The Syracuse Orange and St. Bonaventure Bonnies renew their rivalry tonight. Dating all the way back to the 20's, these two teams have played 26 times with the Orange besting the Bonnies 23 times. SU is favored by
18 9 in tonight's matchup in the Carrier Dome. Let's see what everyone expects to happen...
Syracuse 75 - St. Bonaventure 70
I think this will be another close game but with more offense. I'm not sure if this is another year the Bonnies make a conference tournament run, but I bet they will bring their A game to the Dome with a chance to upend what looks like a somewhat vulnerable Syracuse attack. I think we see the Orange embrace the small lineup and try to shoot their way to a win while sacrificing some defense along the way.
Syracuse 67 - St. Bonaventure 52
I think the 3's will be falling a little more than they did against Lehigh. Guys like Cooney, Richardson, and Gbinije will likely lead the Orange like they did against Lehigh. I also expect Tyler Roberson to have a nice bounce back game, as he Coleman and Lydon will patrol the paint. The Bonnies could give the Orange a game for a while, but ultimately the Orange's 2-3 zone and athletic ability will take over. I will say, there has already been a bunch of upsets in college basketball this year with Virginia, Georgetown, and Wisconsin all already losing a game.
Syracuse 65 - St. Bonaventure 55
Syracuse will have a significant height advantage as the Bonnies run mostly three guard sets, and their starting guards are 6'0", 6'1" and 6'4" respectively. Unlike Lehigh, who had a legit big man in Kempton, St. Bonaventure's forwards are all 6'8" or shorter. Syracuse must use that height advantage and rebound well, especially on the offensive glass. The Orange must improve on two things from the Lehigh game: (1) improve their 3 point shooting percentage; and (2) establishing a scoring presence from the low block. Tyler Roberson, Dajuan Coleman or even Tyler Lydon must step up and provide the Orange with SOME scoring balance. Ultimately, I think the Orange do shoot better this game, but let Bonnies hang around for a while.
Syracuse 78 - St. Bonaventure 60
I think Syracuse wins easily tonight by taking advantage of its height across the board. St. Bonaventure will be outmatched physically, which will allow Syracuse to rebound against them. Gbinije will have a big night, utilizing his height on the Bonnies' smaller guards. Syracuse will force St. Bonaventure into tough shots and the Orange will shoot better than it did against Lehigh. Easy win for Syracuse at home.
Syracuse 79 - St. Bonaventure 70
I expect Syracuse to have a better offensive game, but this should be a relatively close game. The Bonnies have a couple of solid forwards in Dion Wright and Denzel Gregg and they should provide a strong test for the Orange tonight.
Syracuse 72 - St. Bonaventure 51
The Bonnies shouldn't be much of a test for the Orange, who will get to 2-0 with ease. Look for Syracuse to pull away early in the second half behind a more successful 3-point attack than we saw against Lehigh. Even better, SU does just enough to secure the first Taco Time of the season.
Syracuse 68 - St. Bonaventure 57
Syracuse is a young team still feeling their way around this season, and that was apparent against Lehigh. St. Bonaventure my be highly reliant on Dion Wright, but that doesn't mean they're a one-trick pony either. Expect them to find some creative ways to attack the zone early before the Orange settle in. Offensively, SU has to shoot better than they did last game if they want to win by a healthy margin. Malachi and Silent G going off is fine. But others need to contribute for this to be sustainable.
Syracuse 70 - St. Bonaventure 58
I'd like to think the Orange start getting their act together more and more with each game. Some more shots fall, some of the younger guys figure out their roles and we see a more complete game all around. The Bonnies should be able to hang with us for a while but there's no reason we can't pull away late.