Day & Time: Saturday, February 5, 2 pm ET
Location: Carrier Dome, Syracuse, N.Y.
TV/Streaming: ESPN2, WatchESPN
Louisville Blog: Card Chronicle
Rivalry: 10-6, Syracuse
Current Streak: 1, Louisville
Rivalry: 19-10, Louisville
Current Streak: 1, Louisville
First Meeting: Syracuse traveled to Kentucky for its first ever matchup against Louisville on December 16, 1964. The Orange lost 67-62 with Dave Bing and Chuck Richards scoring 23 points each.
Last Meeting: Syracuse stayed initially relatively close with Louisville in its February 19, 2020 matchup. The Orange went into the halftime locker room trailing by seven. Everything changed in the second half as the Cardinals figured out their best offensive strategy against the zone and dominated the final 20 minutes. Louisville outscored Syracuse by 17 in the second half en route to a 90-66 win.
Head Coaches: Syracuse - Jim Boeheim (46th year, 1,043-418) | Louisville - Mike Pegues (interim first year, 5-3)
Coach Bio: Pegues played for Delaware under now current head coach of Notre Dame Mike Brey. Pegues became the first Delaware player to earn conference player of the year honors and led the school to two NCAA Tournament appearances. He was inducted into the University of Delaware Hall of Fame in 2007. Pegues bounced around professional teams before entering coaching at the high school level.
His first collegiate job was with VCU as a video coordinator before joining his alma mater, Delaware, as an assistant for three seasons. Pegues was then hired by Chris Mack to join his staff at Xavier in 2012. He stayed with Mack and the school until 2018, when Mack took the head coaching job at Louisville. Pegues joined Mack at the new program and continued to serve on his staff.
Pegues got his first taste as a head coach at the beginning of the 2021-22 season when Mack was suspended for the first six games of the season. Pegues was elevated to interim head coach of the Cardinals after Mack and the school decided to part ways on January 26.
Last Year: Louisville showed promise at the beginning of the season, starting the year 9-1 and ranked as high as No. 16. However, losses to unranked teams Miami, Florida State and Clemson started to derail the Cardinals. Then Louisville didn’t play for 19 days due to COVID issues and February. Despite the setbacks, the Cardinals finished seventh in the ACC with a 13-6 overall record and an 8-5 record in conference.
However, Louisville lost in the first round of the ACC tournament to Duke, which left the Cardinals on the bubble heading to Selection Sunday. Louisville was announced as the first team out of the field of 68, but was named as the first alternate team if a program couldn’t play a first-round game due to COVID issues. However, all tournament teams made the deadline to schedule their games, meaning Louisville’s season ended.
Last Game: Louisville battled back and forth with UNC on Tuesday night and went to overtime. The game carried a couple officiating controversies that benefitted the Tar Heels as UNC survived 90-83 over the Cardinals. No Tar Heel bench player scored a point in the game.
“Fear Me, I’ve Killed Hundreds of Timelords”: We’d put Malik Williams here, but he was suspended by Coach Pegues for the UNC game and his status for the Syracuse game is still unknown as of now. Instead we’ll point out Noah Locke, who holds the unique distinction of having a higher three-point percentage (36%) than normal field-goal percentage (34.4%).
If Syracuse Wins: What is this feeling? A Syracuse team over .500?
If Syracuse Loses: So does Syracuse have to hire Chris Mack now?
Fun Fact: Syracuse and Louisville were scheduled to play each other twice last season, but both games were suspended and eventually canceled due to COVID issues.