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Syracuse Basketball: Four things to look for against Cornell

The Orange look to bounce back after a devastating loss to St. John’s.

NCAA Basketball: Colgate at Syracuse
How will the Orange respond?
Mark Konezny-USA TODAY Sports

This season wasn’t supposed to showcase games that matter this much against 3-8 teams. The Syracuse Orange square off against the Cornell Big Red in a must-win game. The Orange are too talented to have gotten to a point where a game like this could be in question.

However, the Orange can’t go into this game lacking confidence and expect to win. Tyler Lydon and crew need to go in knowing they are the better team, and perform like it too.

Can the Orange rely on Taurean Thompson as a go-to scorer?

Taurean Thompson erupted onto the scene for Syracuse as his more than advanced offensive arsenal has given coach Jim Boeheim more than enough reasons to play the Freshman big-man early and often.

Thompson’s ability to dominate the offensive side of the ball from inside and beyond the arc has given him an advantage against most defenses. The offense is without question better with Thompson on the floor, but are the Orange giving to much responsibility to a freshman? We’ll find out tonight.

Can Tyler Lydon keep this going?

It looks like Tyler Lydon’s slump is behind him and he is back to his normal ways—unfortunately, Lydon hasn’t been able to do it on his own. It seems as if whenever Lydon has a good game, sharp shooter Andrew White III struggles. If Lydon can keep his hot shooting going hopefully the Orange can get something out of White to accumulate more wins.

NCAA Basketball: Colgate at Syracuse
Can Frank Howard be the leader the Orange need him to be?
Mark Konezny-USA TODAY Sports

How will the Orange contain Matt Morgan?

Matt Morgan is the Big Red’s leading scorer, averaging just under 20 points a game this season. He has been Cornell’s most consistent option as he uses his outside shot to dominate defenses. The Orange have had trouble containing the best player on weaker opponents, but look for SU to change that trend tonight.

How will Syracuse respond from one of their worst losses as a program?

The Orange are coming off of one of their worst losses in the history of their program, getting blown-out at home against St. John’s. The loss brought the Orange to an all-time low, standing at 7-5, a record that is near the bottom in regards to the ACC teams.

The time is now for Syracuse to change the course of their season and wake up. The talent is there, it’s just a matter of how badly they want to be great. Despite the inferior opponent, the Orange know that tonight is a must win.