#57 Syracuse Men's Basketball 2020-2021 Preview

Syracuse Orange
2020-2021 Overall Rank: #57
Conference Rank: #9 ACC
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Syracuse has been a pretty consistently average team ever since they finished 28-6 in 2014. Over the past six seasons, the Orange have won anywhere between 18 and 23 games and have seemingly lived on the NCAA Tournament bubble. Syracuse was unlikely to make the tournament last season if there was one, but they will return four starters from that squad. The Orange seem likely to find themselves in familiar territory this season, in the middle of the ACC and on the bubble.
2019-20 Record: 18-14, 10-10
Coach: Jim Boeheim
Coach Record: 964-399 at Syracuse, 964-399 overall
Key Departed Players:
Elijah Hughes, Forward, 19.0 ppg
Brycen Goodine, Guard, 1.9 ppg
Key Returning Players:
Buddy Boeheim, Junior, Guard, 15.3 ppg
Joseph Girard III, Sophomore, Guard, 12.4 ppg
Marek Dolezaj, Senior, Forward, 10.4 ppg
Bourama Sidibe, Senior, Center, 6.0 ppg
Quincy Guerrier, Sophomore, Forward, 6.9 ppg
Jesse Edwards, Sophomore, Center, 2.4 ppg
Robert Braswell, Sophomore, Forward, 1.7 ppg
Key New Players:
John Bol Ajak, RS Freshman, Center
Frank Anselem, Freshman, Center
Alan Griffin, Junior, Forward, Transfer from Illinois
Woody Newton, Freshman, Forward
Chaz Owens, Freshman, Forward
Kadary Richmond, Freshman, Forward
Syracuse loses top scorer Elijah Hughes, but they return essentially everyone else from last season’s rotation. Buddy Boeheim, Joseph Girard and Marek Dolezaj are all back after averaging double-digit points last year. Boeheim proved to be more than just the coach’s son behind 15.3 points while shooting 37% from three on 8.2 attempts per game. Girard had a strong freshman campaign averaging 12.4 points, 3.5 assists, 3.0 rebounds and 1.5 steals. Dolezaj, a senior this season, has been a solid all-around player throughout his career and averaged 10.4 points, 6.4 rebounds, 2.7 assists and 1.1 steals last year. Bourama Sidibe is the final returning starter as the anchor of the 2-3 zone down low. Sidibe doesn’t score much with just 6.0 points per game, but added 7.6 rebounds, 1.4 blocks and 1.3 steals per contest. Quincy Guerrier is the top reserve back this season after averaging 6.9 points and 5.3 rebounds per game. Alan Griffin is the lone non-freshman newcomer for the Orange. Griffin is a graduate transfer from Illinois who averaged 8.9 points and 4.5 rebounds last season. Syracuse also adds five freshmen to the roster, led by four-star, top-100 recruit Kadary Richmond. Depth has been a recurring issue for Syracuse over the last few years and could continue this season unless some of the freshmen make the regular rotation. In any event, Syracuse looks to be in a similar position to the last several years as a mid-level ACC team that should hang around the bubble all season.
Projected Postseason Tournament: NIT
By the Numbers:
Scoring Offense: 74.3 (93rd in nation, 4th in conference)
Scoring Defense: 69.3 (173, 10)
Field-Goal Percentage: 43.5 (184, 6)
Field-Goal Defense: 40.6 (55, 4)
Three-Point Field Goals Per Game: 8.1 (86, 5)
Three-Point Field-Goal Percentage: 32.9 (202, 7)
Free-Throw Percentage: 74.0 (81, 4)
Rebound Margin: -1.3 (239, 10)
Assists Per Game: 14.0 (99, 5)
Turnovers Per Game: 11.3 (38, 3)
Madness 2020 Men’s Basketball Recruit Rankings:
#83 Kadary Richmond