If you told me that Syracuse could possibly lose five games after a 25-0 start, I would not have believed you.
But that is exactly what could happen with a matchup against Florida State in Tallahassee on Selection Sunday.
Georgia Tech pulled off the upset on Senior Night over the Orange 67-62. This team and fan base is running with emotions right now and rightfully so. Syracuse is 1-5 in their last five games with embarrassing home losses to both Boston College and Georgia Tech. Losses on the road against both ranked Duke and Virginia squads is one thing, but against teams far from making the NCAA Tournament is inexcusable. Yes, Jerami Grant did not play (back pain), but this team has too much talent to lose in this fashion. Said Boeheim:
“I don’t think this is a defensive problem. I think we have an offensive problem. [Jerami Grant’s back problem] It changes what we are. It makes C.J. do more and puts him in positions where he has to do more. It just throws what we do off a little bit.”
C.J. Fair scored 28 points and had eight boards in his final game at the Carrier Dome. Tyler Ennis also added 18 points with seven assists. The issue for the Orange was nobody else could help them out. Continuing his struggles, Trevor Cooney went 1-of-8 from behind the arc. Cooney said after the game:
“I look at it as a game of inches. Inch one way, inch another way and the ball is in. Everyone is going to count us out now and we know it. We have to come ready to work everyday and keep getting better and better.”
Georgia Tech went 47.1 percent from the field as Trae Golden led the Yellow Jackets with 16 points. Syracuse almost got back into the game with 3:00 minutes left after a few missed Georgia Tech free throws. The Yellow Jackets buckled down at the end and hit shots from the charity stripe to put the game out of reach.
Boeheim finally acknowledged Syracuse’s great start to the season:
“I would have taken 21-4 after 25 games the way we played. It is a tremendous tribute to these guys and what they were able to do in those games.”
25-0 is a distant memory after the play of the last five games, but if Grant get back to full strength in time for both tournaments along with Baye Moussa Keita, Syracuse could fly under the radar and make a strong push.
Posted by: Zephan Mayell