Syracuse football continues on Saturday, but first, the 2017-2018 Syracuse men’s basketball season tips off on Friday. Cornell will be visiting the Carrier Dome for its first and only game scheduled against the Orange this year.
Syracuse has won its last 37 games against Cornell. The Orange has dominated the color war with an all-time 58-19 record against the Big Red. The last time SU lost to cornell was in 1968.
Nevertheless, this is a brand new season. Nothing is decided yet. Here are three Cornell players to watch on Friday night:
If you did a double take, that’s okay. You read correctly: Jimmy Boeheim will start his college basketball career by playing against the team his father coaches. While Head Coach Jim Boeheim played for Syracuse and is now entering his 42nd year as Syracuse’s head coach and current-high-school-senior Buddy Boeheim has committed to play for Syracuse on his father’s team starting next year, forward Jimmy Boeheim did not get the same kind of looks from the Orange.
But that doesn’t mean he isn’t good. As a high school senior at Jamesville Dewitt High School here in Central New York, Jimmy was an all-Central New York selection. He went on to play one prep season at the New Hampton School before entering college. In high school, Jimmy averaged 22.3 points as a senior, making the sectional all-tournament team in each of his final two seasons. Jimmy served as team captain as a senior and was named MVP at the Hoop Hall Classic and Peppino’s Classic. Jimmy left high school as an okay shooter, going on to average 8.7 points per game while shooting 42 percent overall and 32 percent from the 3-point arc at New Hampton School. Jimmy ties for the tallest Cornell basketball player at 6’8”.
Now, Jimmy debuts for the Big Red. It’s one of those scenes that almost could not be better written if it were a movie. There will be an interesting dynamic on the court and courtside on Friday.
Look out for #3 in red.
Matt Morgan is a 6’2” guard entering his junior season at Cornell. In both of his college seasons so far, Morgan has made the the All-Ivy League Second Team. Morgan is an excellent shooter all over the court, and if Cornell had a better record than the 8-21 it finished with last year, one would say Morgan was a big reason for his team’s success. He has led the Ivy League in scoring in each of the past two years, last season posting 18.1 points per game while shooting 46 percent overall, 38 percent from 3-point range and 86 percent from the free-throw line. Morgan scored at least 20 points in 11 games and scored double digits in all but one game he played last year, leading his team in 16 of the Big Red’s 29 games. In Cornell’s exhibition game against SUNY Cortland on Saturday, Morgan scored 25 points in 23 minutes of play.
He led the Big Red in minutes last season (more than 32 per game and nearly seven more than the player with the second-most minutes). He also was second on the team in steals (22). As if he wasn’t getting the ball in his hands and putting it in the net already, Morgan certainly will now as an upperclassman, especially with ground to make up with the loss of third-leading team scorer Robert Hatter to graduation after last season.
Keep an eye on #10 in Big Red action.
That second leading scorer last year was forward Stone Gettings, averaging 12.4 points per game last season. Gettings is a junior this year and stands at 6’8” tall—he’s a big man who can get to the rim. He led Cornell last year in rebounds with nearly six per game. He was also third on the Big Red in steals last season (21) behind Hatter (23) and Morgan (22). Last season, Ranked 14th in the Ivy League in scoring, eighth in rebounding, eighth in assists and sixth in blocked shots. Expect him to pair up with Morgan throughout the game to put up some numbers.
Watch for #13 on the hardwood.
Published: David Edelstein