Seeding: Syracuse (3), WMU (14)
Day & Time: Thursday, March 20, 2:45 p.m. ET
Arena: First Niagara Center, Buffalo, NY
Radio: Syracuse IMG Network
WMU News: Hustle Belt
Rivalry: 2-0, Syracuse
Streak: 2, Syracuse (duh)
Odds: -13, Syracuse
First Meeting: Roosevelt Bouie scored 19 and the 9th-ranked Orangemen trounced Western Michigan, 93-71, in 1978.
Last Meeting: In 1988, Sherman Douglas scored 27 and Stephen Thompson scored 22 as the No. 3 Orangemen trounced WMU, 94-71.
Head Coaches: SU: Jim Boeheim (38th Year, 945-315); WMU: Steve Hawkins (11th Year, 202-154)
Last Year: WMU finished the season 22–13, 10–6 in the MAC. They advanced to the semifinals of the MAC Tournament where they lost to Ohio. They were invited to the 2013 CBI where they defeated North Dakota State and Wyoming and advanced to the semis where they lost to George Mason.
This Year: (via HustleBelt…)
The Broncos finished as the regular season MAC co-champions with the Toledo Rockets. WMU was 23-9 overall and 14-4 in the MAC. They earned the league's #1 seed in the conference tournament due to a better record in division play. In the tournament, they staged an epic comeback to overcome an 18-point second-half deficit and beat Akron 64-60 in overtime. The following night, they won their first MAC title since 2004 with a strong 98-77 victory over #2 seed Toledo.
Head Coach Bio: After nine seasons as D-II Quincy's head coach, Hawkins too over at WMU in 2003. He took the team to the NCAA Tournament in his first season but the program has middling-to-poor seasons in the years that followed. In two of the previous three years, they went to the CBI, and now Hawkins has come full circle this year. He's led WMU to seven MAC West Division titles and is the 2014 MAC Coach of the Year.
"Fear Me, I've Killed Hundreds Of Timelords": Shayne Whittington (16.3 PPG) and David Brown (19.4 PPG) are the stars of the Bronco squad. Whittington is among the nation's best in defensive rebounds per game, double-doubles and field goal percentage. David Brown leads the MAC in free throws made (181) and PPG. He's also the most likely guy to start chucking threes while Austin Richie (8.0 PPG) is also known to shoot some threes.
If Syracuse Wins…: They'll have done what they were supposed to do. Bring on someone from the state of Ohio.
If Syracuse Loses…: We're gonna be reminded of this season every time Syracuse starts a year 15-0, 18-0, 20-0 until the end of days.
How Angry Will Trevor Cooney Make Me: Severely agitated.
Fun Fact: If Syracuse wins this game, they will either face Ohio State, where Greg Paulus is an assistant, or Dayton, where Allen Griffin is an assistant.
- 2014 NCAA Tournament, Syracuse vs. WMU: Tickets Are Still Available
- NCAA Tournament Bracket: Syracuse Earns No. 3 Seed In South Region
- 23 Seconds of Pain: Breaking Down the End of Syracuse vs. NC State
- Back on Track: No. 10 Syracuse Takes Down No. 3 Johns Hopkins 12-10
- 2014 NCAA Tournament Selection Show Open Thread: 'The Most Glorious of Days'