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Syracuse Basketball: The Guarantee Fairy Might Come By and Leave a Quarter

A win over Florida State on Saturday would complete a solid resume for Syracuse, but it doen't guarentee anything.

Bob Donnan-USA TODAY Sports

If the Syracuse Orange defeat the Florida State Seminoles on Saturday, they'll have twenty overall wins and a 10-8 ACC record. On paper, that seems like it puts the Orange into the NCAA Tournament.

Tell that to the 2006-2007 Syracuse basketball team. That team finished the regular season 21-9 and 10-6 in the Big East. Not the greatest record we've ever seen, but, certainly seemed like enough to guarantee an NCAA bid. They then won one BET game before losing the second one. Not special, but, again, at 22-10, the Orange seemed guaranteed for an NCAA berth.

And then, they didn't.

The Orange have certainly been included in almost all bracketology projections. The Bracket Matrix still has them as a 10-seed. They very reasonably should make the NCAAs.


You could make a case. You could make a case that the team peaked in November and doesn't have many resume wins since. You could make a case that losses to St. John's and Georgetown are unforgivable. You could make a case that the Orange only went 2-5 against the top ACC squads and racked up wins over teams they're supposed to beat.

Not that I'm saying the Orange don't deserve a spot. I think they've worked their way back into the mix. But even with a win over FSU, there's still the business of the ACC Tournament. And that doesn't even get into bubble-busters who win conference tournaments and other teams with similar resumes who make a run late.

If you asked me to place a bet right now, I'd say barring a loss on Saturday and a loss in the first game of the ACCT, the Orange will be in. But if you need a guarantee, I'm not going to give you that. I know better.