Syracuse vs. Rutgers: The Scarlet Numbers

More often than not, when the Syracuse Orange plays the Rutgers Scarlet Knights in basketball, they're less Scarlet Pimpernel and more scarlet pimple.

Syracuse is 37-9 against the Knights all-time and hasn't tasted their greasy defeat since 2003 (which, invariably, will now encourage a few "maybe we SHOULD lose to them" remarks). While SU has won every time since then, there was a rough patch between 2005 and 2007 when every game seemed to come down to the final minutes. However, since 2009, it's been a whole lotta cakewalks.

However, that doesn't mean we should expect the same this time, even if they're 12-14.

As you would expect, the RAC will be sold out. The good news is that it probably will include a fair amount of Syracuse fans. The other good news is that Rutgers is in the midst of a tailspin as their season spirals out of control. They've lost four in a row and seven of their last nine.

It's a shame for them as, if there was ever a season for Rutgers to make a move, this was it. Instead, South Florida is the one making strides and Knights will look to the future once more.The rest of the season is just about trying to get back to .500.

They seemed to making that stride early on with impressive wins over Florida, UConn and Pittsburgh. Since then, Pittsburgh dropped off a cliff, UConn is following them and Florida has been revealed as a bit of a pretender (as we know, having seen our win over them feel cheapened).

The Knights haven't broken the 70-point scoring barrier since December, which doesn't bode well for them if the Orange can get back into their transitional offense. The Knights are also among the conference's worst teams in offensive efficiency, boast only two scorers who average double-digits and aren't exactly known for their three-point shooting prowess. In other words, so long as SU doesn't beat themselves, they should be able to walk away with this one.

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