Wednesday's game will go on to face the ACC regular season champion North Carolina Tar Heels.