To say the 2014-15 season of Syracuse basketball was a disappointment would be an understatement. It was the first year Syracuse missed the NCAA Tournament (although it was on its own accord) since 2008, and NCAA sanctions weren’t the best icing on the top of the cake. This year the Orange hopes to get back into the torunament, but there’s still a lot of games to be played and flaws to be corrected. One of the biggest flaws; foul trouble.
Syracuse isn’t the deepest of teams. The fans know it, the media knows it, and Jim Boeheim knows it. When it comes to the positions down low, the Orange is especially short-stacked. Dajuan Coleman is really the only true center the team has, with Chino Obokoh coming of the bench whenever Coleman gets into foul trouble. The problem is that Coleman has gotten into foul trouble in both of the Orange’s first two games, and Obokoh is more of a four than a five.
Coleman has picked up a pair of early fouls against both Lehigh and St. Bonaventure, and ended up playing 13 and 14 minutes in those games, respectively. Five different players on the Orange have played more minutes in one game than Coleman has in both. Because of it, Obokoh has had to play more minutes than Boeheim would like. Chino can’t do anything on the floor offensively, and should really be on the floor only when Coleman needs a break. Tyler Lydon has also picked up minutes because of Coleman’s foul trouble, but he’s another player who isn’t a true center.
The fact of the matter is this: the Orange don’t have enough big men. Pascal Chukwu is sidelined for the year because of his transfer, and the NCAA took Moustapha Diagne away from Syracuse. If the Orange are going to make any noise this season, it’s going to be with Dajuan Coleman on the court. Without him, Syracuse is going to get banged up down low.
Posted: Nathan Dickinson