We're still in a golden age for Syracuse Orange basketball. No, we may not have won any of the crapshoot NCAA Tournament Championships, but under Boeheim and co., the Orange have found a way to churn out NBA lottery picks, play some of the most exciting games in program history and play the recruiting game with the best of them. So with a young team finally getting the hang of this ACC thing, what are we most excited for this season?
Steve Haller: I think one of the main things I want to look at is if we take this perimeter oriented team and develop it into something that can play the outside game while banging down low as well. That's a tall task that will hinge pretty solely on Dejuan Coleman, Chino and Tyler Lydon. Roberson will get his and you know what you're getting in the Cooneys, G and Joseph. If Richardson can play a diverse game and DC2 eases into his role and back to health, I really want to see where the offense evolves to pair with this crazy long zone.
Kenny Lacy: I'm looking forward to seeing how Tyler Lydon fits into the offense. I think with the perimeter oriented offense the other two freshmen won't having an issue finding their niche, leaving Lydon to have the most trouble. While Lydon does have the skill set to be a perimeter threat, the lack of depth down low is going to force him to play a less perimeter oriented game. I'm really looking forward to how his game translates into this offense.
Andy Pregler: I want SO BADLY to be that team that shoots it's way into a game we really shouldn't win. I'm tired of seeing it happen against the Orange and would love to give Duke, UNC or St. John's a taste of what almost always happens against the Orange.
James Szuba: Hopefully getting back to the NCAA Tournament. There is plenty to be excited about this season, including the three freshmen. But above all else I'm excited to see this team play on college basketball's biggest stage.
Andrew Carey: The thing I'm most looking forward to from this team is their speed. I really think guys like Michael Gbinije, Kaleb Joseph, Lydon, Tyler Roberson, and Malachi Richardson can all run the floor extremely well and finish. I think we might see a team that gets out in transition and tries to beat teams. Also I am curious to see if this team can really win games by relying on the three, like Boeheim says he wants to do.
Kevin Wall: Honestly, a more explosive offense will be fun to watch. The last two seasons has seen Syracuse content to play at the tempo of their opponents. I don't want to see the Orange playing games in the 50s just because their opponents wants it that way. I think the depth of this roster can allow SU to be more aggressive.
Michael Burke: Watching this team shoot 3-pointer after 3-pointer. Like Jim Boeheim said at media day, that's how less-talented teams can beat better teams. Sure, there will be games where SU can't hit a shot, and those games won't be pretty. But if the Orange get hot for a few games in a row at the right time, it could spell a deep postseason run.
Joe Leathersich: I'm most looking forward to seeing how Coleman does this year for a few reasons. 1) Center is the position with the least depth so if Coleman can't hang, it'll be interesting to see how Boeheim adjusts. 2) The coaching staff is extremely confident in his knee and if he can stay healthy, I think this system is one that Coleman can thrive in. He won't be asked to do as much as past centers so if he can command the front court grabbing offensive boards, the Orange can be successful.
Claudia Ceva: I'm looking forward to many competitive and fun games. When talking about a specific game, I'd have to go with rekindling our Georgetown rivalry. I think it'll be a more enjoyable season than last year.
John Cassillo: Fun basketball again. It doesn't need to be at the same levels we witnessed with the Wes Johnson team, or those transition-heavy Eric Devendrof squads. But a team that plays some long defense and shoots jumpers with some effectiveness should be a celebrated change for any Orange fan having sat through recent, slogging seasons.
Dan Lyons: POINTS and HYPOTHETICAL TACOS. I appreciated the Tyler Ennis team and even enjoyed the Rakeem Christmas show for what it was last season, but man, our last few seasons have been lacking in the offense department. This team probably won't be as good as 09-10, 11-12, or 12-13, but it should be a blast to watch.
Brian Pilatzke: The shorter shot clock. It will only make the zone better and will hopefully make the offense less sluggish. It's been a while since Syracuse had so many shooters, so hopefully that will open the floor and lead to a more efficient offense.
Matt Constas: Outside of the potential for more March games this season, I am excited to see players take a lot of threes whether they go in or not. I love the idea of the Orange taking more shots from outside becuse their offense has been bad and boring the past couple of seasons. I hope that maybe some more support will lead to Trevor taking smarter shots, resulting in his most efficient season yet. Within reason, I hope almost everybody is taking and making threes!
Brian Tahmosh: I'm looking forward to watching a team that I think will be able to score. Even though a 3-point-oriented offense can be frustrated at times, with Lydon, Richardson, Cooney, Gbinije, Roberson, and maybe even a healthy DaJuan Coleman, there are no black holes in that group, offensively. Now, let's just hope the young guys (and Coleman) live up to their reputations.
So what are you guys excited for? Let us know!
This is the second in a series of season previews for the Syracuse Orange Basketball team. Check out previous posts if you missed them: Who Will Be Number 2? Are You Ready for Hop?