Day & Time: Friday, December 22, 2017, 7:00 p.m. ET
Location: Carrier Dome, Syracuse, N.Y.
TV/Streaming: ACC Network Extra/WatchESPN
Radio: Syracuse IMG Network, WAER 88.3, Sirius 93/XM 193
St. Bonaventure blog: Mid Major Madness
Rivalry: 24-3, Syracuse leads
Current Streak: 14, Orange
First Meeting: Syracuse invited St. Bonaventure over in 1923, and proceeded to beat them, 29-12. One St. Bonaventure player tried to take a shot at Atticus Leo Andrew Rautins’s junk, nearly leading to fisticuffs at the gymnasium.
Last Meeting: Rather than attacking anyone below the belt, the Bonnies and Orange just played a regular ol’ basketball game in 2015. Syracuse won 79-66, led by Michael Gbinije’s 23 points and Tyler Roberson’s 12 boards. Each of the last two times SU has faced St. Bonaventure, that season (2015-16, 2009-10) has worked out pretty well for the Orange.
Head Coaches: SU: Jim Boeheim (42nd year, 1,014-358); St. Bonaventure: Mark Schmidt (11th year, 175-146)
Coach Bio: Schmidt played for Boston College (woof), then after a slight break from the college game, he took an assistant gig with DII Saint Michael’s. After two seasons there, he moved on to Penn State, then Loyola (Maryland) and Xavier, where he stayed for seven years. He got his first head coaching job at Robert Morris, and after six years of .500ish basketball, he took the Bonnies job. Though things started slow there, he’s built them into a bit of an Atlantic 10 contender now.
Last Year: The Bonnies’ season started off pretty rough, earning losses to Florida and Little Rock in November, then also picking up Ls to UNC-Wilmington and Canisius (yikes) in non-conference play. Though St. Bonaventure finished 11-7 in league play, they were heavily reliant on winning the A-10 to get an NCAA Tournament bid. It didn’t happen, as they fell to Rhode Island in the quarterfinals of the league championship.
Last Game: Northeastern stuck around for about the first 10 minutes, then St. Bonaventure pulled away and that was that in an 84-65 victory. The Bonnies hit 48 percent of their shots and were pros from the free throw line (89.3 percent). Five players scored in double digits on the game, including Matt Mobley, who led them with 23 points.
"Fear Me, I've Killed Hundreds of Timelords": Pick your poison between the team’s tandem of excellent guards. Mobley’s your shooter, using volume to put up over 18 points per game. Even if he’s not overly efficient, he’s still going to take his fair share of jumpers (and threes, which he hits at a 37-percent clip). Opposite him is Jaylen Adams, who’s the better three-point shooter and a distributor as well. He’s put up 17.2 points per game in five appearances this year. But the way SU has failed to defend the three so far should get you worried about him a bit.
If Syracuse Wins: The Orange continue to beat everyone they’re supposed to. That may not sound like glowing praise, but it’s a positive step for a young squad that still has some kinks to work out before ACC play begins.
If Syracuse Loses: Well, we were told that the Bonnies were going to own New York college basketball this year, so I guess they were right...
Fun Fact No. 1: Former Syracuse player Chinoso Obokoh played for St. Bonaventure last season after grad-transferring. He played in just five games for the Bonnies, however.
Fun Fact No. 2: Schmidt is the third-longest tenured DI basketball coach in New York state. Obviously Jim Boeheim’s first at 42 seasons, and he’s followed by and Albany’s Will Brown (17). After those two, Schmidt is the only one who’s been at their current job longer than 10 years.