As of late, we’re pretty used to Syracuse Orange teams being ranked around here. So it’s fitting that with the women’s basketball season starting next week, SU is ranked there as well.
According to the preseason AP Poll, Syracuse comes in at No. 18 to start this season — and as Syracuse.com points out, it’s the highest they’ve debuted in the rankings since 2016, when they were 14th.
Though the Orange had a disappointing loss early in the NCAA Tournament last year, bringing back nearly everyone from last year’s surprising squad has the team elevating expectations once again. Last year’s full reset created questions around who would lead Syracuse without its previous group of stellar seniors. But with newcomers like Tiana Mangakahia leading the charge, the drop-off ended up being minimal for Quentin Hillsman’s team.
SU is projected to finish third in the ACC right now, and Mangakahi is one of the top guards in the nation. Newcomer Emily Engstler is also poised to potentially become one of the best freshman in the country.
More on that and the rest of your Syracuse links below:
Syracuse women’s basketball returns to AP preseason poll (Syracuse.com)
It is the fourth time in the past five seasons that SU has earned a spot in the preseason top-25. This is the Orange’s highest preseason ranking since debuting at No. 14 in 2016. Syracuse is one of six Atlantic Coast Conference teams ranked in the preseason poll with defending national champion Notre Dame claiming the top spot. Louisville is No. 5 while NC State (No. 17), Duke (No. 21) and Miami (No. 25) also earned spots in the top-25.
“We’ve always been close, but throughout this whole week, we’ve stuck together because the last thing that we wanted was to have the team divide or anything like that ever happen,” DeVito said on Tuesday. “So really, we wanted to stay closer together and really just be the best teammates that we could.”
Clemson is king in the ACC... so who’s the second-best team? (Richmond Times-Dispatch)
1) Syracuse (6-2, 3-2 ACC): Yes, the Orange’s magic is largely reserved for home games. Five of the team’s six wins this year have come at the Carrier Dome. Its only losses came in back-to-back weeks, playing competitively on the road at Clemson, falling 27-23 in Trevor Lawrence’s first game taking over for Kelly Bryant, then losing 44-37 at up and down Pittsburgh.
At first, Ferrin didn’t anticipate the position would limit his offensive production. He grew up playing as a false 9 striker, which meant he was a forward but roved the field as a midfielder. He called the positions “similar.” Syracuse used its midfielders — Ferrin, Jonathan Hagman and Delhommelle — to generate possession and chances. In his first 10 games, though, Ferrin scored only once, with it resulting from a penalty kick.
Wake Forest seizes backs-against-the-wall mentality, eyes flourish for final four games (Winston-Salem Journal)
“I think because we’re playing with a true freshman quarterback, the really encouraging thing with Sam (Hartman) is I think he keeps getting better,” Clawson said. “A lot of times freshman quarterbacks, they get to this point in the year and they’re fried. They’re burned out. It’s harder than they thought, the preparation, the week-in, week-out, the hits — what’s really encouraging is he gets better every week.”
Wake Forest coach Dave Clawson previews Syracuse game (Demon Deacons Digest)
Syracuse’s shot clock history rooted in Le Moyne’s library (Daily Orange)
Szmyt nominated for Bulsworth Trophy (Cuse.com)
SI’s preseason college basketball rankings, 1-353 (Sports Illustrated)