Teams: Syracuse Orange (0-0) vs. Lehigh Mountain Hawks (0-0)
Day & Time: Monday, November 7, 8:00 pm
Location: JMA Wireless Dome, Syracuse, N.Y.
Line: Syracuse is a big favorite as the DraftKings Line gives the Orange -19 over Lehigh to start the season.
TV/Streaming: ACC Network Extra (WatchESPN)
Rivalry: 4-0, Syracuse
Current Streak: 4, Syracuse
First Meeting: Syracuse and Lehigh played for the first time back in 1923. The Orange won a low scoring game 28-16. Hank Greve led the way with 10 points.
Last Meeting: By modern times, Syracuse and Lehigh played a low scoring game in 2015. The Orange shot 34.6% but Lehigh shot 28.8% as Syracuse won 57-47. Michael Gbnije led the way with 16 points. The two teams were scheduled to play in 2021 but COVID issues in Syracuse’s program forced the game to be canceled.
Head Coaches: Syracuse - Jim Boeheim (47th year, 1,099-426) | Lehigh - Dr. Brett Reed (16th year, 246–208)
Coach Bio: Reed played his collegiate basketball at Eckerd College. After graduation, Reed bounced around as an assistant between Oakland CC, UNC Greensboro, and High Point. He joined Lehigh in 2002 as an assistant coach. Reed earned his doctorate in instructional technology with a cognate in sports administration from Wayne State in 2003. He was promoted to associate head coach in 2006 at Lehigh before taking over as the program’s head coach in 2007.
Reed’s most successful year was in 2011-12, when Lehigh won the Patriot League tournament and eventually amassed a program-record 27 wins. The Mountain Hawks notably beat Duke in the first round of the NCAA tournament. During this time, Reed coached and developed notable NBA star C.J. McCollum, who has averaged over 20 points in each of his last seven seasons in the NBA with the Portland Trail Blazers and the New Orleans Pelicans. Lehigh has finished with double-digit conference wins in nine of Reed’s seasons at the helm of the program.
Last Year: As usual, non-conference games did Lehigh no favors, but the Mountain Hawks started out the Patriot League season strong, winning four of their first five games. That included an upset win over Colgate, the Patriot League favorites. Lehigh didn’t stay consistent but still got to double-digit conference wins for the first time since the 2018-19 season. That was good enough for the 4th seed in the Patriot League tournament, where the Mountain Hawks lost in the semifinals.
Last Game: Lehigh struggled to get anything going offensively against Colgate in the Patriot League semifinals, as the Mountain Hawks shot just 34.9% from the floor. The Raiders stormed out to a double-digit lead at halftime and never looked back, ending Lehigh’s season with a 81-61 defeat.
“Fear Me, I’ve Killed Hundreds of Timelords”: Evan Taylor returns to Lehigh as the team’s leading scorer from last season. He averaged 13.0 points per game, buoyed by a 41.2 three-point percentage. Those numbers were good enough for third-team All-Patriot League honors.
If Syracuse Wins: The fountain of youth is a strong one to drink from.
If Syracuse Loses: It seems like a great time to try a drink from Onondaga Lake’s waters.
Fun Fact: With Mike Krzyzewski retiring at the end of last season, Jim Boeheim now takes over as the active wins leader among DI coaches (even with “vacated” wins). The next closest active coach is Bob Huggins with 916 wins.
Odds/lines subject to change. T&Cs apply. See draftkings.com/sportsbook for details.