The Georgetown Hoyas are visiting the Syracuse Orange and not much is coming out of D.C. ahead of the classic rivalry game. Yes, many fans were anticipating a column from The Washington Post, but the discrepancy of coverage is likely another sign of apathy from a dwindling fanbase. It begs the question, does Georgetown remember that they’re playing Syracuse on ABC this Saturday at 1PM?
On Wednesday, I showed my DC ID and got four tickets to a Georgetown men’s basketball game. That says something. On the Hoyas, and their absolute lack of buzz. https://t.co/rCn6nOj1je— Barry Svrluga (@barrysvrluga) December 9, 2022
The program is indeed out of touch today. Barry Svrluga’s column is far from perfect, but the message is right on: “It’s tough right now to be a Georgetown player, administrator, fan or student.” No one can argue that.
Yes, the giveaway was ill-timed. Yes, these nonconference games have had notoriously small crowds for decades. Yes, Svrluga could have compared attendance numbers of other small nonconference games over the past 40 years that likely come in around 3,000-4,000.
But maybe the outside attention becomes a catalyst for change. Many fans are wishing Svrluga went deeper but the resources—and marketability to justify those resources—are apparently not there.
It’s miserable to see Georgetown’s good-intentioned ticket efforts being mocked. Georgetown had a preconceived promotion series of giveaways for educators, first responders, GU faculty and Staff, healthcare workers, youth basketball players, military, etc. A free-ticket publicity campaign for D.C. families to see a game during the holidays is being misconstrued in schadenfreude for an historic program on the decline. That sells newspapers. Fine. It’s a bit of bad luck.
But the on-court product is far from just bad luck. Going 0-19 wasn’t just bad luck. Blowing halftime leads to lose to Northwestern, Loyola Marymount, American, and South Carolina is not just bad luck. And—apologies to Jagan Mosely—losing Chris Sodom, Antwan Walker, James Akinjo, Josh LeBlanc, Myron Gardner, Galen Alexander, Jalen Harris, Tre King, and Dante Harris during or before each season, is not just bad luck. It’s insane.
The Syracuse media outlets are highlighting that Georgetown has not won a Power 6 game since the win over the Orange on December 11, 2021. The Hoyas have indeed lost 24 straight games of high-major basketball coming into the JMA Wireless Dome. A full year of insanity.
But a column about ineffectively giving away seats seems important, too.
Here are the links:
Syracuse (5-4, 1-0) is coming off a dominant 29-point home victory against Oakland, while Georgetown (5-5) looks to avoid falling back below .500. No, neither of these programs are as dominant as they were decades ago. - but hip-hip hooray for nostalgia...
The only thing Georgetown has been successful at this season is producing tons of turnovers and thriving in chaos, with the Hoyas forcing the second-most turnovers and blocking the second-most shots per game in its conference. If Syracuse can control the ball, it’ll be hard for the Hoyas to muster enough efficient offense in this contest...
The Hoyas aren’t going to force the ball inside but their interior duo of Qudus Wahab and Akok Akok combine for sixteen rebounds per game. Jesse Edwards is the only Syracuse player averaging more than 3.5 rebounds per game so it’s going to take a collective effort by the Orange to keep them off the glass. Turnovers and second-chance points are how the Hoyas can win this game and Syracuse needs everyone to be willing rebounders on the defensive end tomorrow afternoon
Syracuse basketball vs. Georgetown tickets: Cheapest seats for Saturday at the Dome https://t.co/xOeo9SL9om— syracuse.com (@syracusedotcom) December 8, 2022
The loss to the Hoyas last season was one of the worst SU had last season, and given that this year’s GU team already lost to Loyola Marymount by 18 and American by four should make this an easy win for the Orange. But if the recent matchups between the old Big East foes is any indication, this one may not be super easy for SU.
A winning formula for the Orange will start with strong performances from Girard and Edwards, which they’ve gotten in the last two games — both wins. If Syracuse can continue to get the ball inside instead of settling for 3s, they’ll likely find an easier time scoring, especially against Georgetown’s interior, which ranks second nationally with a 3.8% block percentage. SU will also need to patrol the 3-point line well, as Heath and Wayne Bristol Jr. both shoot 45% from beyond the arc. Doing those things early should make this an easy double-digit win for the Orange.
Georgetown will travel to play Syracuse tomorrow.— Patrick Waring (@WaringPatrick) December 9, 2022
Syracuse will formally honor Pearl Washington and Coach Boeheim as members of the Ring of Honor.
Boeheim shared some thoughts on Pearl and Georgetown earlier this week. #Hoyas pic.twitter.com/ZVOBuB3aX0
In Jesse Edwards’ last two games, he’s averaged 20 points and 10.5 rebounds. Pretty good numbers considering that he only played 23 minutes against Oakland. When Edwards stays out of foul trouble, he’s been one of the most effective centers in the ACC. But Goergetown also features Qudus Wahab, now on his second stint with the Hoyas. He left for a season to play at Maryland before returning to the Hoyas for his senior year. So far, he’s averaging 10.3 ppg and 7.4 rpg in 22.6 mpg. At 6’11”, 245 pounds, he will present a bigger (figuratively and literally) challenge for Edwards...
It has been feast or famine for Joe Girard. He’s averaged 19.5 ppg in his last two games after a three game stretch where he scored a combined 9 points. For the season, Girard is shooting 35.3 percent from downtown, down from his 40.3 percent from last year as he draws more attention from opposing defenses. Syracuse needs its starting shooting guard to be more consistent.
As we approach the latest iteration of the Syracuse-Georgetown rivalry, @John_Fanta wants @BrianHigginsSU and the rest of #The315 to know that the Big East still has love for the Orange. pic.twitter.com/lmGqSw2lYG— Cuse Sports Talk (@CuseSportsTalk_) December 8, 2022
Syracuse center Jesse Edwards is off to an impressive start to the season. The 6-foot-11 senior leads the Orange with 15.1 points and 11.4 rebounds per game.
Edwards’ scoring numbers are the most for a Syracuse center since Rakeem Christmas averaged 17.5 points during the 2014-15 season. Christmas is also the last SU center to lead the Orange in scoring.
Edwards’ 11.4 rebounds per game mark the highest since Billy Owens pulled down 11.6 per game in the 1990-91 season.
Edwards will have a huge challenge against Georgetown. Really huge. Georgetown center Qudus Wahab stands 6-foot-11 and weighs 245 pounds. Wahab is posting 10.3 points and 7.4 rebounds per contest this season and is coming off a 10-point, 12-rebound performance in the Hoyas’ win over Siena on Wednesday.
The Orange actually ended up with 27 assists. Joe Girard and Benny Williams led the way with six apiece and while Joe’s passing wasn’t a surprise, it was nice to see plays like this from Benny.
Judah Mintz and Symir Torrence had five assists each as the Orange flew past their previous season-high of 15 assists against Northeastern. We know that ACC defenses will be tougher than Oakland’s 351st ranked unit, but if Syracuse can continue the passing and avoid the over-dribbling they can get better shots for everyone.
The Orange are up to 165th in today’s NET ranking update. They aren’t going to play themselves into NCAA Tournament discussion in the next six games but they likely need to win them all to avoid digging a deeper hole. Keeping this type of ball movement on offense will make Syracuse harder to defend as they prepare for tougher challenges in the ACC.
Today’s announcement represents the latest milestone in a multimillion-dollar, multiyear effort, which began in 2018, to reimagine the stadium experience. Since work commenced, the University has installed a new fixed roof, the largest center-hung video scoreboard in college sports and air conditioning. It has also invested significantly in accessibility updates, lighting and sound enhancements, and the concession experience.
“Our ongoing investments to create a state-of-the-art experience have been a pivotal component of the Campus Framework and demonstrates our commitment to aligning Syracuse University’s mission and vision with its physical spaces,” says Pete Sala, vice president, chief campus facilities officer and managing director of the JMA Dome. “I am thrilled to see this transformative project continue to deliver on this promise, and excited for what these enhancements will mean for current and future generations of Orange students, student-athletes, fans and visitors.”
The Georgetown/Syracuse rivalry will be renewed at 1 pm on ABC on Saturday and as you all know, I'll be at the JMA Wireless Dome for it. Joining me on this episode of The Igloo to help me preview this game is @SDavidsonWKTV!https://t.co/D4UVQ5EuT0— Timmy Ice (@TheRealTimmyIce) December 9, 2022
When the Syracuse offense struggled to make outside shots against Oakland’s 2-3 zone, SU coach Jim Boeheim tweaked his lineup to get his best shooters on the floor.
Boeheim sent starting small forward Chris Bell back into the game, took Mintz out, moved Girard to the point and switched small forward Justin Taylor to shooting guard.
Bell did knock down a 3-pointer, but in a 4-minute span, the lineup managed six points on 3-for-7 shooting with three turnovers.
PLAYER PROFILE: Brandon Murray has come to Georgetown hoping to star. Can he rise above the tumult like a fictional namesake of the 90’s. @PhillyHoyas @CasualHoya @hoyabreakdown @ThompsonsTowel #HOYASAXA #90210 https://t.co/VDTgBix2vR— Patrick Madden (@TheSportsJD) December 9, 2022
These two teams exhibit contrasting shot preferences on this end of the court. The Syracuse offense has a slight preference for inside shots over those from longer-distance, while the Georgetown defense conversely tends to allow marginally more opportunities from the outside. Against the Georgetown defense, this site forecasts that the shot breakdown of the Syracuse offense will be 37.6% three-pointers (0.2% above the D1 average), 25.5% mid-range jumpers (1.8% below the D1 average), and 36.9% near-proximity twos (1.5% above the D1 average)...
Syracuse has been rather mediocre (by NCAA standards) in field goal percentage, rated 144th nationally in that category this year. Meanwhile, the Georgetown defense has performed a bit better than average in defensive field goal percentage (rated our #112 team nationally in that category). On this end of the court, the Syracuse offense has a notable advantage in near-proximity shooting, while the Georgetown defense has the edge in both three-point shooting and mid-range shooting. We expect Syracuse to shoot 30.7% from behind the arc (3.2% below the D1 average), 37.1% from mid-range locations (0.9% below the D1 average), 61.1% from near-proximity (2.7% above the D1 average), and 43.6% overall (0.1% below the D1 average)...
Syracuse should comfortably win the rebounding battle on this end. Syracuse is really nothing special on the offensive glass. On the other hand, they are actually extremely solid at scoring quickly off of second-chance opportunities (nationally rated 45th in that category). Meanwhile, Georgetown has the look of a team that is pretty mediocre on the defensive boards, but they’ve been a bit worse stopping opponents from converting on second-chance putbacks (rated 264th in the country in that category).
So there's football news... (recorded before Anae left)@matt_bonaparte and @OValentine14 talk football's departures as well as give you predictions for tomorrow's Georgetown game.— Locked On Syracuse (@LO_Syracuse) December 9, 2022
LISTEN: https://t.co/R9CtWwZqm1 pic.twitter.com/QkFf0XaFDK
The players of today were born well after Ewing took a swing at Pearl or Michael Graham shoved Andre Hawkins. Heck, Judah Mintz was just 2 years old when Gerry McNamara’s last-second 3-pointer beat the Hoyas.
Still, the SU-Georgetown game still means something to the current Orange players, especially four from the D.C.-Maryland-Virginia area.
“I understand it,’’ Williams said. “Growing up in the D.C. area, I always heard about the rivalry. In my mind, it’s probably the second-greatest rivalry in college basketball behind Duke and Carolina. You don’t have to play for Syracuse or Georgetown to know about the rivalry.’’
Mac McClung (Gate City) of the Delaware Blue Coats will face the Westchester Knicks -- led by his former Georgetown University backcourt mate James Akinjo -- tonight in the #GLeague: https://t.co/KhIDUwjR1W pic.twitter.com/q3ySwyMp8L— BristolSports (@BHCSports) December 9, 2022