Jim Boeheim is less than pleased.
"I'm not in a good mood," Boeheim said Tuesday. "Hopefully, that'll change."
For the sake of the Syracuse players, coaching staff, the Boeheim family, the Syracuse media attending the post-game press conference and the Egyptian people, Syracuse needs to win tonight when they face-off against No. 6 UConn in Hartford.
"Come tomorrow night, we're going to be fired up," said Syracuse forward Rick Jackson, who's averaging 13.2 points and 11.5 rebounds per game. "We've got something to prove."
Then again, so does Kemba Walker:
"They need a win. We need a win, too," Kemba Walker said. "We're just two teams who have come off a loss and are desperate to win."
Want to stop Walker and the Huskies? It's simple. Play trademark Syracuse 2-3 Zone defense. And play it about as well as you've played it all season:
The problem is this: In the span of four games, SU's 2-3 zone defense has gone from strength to liability. Triche knows this because, even when the Orange shoots the lights out — as it did against Marquette (57 percent) Saturday — the Orange never held a lead in the game.
A year ago, Walker took his own approach to cracking the zone. Instead of looking for his shooters on the outside, the 6-foot-1 Walker took the ball right to the heart of the zone and, along with teammate Jerome Dyson, had much second-half success. The pair finished with 33 points and 11 assists and almost led the Huskies to a dramatic comeback after trailing by 16.
The Orange can quell a lot of issues and concerns with a win tonight. A loss here and, well, I don't know. It's practically uncharted territory. So I'd rather not think of that until I have to. Instead, I will dream of world where Syracuse beats UConn, good conquers evil and Juli Boeheim sleeps soundly tonight.
- Orange Scouting Report: Syracuse at Connecticut...Mike Waters
- Syracuse at Connecticut breakdown...Daily Orange
- Orange Faces No. 6/7 Connecticut Next...SUAthletics.com
- Connecticut's speedy guard Kemba Walker will be a handful for Orange...Donna Ditota
- Syracuse needs win against UConn to stop freefall...Rochester Democrat & Chronicle
- For Syracuse, the defense now rests...ESPN
- Calhoun vs. Boeheim...Hartford Courant
- Dion in the doghouse...SU Juice Online
- Telling and misleading statistics from Syracuse’s three-game skid...SU Juice Online
- In which Orange::44 offers some nuanced reflections on UConn...The UConn Blog
- The Bet 2.0: The re-bettening...The UConn Blog