So yes, SU defeated Robert Morris last night 87-81 but it was no walk in the Dome. Just take the word of those who were there. As the Daily Orange Sports Blog puts it, "while the Colonials played with a lot of heart, Syracuse just plain stunk in this one." Even still, Donte Greene scored a season-high 27 points in the win, forced to make up for the absence of Jonny Flynn due to his aforementioned ailment. Robert Morris stayed in the game with, what else, three-point shooting, going 16-41 from beyond the arc. Despite a 51-40 lead with just under 18:00 left in the game, the Orange could not break away from the Colonials thanks to turnovers and the inability to stop the three's from raining.
Paul Harris had 19 points and 10 rebounds, Scoop Jardine had 15 points as he covered Flynn's floor spot, Kristof Ongenaet had 13points and Arinze Onuaku had seven points and 10 rebounds.
As for Flynn, we had heard rumors earlier in the week that his back was acting up but no one seemed to mention the severity until after the fact. According to Paul Harris, "A lot of people didn't know that after the Big East game, we had to push him out in a wheelchair." YIKES. I guess it was inevitable that Flynn's body would start to break down under all that stress but that does not sound good in the slightest. Especially for a team so fraught with injuries already.
Boeheim says Flynn will play Thursday if the doctors cleared him but I'm no sure it's worth the risk (Axe seems to agree). I'd like to prove to the nation that SU basketball is still worth watching but not at the expense of the guy whose going to be our floor leader for the next few years. We shall see...
As for this Thursday, we'll be hosting the Maryland Terrapins who defeated Tubby smith's Minnesota team last night. It's a match-up of recent NCAA champs...in the 2nd round of the NIT...awesome. And its on the same night as NCAA Tournament action, which is...weird. But who knows, maybe someone will see these two programs playing each other playing, be fooled into thinking it's an 8-9 game and then suddenly freak out when they can't remember who they picked in their office pool before convincing themselves "I'm pretty sure I picked Syracuse...yeah, I have them going to the Elite 8...cool, cool..."
Oh and if you're looking ahead, the winner of that game will play the winner of Akron and UMass for the right to play in the NIT Final Four. Would be nice to get another shot at UMass and square up with for the loss earlier this season.
(AP Photo/Kevin Rivoli)