Do you hear that? That’s the sound of a basketball pounding against the hardwood court inside the Dome.
Even with all the hype SU Football is getting (and rightfully so), Syracuse is and more likely than not will always be a basketball town. Both the men’s and women’s basketball teams took the floor at Monroe Madness in Rochester last weekend. Head Coaches Felisha Legette-Jack and Jim Boeheim along with a select few players flew down to Charlotte to represent the Orange at ACC Media Days earlier this week. Now, both squads have their annual Media Day on Friday, followed by Orange Tip-off inside the JMA Wireless Dome, when both teams will introduce themselves to the Syracuse community for the first time in 2022-23. Here’s a breakdown of what to look out for from both squads.
Starting with Legette-Jack and company, the big thing to keep an eye on is how the vibes around the program have changed. Ever since the fallout from the mass exodus of transfers in Spring 2021 and what happened with Quentin Hillsman, things have gone south in a hurry. After eight straight NCAA Tournament appearances with a trip to the National Title game mixed in there, the Orange under an “acting” Head Coach in Vonn Read couldn’t muster a win in postseason play. This program needed a jolt, and Legette-Jack has done that even though her team hasn’t taken the court yet. She’s been very active trying to get the community excited about SU Women’s Basketball again, hyping up a crowd at a Women’s Lacrosse Game days after her hiring as well as throwing out the first pitch at a Syracuse Mets game in August. The question is, has it rubbed off on the roster, veterans and newbies alike?
As for the men’s squad, the most intriguing thing is the role the freshmen are going to play individually and collectively. It’s no secret Boeheim doesn’t love throwing freshmen into the fire the second they arrive on campus, but this year he may have no choice. Only four players on this year’s roster (Joe Girard, Jesse Edwards, Symir Torrence, and Benny Williams) saw more than ten minutes per game a season ago. It goes without saying that Boeheim now has to lean on his young guns more so than in years past. Some college basketball insiders have predicted that Judah Mintz, the highest-rated recruit in the class, will start at point guard, along with one of Chris Bunch or Justin Taylor at the 3. But what happens with the rest? Will guys like Quadir Copeland, Maliq Brown, and Peter Carey see meaningful minutes off the bench or will they be riding the pine pony?
We’ll have you covered throughout Media Day as well as Orange Tip-off on Friday. Keep it locked to our Twitter for updates all afternoon. Legette-Jack and the women’s team will be up at 2, after that Boeheim and his squad will address the media at 4. Then, Orange Tip-off is scheduled to take place inside the Dome from 7-9:15. After the events of the day conclude, we’ll host a Twitter space to recap all the action.