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Syracuse Orangemen
RECORD: 24 - 5 REGION: East  SEED: 3
COACH: Jim Boeheim CONFERENCE: ACC
RESULTS| STATS| HISTORY | MESSAGE BOARD | SYRACUSE INSIDER

Road to the Final Four  ...................................................................................

PREVIOUS GAMES
OPPONENT ROUND RESULT
Manhattan 1st Round W 76 - 65
Oklahoma St 2nd Round W 68 - 56
Auburn Sweet 16 W 79 - 78
Oklahoma Elite Eight W 63 - 47
Texas Final Four W 95 - 84
Kansas Championship W 81 - 78


ESPN'S TAKE
 

with Jay Bilas

 

This may be as talented an offensive team as Jim Boeheim has had at Syracuse since the 1980's. With Carmelo Anthony, the Orangemen have a star who can score every time he touches it and draws an enormous amount of defensive attention. Anthony can shoot off the dribble, post and pass out of double teams. Hakim Warrick is a quick jumping athlete who dunks everything around the basket. He is the most explosive leaper in the Big East. Gerry McNamara and Billy Edelin may be young, but both are savvy. McNamara's shooting compliments Edelin's ability to take it off the bounce. Kueth Duany blends in with this talented group to make Syracuse a Final Four contender.

Player to Watch

Carmelo Anthony
From Game 1, folks in up-state NY knew Carmelo wouldn't stay long. But his likely only season in Orange has been special.

Team Statistics
 
Points Per Game 69.1
Rebounds Per Game 40.2
Assists Per Game 15.4
Steals Per Game 9.2
Blocks Per Game 5.8
Turnovers Per Game 14.2
Field Goal % .446
Free Throw % .672
3-Point % .237
3-Pointers Per Game 1.2
Scoring Margin 6.7

How They Got Here
Syracuse has improved maybe as much as any team in the country from November to March, an unsurprising development considering its best player (Carmelo Anthony) and point guard (Gerry McNamara) are freshmen, and considering the midseason addition of Billy Edelin, whose debut after missing a 1½ seasons for off-court issues was worth the wait.

Edelin, a 6-foot-4 point guard who plays interchangeably with the sweet-shooting McNamara, scored 26 points in the Orangemen's 92-88 victory against Notre Dame on March 4. That was the Orangemen's sixth consecutive victory after a desultory 75-61 loss at Connecticut, and for Syracuse the curve continues to shoot upward.

Their NCAA seeding -- which could have been No. 1 if not for a semifinal loss to Connecticut in the Big East tournament -- is higher than their national ranking for most of the season because they have won their last three games against foes from other powerful conferences, including a 92-65 waxing of Georgia Tech and victories at home against Missouri and on the road against Michigan State.

The only non-NCAA Tournament team to beat Syracuse this season was Rutgers, and for seeding purposes, the selection committee surely will excuse a three-point loss at the Louis Brown Athletic Center.

Edelin's addition in mid-January has given coach Jim Boeheim time to get his rotation set, with Edelin joining wing Josh Pace and center Jeremy McNeil to give Syracuse an impressive eight-player rotation.

What We Like
The Orangemen have a lot of offensive firepower, maybe as much as anyone in the tournament. Anthony is a force of nature, a 6-foot-8 wing forward who shoots 3s against bigger defenders, posts up smaller ones, and can dunk on anybody. If Anthony were a one-man gang we'd like him a lot, but we like him even more because he doesn't have to be.

The Orangeman have a nice balance of guards and forwards, with McNamara and Edelin sharing the point, and McNamara able to slide to shooting guard, too. Inside, Anthony can score and gets plenty of help from explosive Hakim Warrick, who has double-double capability, and unselfish senior Kueth Duany. Inside, Craig Forth isn't a great scorer or defender, but is more than adequate at both ends, given the cast around him.

What We Don't Like
Talented the Orangemen may be -- and are -- but experienced they are not. That doesn't matter so much in January and February, but for some reason, March seems to expose every a weakness a young team has.

Look at Duke when Jason Williams, Carlos Boozer and Mike Dunleavy were freshmen in 1999; they lost in the Sweet 16. Most of the time the NCAA Tournament isn't a time for youth to be served. It's a time for youth to be showed the nearest exit.

ROSTER
NO NAME HT WT YR  PPG RPG APG MPG FG% FT% 3PT%
  Carmelo Anthony 6-8  235   22.710.02.136.4.448.716.317
  Hakim Warrick 6-8  218 Sr 15.39.11.533.4.545.656.000
  Gerry McNamara 6-2  182 Sr 13.32.44.635.4.395.911.345
  Kueth Duany 6-6  185 Sr 11.83.62.328.7.434.670.343
  Billy Edelin 6-4  195 Jr 8.43.22.522.9.552.667.000
  Craig Forth 7-0  256 Sr 4.23.40.818.1.495.514.000
  Josh Pace G-F  6-6  203 Sr 3.52.51.913.9.476.545.000
  Jeremy McNeil 6-8  255 Sr 3.34.10.218.0.672.389.000
  Matt Gorman 6-9  235 Sr 2.32.10.18.4.348.625.000
  Andrew Kouwe 6-0  170 Jr 1.70.30.31.7.6001.0001.000
  Ronneil Herron 5-11  158 Sr 1.21.00.01.8.667.667.000
  Gary Hall 6-5  220 Sr 0.40.40.41.21.000.000.000
  Xzavier Gaines 6-4  206 Jr 0.30.30.23.5.125.000.000
  Josh Brooks 6-5  180 Sr 0.00.20.01.2.000.000.000
  Tyrone Albright 5-11  165 Jr 0.00.30.12.9.000.000.000



LAST 5 GAMES LEADERS
OPPONENT RESULT POINTS REBOUNDS ASSISTS
RutgersW, 83-74   
@ Notre DameW, 92-88   
@ GeorgetownW, 93-84   
West VirginiaW, 89-51   
@ Michigan StW, 76-75   


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AUDIO/VIDEO
 
 Dan Patrick Show
Dan Patrick Show: Carmelo Anthony heads into the Final Four as the top freshman in the country.
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