Date & Time: Saturday, November 23 at noon ET
Carrier Dome, Syracuse, N.Y.
Extended Forecast: High of 46 and mostly sunny.
TV/Streaming: ACC Network
The Line: No line at current, though ESPN’s matchup predictor gives Syracuse an 83.3% chance to win.
Radio: Cuse.com, TK 99/105, WAER 88.3
Rivalry: Syracuse, 9-1
Current Streak: 1, Orange
First Meeting: ACC Legend Wilbur Crisp put up 13 points in a 37-20 Syracuse win at home over Bucknell. It was one of 10 wins in 11 games for SU during the 1914-15 campaign.
Last Meeting: Syracuse ran away from Bucknell in an 80-61 game back in 2011. The (then) top-ranked Orange were led by Kris Joseph’s 17 points, while Scoop Jardine chipped in 12 and Rakeem Christmas had 10 on the contest. The Bison never got closer than 13 points in the second half as SU rolled — like they did for much of that season.
Head Coaches: Syracuse - Jim Boeheim (44th year; 1,048-380 at SU) | Bucknell - Nathan Davis (5th Year, 91-48 at Bucknell)
Coach Bio: Davis played at DIII Randolph-Macon College in the 90s, then jumped into coaching as an assistant at (DIII) Emory and Henry in 1997. A year later, he was at Navy, then jumped to Bucknell’s staff in 2003, where he stayed through 2008. He spent a year at Colgate, then took over his alma mater for a stretch until Bucknell hired him back as the head coach in 2015. Davis has taken home four straight Patriot League regular season titles, with two NCAA Tournament bids in 2017 and 2018. No wins in those games, however.
Last Year: The Bison were tied for first in the Patriot League at 13-5, but lost the conference championship game to Colgate, preventing them from grabbing a third straight NCAA bid.
Last Game: Things were pretty rough for Bucknell in a 98-70 loss to Penn State in State College, Pa. Despite a pretty even first half (the Bison trailed by just three), the second half was all Nittany Lions, behind a 27-point performance from Lamar Stevens. On the Bucknell side, four different players did hit double figures, however — a group led by Andrew Funk, who had 15 points on 7-of-12 shooting.
”Fear Me, I’ve Killed Hundreds of Timelords”: Leading scorer John Meeks is averaging 13.6 points per game and is also hitting 44.4% (8-of-18) from outside. Him getting hot from beyond the arc wouldn’t necessarily be a surprise, but it’s certainly a possibility.
If we’re looking for the customary “out of nowhere” candidate, Kahliel Spear is averaging 5.6 points per game, but is 4-of-7 from three-point range so far.
If Syracuse Wins: That’s win No. 4 in a row following a tough opening loss. Beating Bucknell is far from an amazing feat, but it’s still a win that helps this young team continue to gain confidence and work out some things on both ends of the floor.
If Syracuse Loses: Waylp. A loss to the Bison would be pretty tough to take, and would set a bad tone as SU looks ahead to tougher foes like Oklahoma State and either Ole Miss or Penn State in Brooklyn.
Fun Fact 1: Bucknell AD Jermaine Truax knows Orange football coach Dino Babers, as evidenced by the endorsing quote included in the announcement around Truax’s new role. Truax and Babers were at Bowling Green around the same time period.
Fun Fact 2: Continuing the AD connection, previous Bucknell AD John Hardt is a former Orange athletics employee, having worked as the director of compliance from 1992-96