The Syracuse Men’s Basketball team has had a really interesting season so far. The ‘Cuse has had its fair share of ups and downs yet somehow it is still just mid-January. The Orange currently sit at 13-5, a record that looks really solid from the outside. Considering there are currently three teams in the top 15 of the AP poll that has four losses, just five is very good. Yet, Syracuse is still on the outside looking in. Not just on the outside of the AP poll or the NCAA tournament, but the outside of the bubble conversation.
The biggest reason is that Syracuse just doesn’t have a great win. The Orange have avoided some of the horrible losses of the last few years. But avoiding bad losses isn’t going to get it done for the NCAA tournament committee. What makes this season challenging for the Orange is the lack of opportunity for those good wins. Syracuse only plays one more ranked team all season, and that game is at home against North Carolina.
So, what SU has to do is win enough games where it is impossible to ignore. If a team with a brand like Syracuse has from the ACC has 22+ wins, then the NCAA tournament committee can’t ignore the Orange. Winning the games on the schedule is the only way to improve your NET rankings. Teams and fans can complain all they want about the NET but the only thing that can be done to change it is win.
The next to games for Syracuse are two massive ones because they’re against two solid ACC squads. Florida State and NC State are both 5-2 in conference play. If the Orange win the next two to move to 15-5, then have a game against Boston College up next, they’d most likely enter Feburary with 16 wins. It is impossible to ignore Syracuse if the Orange have 16 wins entering Feburary.