The Syracuse Orange won a Big East game in solid fashion behind good performances from various players and clamped down defensively to secure the victory.
So that's what it's supposed to look like.
No. 9 Syracuse ended its two-game skid with a decisive 63-47 win over the No. 25 Irish on Monday night, extending their home-winning streak to 36 games.
C.J. Fair once again led the way with 18 point and 10 rebounds. While there's still a lot of basketball to play, Fair seems to have decided that if no one else is going to become the dependable double-double guy, it might as well be him.
Not that everyone else didn't contribute. Jerami Grant kept pace with his brother Jerian by scoring 14 points and grabbing six rebounds while Rakeem Christmas broke out with 12 points. Fair and Grant were the only Syracuse players to play all 40 minutes.
In fact, Fair hasn't missed a second since the Villanova game. The FIRST Villanova game:
"I haven’t come out since the first time we played Villanova,’’ Fair said, referring to SU’s game on Jan. 12. "I remember.’’
Brandon Triche and Michael Carter-Williams took a backseat in the scoring column (seven and five, respectively) but dished it out quite well (six and eight assists, respectively). Triche had a rough shooting outing, however, going 2-of-9.
Trevor Cooney earned six points with two three-pointers (2-of-6), including one with about eleven minutes left that put SU up 12 and seemed to lock down the lead.
Long-term, it remains to be seen if Syracuse can survive with a seven-man rotation (which was really a six-man rotation since Baye Keita played four minutes). Short-term, if enough players on the roster are doing something, anything, well, then the Orange can win Big East games. And for now, that's all they need to do.
Up next? St. John's on Sunday. Maybe James Southerland will be back and maybe he won't. But either way, we know the sky isn't falling.