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2020 S.O.B. Award winners: Best player, moment, etc

The votes are in, folks

Syracuse v Louisville Photo by Joe Robbins/Getty Images

Folks, after much deliberation (read: no deliberation really), the votes are finally in. That’s correct. We have reached a consensus on category winners for the S.O.B. (Syracuse Orange Basketball) Awards.

This is a democracy here, so we left the voting process entirely up to you guys. Award categories are listed in bold followed by the winner and the percentage of receiving votes.

Without further ado, here’s how you all voted for each category.

Best player: Elijah Hughes (89% of all receiving votes)

This was a rather obvious choice. Hughes led not only Syracuse but the entire ACC in scoring. He provided help in just about every department for the Orange this year, unabashed to take on ball-handling duties while making plays off the bounce and being effective on the defensive end. Of course, Hughes evolved from a catch and shoot player in 2018-19 to playmaking off the dribble and hitting from mid-range.

In doing so, Hughes became just the second Syracuse player in the last 15 years to average over 19.0 points per game. He was an All ACC First Team selection.

His time at Syracuse is finished as Hughes has elected to stay with the NBA Draft process. Sheck Wes thinks he’s the biggest steal in this year’s class.

Best walk-on: Shaun Belbey (75%)

Shaun Belbey takes home the best walk-on award, although he hasn’t been a true walk-on since the 2017-18 season. Maybe we should give the award to runner up Brendan Paul?

Most surprising player: Joe Girard III (36%)

This category was slightly more subjective, but Joe Girard takes home the honors after a stellar freshman campaign. Just two games into the season Jim Boeheim moved Girard to the starting point guard position.

He finished his first season averaging 12.4 points, 3.5 assists, 3.0 rebounds and 1.5 steals per game. An underrated aspect of his game, Girard took care of the ball and completed the season with a 1.84 assist to turnover ratio.

Girard surpassed all reasonable expectations in his first year, so it’s not surprising to see him take home the most surprising player award.

Most improved player: Buddy Boeheim (41%)

Without a reliable benchmark, freshmen were exempt from this category, but that probably wouldn’t have matter all that much as Buddy Boeheim improved vastly from his freshman season. An added dimension to his game, Buddy put the ball on the deck with greater frequency in his sophomore year and hit the mid-range. He almost tripled his scoring average in his second season by putting up 15.3 points per game on 37.0% shooting from outside.

Syracuse v Virginia Photo by Ryan M. Kelly/Getty Images

Best moment: Buddy Boeheim’s banked in 3 at Virginia

Continuing along with Boeheim, he takes home the best moment of the season with his banked-in heave from near half court against Virginia with the shot clock winding down. The bucket gave Syracuse a 57-49 lead over Virginia in extra time and all but sealed the game. It was one of the lighter moments of the season.

Best game of the season: Syracuse’s ACC Tournament win over North Carolina (67%)

Syracuse’s last game of the season was its best, according to you all. The Orange cruised past North Carolina in Greensboro after getting blown out in the Carrier Dome to UNC just two weeks prior. Syracuse came out firing on all cylinders, earned major contributions from the front-court and sailed to an 81-53 victory. Syracuse ended its nine-game losing streak to UNC in the process.

Syracuse v Louisville Photo by Joe Robbins/Getty Images

Jim Boeheim quote of the year: KenPom (29%)

This was tightest voting category of all as Boeheim’s ‘money grab’ quote came in just behind at 28%. Alas, there was a glaring omission on our end, so hats off to the write-in vote from TNIAAM commenter OrangeTundra. How could we forget this one about Quincy Guerrier?

“I think he’s going to make a three some day. I’m not sure if it’s going to be in my lifetime, but he’s going to make one some day.”

We apologize for that and while we’re here, we probably could’ve included Boeheim’s “miracle for the year” comments after Guerrier’s two made free throws in crunch time at Notre Dame. We’ll do better next time around.


Well, there you have it. The 2020 S.O.B. Awards are finished. Agree or disagree with the winners? Let us know in the comment section below.

Follow Nunes and James on twitter @NunesMagician and @JamesSzuba