Syracuse Basketball: Orange Poised for a Big Week

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Syracuse Basketball: Orange Poised for a Big Week
Nate Shron/Getty Images
Michael Carter-Williams leads the high-octane Syracuse Orange offense.

With two games this week at home in the Carrier Dome, the No. 8 Syracuse Orange are slated to bounce back from a week that saw them fall two spots in the AP poll. 

Syracuse is set to take on Providence on Wednesday and then No. 11 Georgetown in a showdown between two of the top-ranked teams in the Big East. 

Last week, the then-No. 6 Orange were upset by the unranked UConn Huskies on the road 66-58 before rebounding against Seton Hall 76-65.

Expect Syracuse to continue to bounce back this week in Big East play. 

Here's a look at this week's opponents:

 

Providence

The Orange should have no problem Wednesday against Providence. Though the Friars gave then-No. 21 fits Saturday when they went for the upset against the Irish, Syracuse will be ready for scrappy Providence. 

The Friars are just 6-7 in league play and 14-11 overall, and struggle on offense. They rank 153rd in the nation at 68.1 points per game and an abysmal 227th with a .421 field-goal percentage. 

Meanwhile, Syracuse dominates the boards, averaging 40.2 per game which is good for 11th in the nation. Jim Boeheim’s team should easily be able to handle the Friars and cruise to a victory at the Carrier Dome on Wednesday. 

 

Georgetown

The Hoyas will present more of a challenge for the Orange. Georgetown and Syracuse have matching 9-3 league records, tied for best in the Big East, so a lot could be on the line during Saturday’s contest. 

But senior guard Brandon Triche, sophomore guard Michael Carter-Williams and junior forward C.J. Fair form a three-headed monster that Georgetown will have trouble responding to. 

Nate Shron/Getty Images
Orange forward C.J. Fair leads the team in rebounds.

Triche leads the team in scoring with 14.9 points per game and adds 3.7 assists per game to the equation. Carter-Williams is the motor to the Syracuse offense, averaging a team-leading 8.0 assists per game and throws in 12.6 points per game for good measure. 

Meanwhile, Fair adds 14.0 points per game and a team-leading 7.2 boards per game.

Combined, the three players should give the Hoyas defense fits Saturday night. Georgetown is not a high-scoring team and doesn’t rebound well, so the high-octane Syracuse offense should keep things moving at an uncomfortable pace for the Hoyas in the Carrier Dome.

The Orange have a lot to prove against Georgetown and should come out flying. With two such favorable matchups slated for this week, expect Syracuse to surge.

 

All stats via ESPN

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