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2018-19 Syracuse Basketball: Five Bold Predictions

 

  1. Oshae Brissett Leads SU in Scoring

Brissett is going to take a massive leap this year. He has improved his three-point shot and rounded out his offensive game. With all due respect to Tyus Battle, Brissett might be the best player on this team by the end of the year. Now, I still want Battle taking the last shot and he is the unquestioned leader of this team. That won’t change. However, don’t be surprised if Brissett averages say 18 points per game and Battle finishes with 16 or so.

  1. Buddy Boeheim Starts in ACC Play

I’m all in on Buddy’s game. The dude has one of the prettiest shots I’ve seen at Syracuse. Granted, he’s only a freshman and being a good shooter can only get you so far. But, he has size and already knows how to play the 2-3 zone, at least you would think so. Plus, he’s going to start out the season playing major minutes with those injuries and get the chance to prove his worth.

  1. Elijah Hughes Spends Time in Jim’s Doghouse

I’ve also been very impressed with Hughes in preseason play. His shot selection still leaves a little to be desired though. I know we don’t have much of a sample size to judge. But, there have been a lot of long two-point jumpers and not enough driving to the basket so far. He oozes potential and will have some games where he carries the Orange to wins. Just based on the action we’ve seen so far, it seems like he might be an emotional rollercoaster for fans. Jim also has that one guy he puts in the doghouse for at least a portion of the season, shoutout Tyler Roberson. Hughes might be that guy this year. That being said, he still will start and put up numbers regardless.

  1. Bourama Sidibe Falls Out of The Rotation

With Dolezaj, Carey and Buddy coming off the bench right now–Assuming they’re going with a Frank, Tyus, Hughes, Brissett, Chukwu starting five when everyone is healthy–that’s already eighth guys. That’s kinda unchartered territory for Jim in conference play to begin with. Nine would really be out of character for him. It’s weird to see a world where Sidibe isn’t playing because he is healthier this year and really the only logical backup center. However, I think his offense is still a liability. Given that and the fact I can’t picture Jim playing nine come tournament time, I bet he opts to go with a small-ball lineup and have Brissett play the five when Chukwu isn’t out there. Nine could happen but if it doesn’t, Sidibe feels like the odd man out.

  1. The Defense Finishes As One of Best in School History

Statistically it’s tough to compare because the amount of scoring in college basketball has changed so much throughout history. But just in terms of where Syracuse ranks in the country in total defense and points per game, this might be one of the best in the Boeheim era. He’s had a lot of good ones too so that’s saying something. Outside of Virginia and maybe Cincinnati, Syracuse has one of the best defenses in the country on paper. They have size. They have quickness and they have veterans who know how to play the Boeheim defense. All hail the 2-3 zone.

1 Comment

1 Comment

  1. alan randall

    November 7, 2018 at 2:03 pm

    How short your memory is, before Sidibe’s kneee injury he had a game with like 28/12 and actually was the reason we didn’t loose that game. Why not 9? better rim protector than Brisshett, he’s a hustle guy who needs minutes. Would hate to loose this guy. If we do, who steps up next yr. at the 5?

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