The off-season, or what I like to call “silly season”, is in full effect. Bovada, a sports betting website, has released their odds for every team to win the basketball national championship next season. Syracuse comes in at 50-1, the school with the 20th best odds of cutting down the nets.
This is probably going to change over the next seven months but it also reflects what many people and organizations are saying about Syracuse. This team is (probably) going to be very good next season. ESPN ranked Syracuse as the 17th best team in the nation and Sports’s Illustrated’s Seth Davis put the Orange at 15 on his way-too-early top 25.
When you think about it, it is hard NOT to be optimistic about this team’s prospects. Of course, much of this hinges on Malachi Richardson returning for next season. The starting five should be stronger next season and the Orange will have a little bit more off the bench.
Before Orange fans get too excited, it should be noted that Bovada gives five ACC schools better odds to win it all than Syracuse. Duke is the outright favorite at 9-2, followed in the ACC by Louisville, UNC, Vrginia, and Miami.
If Bovada completely nailed their odds and Syracuse finishes sixth in the ACC, that would certainly mark significant improvement. Syracuse entered the ACC tournament as the 9 seed this year, but actually finished with the 10th best record in the conference as Louisville was excluded from post-season play.
Finishing in sixth in the ACC would pretty much guarantee that there is no sweating on Selection Sunday, like there was this season.
With all of this said, a million things can, and likely will, change before the first tip in November, The Orange may add a couple of players to bolster the roster in Taurean Thompson and Grant Mullins. And, of course, there is still that possibility that Malachi Richardson makes the jump to the NBA.
It is too early to mean much, but clearly, most people agree, Syracuse is looking good for next season.