Last Saturday’s showing against the Virginia Tech Hokies wasn’t the best for the Syracuse Orange (14-6, 5-2), but Wednesday’s matchup on the road against the Boston College Eagles (11-7, 2-4) is a great opportunity for the Orange to show that they’ve learned from their mistakes. Let’s see if the “experts” think Syracuse will have a bounce back win, or another upsetting road loss.
Syracuse 68, Boston College 62
Even after a win against Duke on the road, it’s hard for me to feel comfortable about this Syracuse team against any ACC team on the road. Ky Bowman has had his fair share of success against the Orange in the past, but I see the 2-3 zone finding a way to let him be the Eagles’ only viable scorer Wednesday night. Bowman will get his, but Tyus Battle will bounce back from his 3-for-10 shooting performance against the Hokies by leading Syracuse to a much-needed road win.
Boston College 68, Syracuse 64
Virginia Tech’s ball pressure forced the Syracuse offense to look inept after it had been gaining momentum in games prior. BC’s guards, who are capable of the same type of ball pressure, will use the VT game plan as a blueprint to disrupt Syracuse’s rhythm on the offensive end. The Eagles’ four major scoring contributors have faced Syracuse’s zone before and the experience will play a factor as Ky Bowman and Nik Popovic do enough to lift Boston College over the Orange.
Syracuse 69, Boston College 66
Conventional wisdom would indicate that Syracuse shouldn’t worry about Ky Bowman and should instead focus on shutting down the other Eagles. However, Justin Robinson just demonstrated what can happen when you allow a talented player to take over a game and impose their will. I think the Orange should attack Bowman when they have the ball by making him run through screens chasing Elijah Hughes and using Hughes as a screener to get Bowman to switch to Tyus Battle. The crowd at Conte Forum will contain more Syracuse fans than Eagles supporters, and an early lead will get them loud and keep BC from believing they can take this game. This is a huge swing game for the Orange, so they need to bring the energy and effort from the tip.
Syracuse 64, Boston College 63
Look out for a sneaky thriller here, as it’s no surprise anymore that Bowman and the Eagles play above what many would expect from that program. The surprise this year is that their big men progressed, with Steffon Mitchell posting a 6.1 defensive box plus minus and Nic Popovic a player efficiency rating only 1.1 points below Bowman. Syracuse needs to reintegrate Elijah Hughes after his first off game in ages and they’ll likely hold the shooting edge in this one, which should be enough to slide by another tricky ACC foe.
Syracuse 70, Boston College 67
I don’t even want to know what my record is in predicting games this season. So I’m just going with what Ken Pom says.
Syracuse 75, Boston College 68
No offense to everyone else here, but this is a Boston College team that allows more than 72 points per game, lost to Hartford and IUPUI and barely beat lowly Wake Forest in their last outing. I know that hasn’t stopped underwhelming Eagles teams from beating SU before, but I think the Orange are rested, prepared and looking to prove that the blowout against Tech was a fluke. Bowman gets his points, but no one else scores consistently. It’s not a runaway, but the zone does enough to force bad shots while Syracuse uses an array of scorers to do enough to grab the win.
Who will win the Syracuse vs. Boston College game?
This poll is closed
The Orange, and we don’t even remember what happened down in Blacksburg on Saturday!
The Eagles, and... uh oh.