As the Syracuse Orange wait and watch results (games and COVID tests) from around the country they are sitting in the discussion for a NCAA Tournament bid in large part to the play of Buddy Boeheim down the stretch. In January after dealing with COVID, Buddy managed to shoot 50% from the field twice in eight games. Syracuse was 4-4 in the month and looked to be headed to a very disappointing season.
When the calendar flipped to February Boeheim might not have seen his shadow but what he did see was his missing shooting stroke. Since the start of February he’s been en fuego from the field hitting on over 50% of his shots in six of the last 10 games as Syracuse closed out the year 6-4 during this time.
Over these 10 games, Buddy scored 200 points while averaging 36.5 minutes per game. His shooting numbers climbed as he hit 48% from the field and 46% from 3 during this stretch. More amazing is that these numbers include a 3-13 night at Clemson and a 4-11 game at Georgia Tech. With Syracuse’s season hanging in the balance he provided the offensive spark the Orange needed and he almost carried the team to an upset over the Virginia Cavaliers.
Going into today, these are the players who have scored 30 or more against Virginia in the past decade. Buddy Boeheim had a career-high 31 today. H/T @collegebb_ref pic.twitter.com/eRk5wFU9ba— Matt Park (@MattPark1) March 11, 2021
Should the Orange hold onto one of these final at-large bids let’s hope the rest won’t cool off Jackson Greensboro Bucket-Getter Boeheim (who now has a career average of 22 points per game in the ACC Tournament). Any chances Syracuse has of making another magical run is going to depend on avoiding potential COVID fallout from Virginia and giving Buddy the opportunity to use his patented left-arm chicken wing drive to knock down shots.