There are numerous reasons for the Syracuse Orange men’s basketball team’s loss to Virginia Tech on Saturday.
The Hokies obviously shot the lights out from three, and Andrew pointed out how high ball pressure hurt SU’s abilities on offense too. To varying extents, one of the reasons for the struggles on both ends of the floor could also be the fact that SU had just one day between their home matchup against Miami and a road game at Blacksburg.
Characteristically, Jim Boeheim something to say about it after Saturday’s 22-point loss, as Syracuse.com captured:
“It’s always tough. We played Thursday. They played Monday. When you have that much time to prepare for us, it helps. And we had one day. That’s not supposed to happen. I know why it happens. It’s unfortunate it happens. It’s because of TV. We easily could have played Wednesday night and had two days of practice. It wouldn’t have made any difference the way Virginia Tech played. It certainly is the right thing to do. We don’t seem to be doing that.”
Boeheim doesn’t make excuses here, versus just pointing out a large flaw that plagues ACC teams all the time. If everyone’s bunched together and playing on short rest (see: NCAA Tournament), it’s fine. But if some teams are getting four or five days rest, while others have one or two, that doesn’t create an equitable playing field. Syracuse didn’t really look ready on Saturday night, and in hindsight, it was obvious why that was the case.
More on that, and the rest of your Syracuse-related links below:
Still, the fact that the Hokies had four days between games to sharpen their advantages, while Syracuse had just one, left the Orange fighting a substantially uphill battle from the moment the game was scheduled. Before its game on Saturday night. Virginia Tech’s most recent game was its loss at North Carolina on Monday night. Syracuse, meanwhile, had a quick turnaround after its win on Thursday against Miami.
In the alphabet soup of KPI (37), SOR (47), BPI (35), POM (36) and SAG (33), only SOR – or Strength of Record – is a Syracuse anomaly. Some of those metrics are predictive, which means sites like KenPom try to “guess” how that team’s stats and results project into future games. Some metrics are based on to-date results for that team.
“With Joe coming in and Buddy (Boeheim) being here, we have two of the better shooters out there,” McNamara, who recruited Girard III, said Sunday night. “Possibly the best shooter in each of the last two classes. His shooting ability translates, but he has some ability off the ball to make plays for himself and others. He can create his own shot. All of the pieces are there.”
Is the ACC the best conference in college basketball this season? (News & Observer)
But Duke lost to Gonzaga and UNC lost to Michigan, so the “Power 5” conferences (subbing the Big East for the pedestrian Pac-12 to make the conference math work here) are basically pushing the chips across the table. But in the postseason, it has not been close. The ACC has been the best conference since it expanded to 15 teams in 2014.
Darton, who chose SU over a PWO offer to UMass, said playing in the Atlantic Coast Conference was a significant factor in his decision. So too was the way Ward described how walk-ons are respected in Central New York. “He talked about how we would get the same treatment as a scholarship player and how they don’t really refer to PWO as PWO,” Darton said.