Teams: Syracuse Orange (4-4, 0-1) vs. Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets (4-2, 0-1)
Date & Time: Saturday, December 7 at noon ET
Location: McCamish Pavilion, Atlanta, Ga.
Extended Forecast: Mostly cloudy, high of 58 with a slight chance of rain
TV/Streaming: ACC Network
Odds: No line right now, but ESPN’s matchup predictor says Syracuse only has a 35.3% chance to win this one. Not great...
Radio: Cuse.com, TK 99/105, WAER 88.3, SiriusXM - 371 (away) | 972 (home)
Rivalry: 6-5, Georgia Tech
Current Streak: 2, Jackets
First Meeting: SU and Georgia Tech first met not TOO long ago, back in the 1985 NCAA Tournament. After each team’s respective first round wins, the 7th-seeded Orangemen went up against second-seeded Georgia Tech in Atlanta, falling 70-53. Rafael Addison led the way for Syracuse with 17 points in the contest.
Last Meeting: The Orange suffered a tough and surprising 73-59 loss at the Dome, after Jose Alvarado and Georgia Tech lit them up from the floor. Alvarado had 21 points, and the Yellow Jackets shot nearly 60% from the field (and 50% from three) to down Syracuse. Oshae Brissett led the Orange with 15 points.
Head Coaches: Syracuse - Jim Boeheim (44th year; 1,049-383 at SU) | Georgia Tech - Josh Pastner (4th Year, 52-55 at Georgia Tech)
Coach Bio: Pastner played for Arizona in the late 90s, then was quick to jump into coaching. After six years on the Wildcats’ coaching staff, he was off to Memphis, parlaying that into the head coaching job after just one season. Pastner’s Tigers collected quite a bit of hardware in C-USA before moving onto the AAC, where they played .500ish ball through the end of his tenure there. Since he’s been at Georgia Tech, the Yellow Jackets have made the NIT, followed by two straight losing seasons. There have also been some NCAA violations during his time with Tech.
Last Year: After a 4-1 start, Georgia Tech ran into a tougher stretch, taking an 8-5 record into league play. From there, it was a bit of a buzzsaw. The Yellow Jackets started at 3-10 in ACC play, but bounced back a little to finish up the season 6-12 in the conference (and 14-17 overall before losing to Notre Dame in the first round of the league tournament).
Last Game: Tech rode a big second half to a 73-56 win over Nebraska. Michael DeVoe scored 26. They held the Huskers to 32% shooting. It was a whole thing.
”Fear Me, I’ve Killed Hundreds of Timelords”: Sophomore guard Michael DeVoe has been setting the world on fire all season. He’s averaging 23.8 points per game while shotting 55.4% from the field, along with 4.7 rebounds and 3.2 assists per game. DeVoe’s also hitting threes at a blistering rate (58.6%). Not a great recipe for Syracuse’s success given what we’ve seen so far this year.
If Syracuse Wins: All it does is make us feel better for a couple days before the Georgetown game. There’s a chance it’s the start of a turnaround but we’re not going to know that for a bit.
If Syracuse Loses: If you thought this fan base was mad before, just wait. Syracuse basketball fans are about to (arguably) be as pissed off as they’ve been in over four decades.
Fun Fact 1: Georgia Tech hasn’t made the NCAA Tournament since 2010, which would be the longest drought in the ACC if not for Boston College (2009).
Fun Fact 2: Wouldn’t exactly refer to this as “fun” — but Syracuse has never started 4-5. At least as far as I could tell. Let’s not start a new trend.