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Syracuse vs. Fordham: Orange Need Rebounding Improvements

If anyone's going to come back to haunt the Syracuse Orange on Saturday when they open the 2011-2012 season against the Fordham Rams, it's Ryan Hage. The 6'2" senior captain grew up Orange and initially made the Rams' squad as a walk-on.

When he was 13, he broke his leg. His dad took him to an SU practice, and his favorite player signed his cast.

He still has that cast with Carmelo Anthony's signature.

"I love Syracuse hoops," the Brockport High graduate says.

35-50 relatives are expected to the Dome for cheer him on, even if spends most of the night on the bench.

You try not to read too much into the exhibition games but watching the Orange get out-rebounded by a tiny St. Rose team. Boeheim thinks it was a mixture of match-ups and lack of aggression.

"I think the one thing that happens when you play a smaller team, you get spread out and you get stationary," Boeheim said. "And I thought they did a great job of getting us spread out and then rebounding. We did not rebound because we were kind of spread out and we weren't aggressive."

Still, that's not good enough for the Orange and they know it:

"The last two years, we had athletic guys at the 3 and the 5, and we should outrebound everybody," Triche said. "All that comes down to is if we want it or not and our energy and our passion for the game. Just being lazy out there is definitely not going to cut it."

The game (4pm ET) will be televised on Time Warner Cable locally as well as SNY, good news for those of us out-of-towners.

For more on the 2011-2012 Syracuse Orange basketball team, including player profiles, statistical analysis and articles on the upcoming year featuring the folks in this podcast, make sure you check out Orange Tip-Off.