We’re just a couple days away from the start of the Syracuse Orange men’s basketball season. And while predictions and expectations haven’t meant much for this program in recent seasons, we never said OUR predictions didn’t hold some weight.
Below, you’ll find TNIAAM staff predictions on how many games we’re winning and where this season wraps up. Think you can do this better? Share your own prediction in the comments.
Michael Lehr (18-13, 8-10)
This is an okay team that Jim Boeheim will make in to a good team, and that's just fine. I think Syracuse learns to score early, and we'll see the zone struggle at the start (as always). As the season goes on, the press will become Boeheim’s biggest weapon but teams are going to figure it out and that's where SU will get beat. The season is going to rely on who can produce offensively, whether that be the leaders (Frank Howard/Tyus Battle) or the guys with a lot to prove (Oshae Brissett/Geno Thorpe). They'll pull out a few wins that give us hope, and lose a couple that kill us to finish the season just above average. Don't expect W's against Kansas or Maryland in the only truly tough non ACC games.
Corey Crisan (18-16, 8-10)
The men’s hoops team is interesting. I️m mostly intrigued by Oshae Brissett and his transition into Jim Boeheim’s system. Brissett is a very highly-regarded prospect for a lot of reasons, and rightfully so. Geno Thorpe should make an impact, and Tyus Battle has the keys to the car. Hopefully Boeheim lets him drive it. Conference play should be interesting as always, but the Orange have a ways to go in order to compete.
Andrew Godnick (19-12, 11-7)
Postseason: NCAA Tournament round of 32
This will be a year of patience for the Syracuse Orange as they wait for their big name recruits to begin their year(s) of education next Winter. However, that doesn’t mean this will be a season of failure — rather, it will be a season of shocking upsets and big time moments. There will be the typical disappointing losses that will occur throughout the year, but the versatility this roster has will be too much to overlook. Tyus Battle is going to be thrown into the fire, and the way he responds will truly decide this team’s fate. Be ready for heart breaking losses and heart-pounding wins, as this year will look similar to last year, except a birth to the Big Dance will be earned this time around.
Ben Sigel (18-13, 8-10)
Syracuse basketball will be better than people think this season. If you look at the non-conference schedule, the Orange will have trouble with Kansas and Maryland — but should take care of business other than those two. They’ll likely win a few ACC games they shouldn’t but lose a few too. I have SU at 17 wins heading into the ACC Tournament. They’ll have to win at least one, probably two, in Brooklyn to have a chance at the NCAA Tournament.
James Szuba (20-13, 9-9)
The Orange will get its first ACC Tournament win in four tries before falling in its next game. As bullish as I am on Boeheim, I just don't see a way in which Syracuse reaches the NCAA Tournament with so little experience in what should be a top-two league in the country. This will mark an important rebuild year as Syracuse will have everyone back in 2018-19 sans Geno Thorpe and (likely) Tyus Battle. Maybe I'm hedging here, but I think the NCAA Tournament is a bit of a stretch even with 20 wins as the bubble should be stronger this season when benchmarked to last year. If Boeheim has taught us anything though, it's that his never-say-die approach will always have Syracuse in the hunt.
John Cassillo (21-13, 10-8)
Postseason: NCAA Tournament round of 64
Syracuse’s ACC schedule provides plenty of chances for wins. Unfortunately, they’re all against poor teams. Last year, the Orange fell short of the NCAAs by way of lacking quality road wins and they’ll be in the same situation again without a couple upsets. Things may take some time to come together in non-conference play, but I’ll take the losses to Kansas and Maryland if it helps lessen the damage later. SU wins an ACC Tournament game and does just enough to impress the committee, but loses in round one.
Now it’s your turn...
What’s your 2017-18 Syracuse basketball season prediction?
This poll is closed
Surprise Sweet 16 trip
Round of 32, which is fine
NCAA Tournament bid
NIT and hating it