One of the biggest storylines for the 2018-19 Syracuse Orange men’s basketball season so far has been the health (or lack thereof) of starting point guard Frank Howard. After missing the first four games of the season while recovering from surgery, he’s struggled since as he works to regain his footing — and as a result, his jumpshot.
As a junior, Howard was a breakout player in the ACC, and one of the most important pieces of Syracuse’s offense while averaging 14.4 points per game and 4.7 assists. But as a senior, he’s averaging just six points points and 3.7 assists. His eight points (with two three-pointers) in Saturday’s win over Notre Dame, however, seemed to indicate he’s starting to regain his health a bit.
He tells Syracuse.com’s Mike Waters about the gradual improvement:
“I feel I’m getting better each day. It’s kind of a weird thing to say but I’m not really focused on the numbers right now. I’m just trying to get the feel back. Each game feels like my best game back. I feel like I can get up the court a lot better and push the ball a lot better. I’m getting there.’’
Waters has plenty more from Frank, too. The piece is well worth a read. With luck, Howard becomes a greater scoring threat to lighten the load on Tyus Battle, Oshae Brissett and Elijah Hughes. Having four consistent scorers in the lineup could potentially help this offense take the necessary steps to improve from last season’s effort.
That, plus more of your Syracuse-related links below:
“I think Frank score, too,’’ Boeheim said. “I think he’s not there yet, but I’m hopeful. He averaged 15 points a game last year. They’re giving him shots. He’s getting open. They’re not guarding him. He’s going to get shots until he makes some. As long as those other guys are scoring, he’s going to get some looks.’’
Ranking the current ACC basketball coaches (Blogger So Dear)
No. 3 Jim Boeheim, Syracuse Orange: Boeheim is below Roy on my list because he’s only been in the ACC for a few years. He may have more wins, but Roy has done a lot more in the conference. Boeheim has 1 National Championship, 5 Final Four appearances, a Naismith Coach of the Year Award, an AP Coach of the Year Award, and several Big East Championships (which don’t count for too much on this list).
Girard scored 58 points for Glens Falls High School in a 92-88 overtime win over Schuylerville, according to the Glens Falls Post-Star newspaper. Girard knocked down six 3-pointers, 12 free throws and hit 14 traditional two-point baskets.
“I think it’s reasonable to evaluate it,” (ACC commissioner John Swofford) said, “but most of the noise is from outside the room, not within the room. I don’t think we should have our heads stuck in the sand ... you want to re-evaluate it and see if it’s accomplishing what you want it to accomplish, and certainly to this point I think it would appear the answer has been yes.”
Ex-Rogers football standout reflects on first season at Syracuse (NewportRI.com)
“I did have a goal to get on the field, but really, it was a blessing,” Bennett said during a phone interview Friday morning. “I realized there were a lot of fundamentals I needed to work on. I can see now that I wasn’t ready yet. I needed to really learn the playbook. Staying back, I was grateful for that.”
SportsDay’s way-too-early top 25: Syracuse tied for 23rd (Dallas News)