The dust has settled on the 2018-19 college basketball season, and as is tradition, that means every outlet needs to release very early projections of next year’s top 25 and potential bracketology picks.
While the Syracuse Orange are replacing quite a bit for 2019-20, a couple experts still seem to like us for one reason or another.
The Athletic: Ranked 26th
Cool? Guess Seth Davis is pretty high on Oshae Brissett returning. Either way, he’s seeing something in this team everyone else isn’t.
ESPN Bracketology: 11-seed and play-in game vs. Georgetown
Lunardi trolls hard here, and obviously that game wouldn’t happen if the two teams meet up in the regular season. But you can’t hate the way this potential region lays out with an eventual trip to Madison Square Garden on the books if we can get past the round of 32.
He’s the only early bracket to include Syracuse... but also the only real early bracket at all. Other outlets appear much higher on Georgetown, for whatever that’s worth. A lot of folks are also super high on the entire Big East — even after that league sort of imploded in March this season.
While we may not be “better” than Georgetown according to the metrics (though viewing through every other lens, absolutely are better than Georgetown), Syracuse is almost certainly going to be in a better spot than quite a few of the names Lunardi places in front of us. At minimum, Penn State, Dayton and Arizona State are all questionable. Plus there’s the fact that Cincinnati is bound to come back to earth a bit following Mick Cronin’s departure.
But I digress.
As it stands, with or without Brissett, Syracuse has a lot of work ahead of it for 2019-20. The Orange are replacing at least three starters — among them, the team’s point guard, leading scorer and top shot-blocker. Jim Boeheim seems high on the offense for next year, which is nice. But a) we don’t know if that’ll actually come to fruition, and b) that still doesn’t address what could be a pretty iffy defense next season.
What about you, though? Fine with the lower expectations given what usually happens when we’re not on anyone’s radar in preseason? Share your own hot takes below.