We are about to embark on a new era for the Syracuse Orange men’s basketball program. Adrian Autry hit the ground driving this weekend as he was on the recruiting trail looking to build on his 2024 class.
.@Cuse_MBB new head coach Adrian Autry (left), assistant Gerry McNamara (second from right) and staff are here at Ryan to see @WoodBoysBball junior guard @JalilBethea2, MVP of the Catholic League. @Wood_Vikings @WOODHOOPS @HSGameOn pic.twitter.com/rDtfrR8tM2— Tom Moore (@TomMoorePhilly) March 11, 2023
Orange fans aren’t going to measure Autry on the miles he travels or the recruiting rankings, but what metric will be used to evaluate Syracuse in the AB (After Boeheim) era? Are we basing our evaluation on what we believe Syracuse is, or the current state of the program?
Suppose Autry gets Syracuse into a couple of NCAA Tournaments but the Orange get knocked out before the Sweet Sixteen? Would your opinion change if Syracuse was finising in the top four of the ACC? One side might think he’s not living up to the Syracuse standard no matter the regular season record.
Another group of fans might welcome a return to the Top 25, competing for a regular-season ACC title and gasp, actually making it beyond a 2nd game at the ACC Tournament (non Greensboro years of course). Will sustained regular-season success give the fanbase more patience with March results?
I know some of you think this is ridiculous to wonder about less than a week into Autry’s tenure, but it’s a topic of considerable debate among Syracuse fans.
We know a number of fans worry that Syracuse will not be able to survive Boeheim’s departure.
We know a number of fans of wanted the Orange to hire a head coach with significant experience.
We know a number of fans are going to compare every decision to what they think Boeheim would have done.
Syracuse is finally facing the reality of a new head coach and the evaluation process that fanbase chooses will be interesting to follow.
If we want to be honest with ourselves and our expectations, we need to look at the current state of the program and base assessment under those parameters.