Cuse Country

Home Away From Dome for Syracuse Orange Fans

Archive for the ‘Conference Games’ Category

We’re moving to CuseCountry.com

Posted by Tim on August 24, 2007

DC is Cuse Country

This is a photo of a sign blog contributor Josh made before a game against Georgetown in Washington. It became something of a running joke in our crew: Wherever we were, that was Cuse Country. When it came time to name this little project of ours, it seemed a natural fit. Holy crap, the Internet is Cuse Country!

Now, the time has come to move to nicer real estate. And with football season looming like an orange cloud of noxious gas, we’re moving to a new address that doesn’t have “hoops” in the URL.

So come visit us at CuseCountry.com. Same great stuff, new great home.

Posted in ACC, Andy Rautins, Arinze Onuaku, Assists, Baylor, Bernie Fine, Big 10, Big 12, Big East, Big East Tournament, Blogroll, Bracketology, Canisius, Carmelo Anthony, Carrier Dome, Cincinnati, Clemson, Colgate, Conference Games, Craig Forth, Damone Brown, Daryl Gross, Defense, Demetris Nichols, DePaul, DeShaun Williams, Devin Brennan-McBride, Drexel, Elvir Ovcina, Eric Devendorf, Etan Thomas, Former Orangemen, Game Charts, Gas Face, Georgetown, Gerry McNamara, greg paulus, Hakim Warrick, Haters, Hofstra, Holy Cross, In the Media, Jason Hart, Jim Boeheim, Josh Pace, Josh Wright, kodiak bears, Kueth Duany, Lazarus Sims, Losses, Louisville, Marquette, Matt Gorman, Mike Hopkins, Mike Jones, Mookie Watkins, National Championship, NBA, NCAA Tournament, News of the Orange, NIT, Nonconference Games, Northeastern University, Notre Dame, Oklahoma State, Open Letter, Orange Blogosphere, Otis Hill, Pac 10, Paul Harris, Penn, Pitt, Preston Shumpert, Providence, Rankings, Rebounding, Recruits, Regular Season Games, Rob Murphy, RPI, Rutgers, Ryan Blackwell, San Diego State, SEC, South Alabama, South Florida, St. Bonaventure, St. Francis, St. John's, syracuse, Terrence Roberts, UConn, UNC-Charlotte, UTEP, Villanova, Virginia Tech, Walk-ons, West Virginia University, Wichita State, Wins, Zone defense | 2 Comments »

“Like A Virus:” The Orange Road Invasion in Pictures

Posted by Tom on March 5, 2007

img_3622.jpg

Attending our game at Villanova this weekend, it was impossible to ignore a fact that most of our Big East rivals have probably long since come to terms with: Syracuse fans tend to be extremely obnoxious when visiting road arenas. “Like a virus” was the best description overheard from a Villanova fan in our section. However you want to put it, the Orange faithful have some real coconuts. Whether it be against St. John’s, Seton Hall, Georgetown, or Villanova, Cuse fans pour in by the thousands like the Vandals sacking Rome. They wear bright orange, stand out individually in a stadium crowd like fireflies, and don’t hesitate to cheer like they’re back in the dome. They stand and clap until the first bucket is scored, and they fire up “let’s go orange!” and “DE-FENSE” chants at any opportunity. Can you imagine UConn fans bringing that into the dome? No chance. I’ve never seen another team’s fans get away with this the way we do. We always seem to account for anywhere between 10-50% of the overall crowd, so I think it’s a matter of sheer numbers. If you were at that game in DC at the MCI center a few years ago when Gerry sank a last second shot to beat Georgetown, you know that we were about one security guard away from seeing the ultimate humiliation of Syracuse fans storming the court. Unbelievable.

So here is my tribute to the gall of the Syracuse fan, with some other photographically-documented Villanova game observations thrown in.

Read the rest of this entry »

Posted in Big East, Conference Games, Losses, Paul Harris, Rob Murphy, Uncategorized, Villanova | 7 Comments »

5 Reasons To Love This Syracuse Team

Posted by Tom on February 28, 2007

1. Torn-meniscus Terrence Roberts. Somehow this knee injury has vaulted TerrenceRoberts.com from being a 3 1/2 year source of frustration to being my #1 reason to love this team. He’s always been all heart, but now with this injury it really shines. There’s no way he should be playing on this, but he knows it’s his last chance. The guy is like a wounded bear out there. Hobbling around, hungry, dangerous. If you crammed a Kodiak bear into a #33 Syracuse jersey and pushed him off in the direction of the court, you’d get a player who’d take up a lot of space in the middle, set some monster screens up top, have a rebound bounce into them occasionally, and maul anyone who made sudden movements in their direction. Sound familiar?

2. Boeheim realizing that he only has 5 1/2 decent players and just going with it. Seriously, Jimmy is like a guy on a cross country trip who gets a flat tire in Las Vegas and just says fuck it and floors it the rest of the way to L.A with the gas warning light on. He’s driving a car with three wheels with Matt Gorman and Josh Wright tied up in the trunk, and is going to run the remaining guys into the ground and live or die by the results. How can you not love watching Syracuse right now knowing that Devendorf, Rautins, and Nichols are going to play 40 minutes of EVERY GAME between now and the end of the season? Waiting for one of these guys to collapse is going to be the top dramatic sub-plot of the next few weeks.

3. D Nichols is going to win Big East player of the Year totally out of nowhere. Syracusan nailed it when he pointed out that this might be the most surprising thing that’s ever happened in Syracuse basketball. Who saw this coming at the beginning of the season? Who even saw this coming two weeks ago? He’s been putting up these numbers consistently all year, but he’s a pretty quiet player who just hits a ton of nasty jump shots. Everyone’s always thought he’d have a Shumpert-like European career, but I’m calling a solid 10 year career playing for 8 different NBA teams as the 9th man. Mark it down.

4. Andy Rautins playing out of his mind. Have we ever had two pure shooters this good? I say no. With the bonus of his 2-3 quality defensive turnovers forced each game, this kid is a Josh Pace – Kueth Duany type hustling glue guy who’s as essential to this team as anyone. Except that he still looks like a sophomore at J-D who could easily be mopping up sweat in the paint during timeouts. You’ve gotta love him!

5. Syracuse teams with their back to the wall are always awesome. This happens all the time. Syracuse comes into the season with high expectations, drops some bad games early, has a 3-4 game losing streak in late Jan – early Feb, drops out of the top 25, faces being only like the 4th Boeheim team in 31 years not to make the tournament, and can suddenly beat anyone in the country towards the end of the season. It’s the roller coaster of Syracuse fandom that ultimately makes rooting for them so satisfying.

Posted in Andy Rautins, Big East, Conference Games, Demetris Nichols, Eric Devendorf, Georgetown, Jim Boeheim, Josh Pace, Josh Wright, Kueth Duany, Matt Gorman, Preston Shumpert, syracuse, Terrence Roberts, Wins | 5 Comments »

Did You Know?

Posted by Josh on February 27, 2007

Going into tonight’s game:

  • Georgetown was 5th in the nation in scoring defense, giving up under under 57ppg.
  • Georgetown was 10th in the nation in FG% defense, with their opponents shooting 38.7% overall.
  • Georgetown was #2 in the country in FG% on offense, connecting on over 52% of their shots.
  • Georgetown had won their last 11 games by an average margin of 13. ppg.
  • Georgetown was entering the conversation as having a shot at a #1 seed in the NCAA Tournament.

Not in our house, bitches.

SU scored 72 on 44% shooting, while holding the Hoyim to 29.8%. Those are Esherick-esque shooting numbers there, guys. Did you bring back Kevin Braswell or something? Georgetown also turned it over 19 times, 5 above their average. Hell of a performance by the Zone Defense.

Check this sweet photo from the Daily Orange. I’m not a huge court-rushing advocate, but still, it had to be cool to be in this mix:

Posted in Big East, Conference Games, Georgetown, NCAA Tournament, Wins, Zone defense | 1 Comment »

POY

Posted by syracusan on February 26, 2007

I don’t have a lot of time to ruminate on SU’s season-saving, awe-inspiring, enthusiasm-building victory over Georgetown tonight on national television. Grad school duties call, unfortunately. I’d like to debate the finer points of whether Mookie’s resurgence or Rautins’ development deserves more credit for the turnaround; discuss Terrence’s sudden role as inspirational leader; rip into the RPI and lay out all sorts theories on where we are and what more we need to do (or not do); talk about the chances of winning back to back games in the BE tourney with a 5 1/2 man rotation; and otherwise explore life in the new world of a team the gurus now think has locked up an NCAA birth.

ESPN front page cover story right this second:

Syracuse notched its biggest victory of the season on Big Monday. Just how big was its 72-58 victory over No. 10 Georgetown? Let’s just say the Orange can start making plans to dance in March.

But I don’t have time. Instead I’ll just say this: if Demetris Nichols doesn’t win the conference Player of the Year award this season, it’ll be a tragedy of justice. Regardless of what happens at Villanova next weekend, he’s already shown he deserves it from any objective measure. And the scary thing is, it’s not just based on stats. I think he might genuinely be the best player in the conference. That shows you it’s a down year for the league, but right now I could give a crap! The man’s going to win this prize, and it’s going to go down as one of the most improbable turns in the history of SU basketball. I would argue that winning the championship in ’03 was actually less of a surprise than what Nichols has accomplished this year. It’s stunning, and he deserves all the accolades that come to him. The man is an assassin, and he’s played tremendous second halves in the last two games – the two most important games of the season. It took him most of the season to figure out he deserves to be a ball hog, but now that it’s clicked, he’s become borderline unstoppable. It’s too bad he only showed this kind of spunk for one half of one season out of four total years, but it’s still a privilege to watch it unfold.

Come on Big East, give him the hardware!

Posted in Andy Rautins, Big East, Conference Games, Demetris Nichols, Georgetown, In the Media, Mookie Watkins, National Championship, NCAA Tournament, Terrence Roberts, Villanova, Wins | 2 Comments »

maybe they should have reconsidered after the 30th miss

Posted by syracusan on February 22, 2007

I just caught the last minute of Jim Boeheim on Mike & the Mad Dog on YES. I didn’t hear much of substance, other than Jimmy briefly bitching that the media and fans could care less whether you have a great season if you then crap out in the NCAAs. He also mentioned that Providence is undefeated at home in the conference this year, which I hadn’t heard. Considering they have nine losses overall, that means they really are a different team when they get to play in Rhode Island. Sucks for us.

In the mean time, I checked out Providence’s most recent big win at home, over #18 West Virginia a couple days ago. A solid 64-61 win for the Friars, and an interesting box score to boot. The Mountaineers missed thirty-two threes in that game. They hoisted 41 overall. Christ, thank god I’m not a West Virginia blogger. I can only imagine the conniptions I’d be having if the SU offense put on a display like that. After the 25th or so miss, you think maybe they’d discuss trying a different tactic? They took 65 shots overall, and 41 of them were from beyond the stripe. From inside the line they actually shot 15 for 24, a great showing. All the more reason to burst a blood vessel watching them settle for three after three after three. I’m not even a fan, and it drives me nuts just thinking about it. I can imagine what kind of posts we’d get in this space if SU tried that game plan.

On the other hand, Andy Rautins is probably thinking right now about transferring to West Virginia.

Posted in Andy Rautins, Conference Games, In the Media, Jim Boeheim, Providence, West Virginia University | 2 Comments »

Sunday links…

Posted by Tim on February 18, 2007

Some Sunday afternoon linkage:

Posted in Big East Tournament, Conference Games, News of the Orange, Orange Blogosphere, UConn, Wins | 1 Comment »

“Holy crap. We’re executing.”

Posted by Josh on February 18, 2007

uconnphoto.jpgThe title here is the complete content of a text message I received during the 2nd half of the UConn game from the syracusan. As usual, he succeeded in taking all the complex factors that make up an SU basketball performance and encapsulating them in a few select words. Execution was the name of the game Saturday, and while Syracuse’s was far from flawless, they made enough plays in the second half; meanwhile, the new-look Huskies obliged by making no plays.
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Posted in Andy Rautins, Big East, Conference Games, Demetris Nichols, Eric Devendorf, Josh Wright, Mookie Watkins, Paul Harris, Rebounding, Regular Season Games, UConn, Wins | Leave a Comment »

Mike Jarvis is the worst basketball announcer of all time

Posted by syracusan on February 15, 2007

It’s funny, I don’t feel 7-5. But according to the standings that’s SU’s record in the Big East after beating USF tonight. I guess it’s a sign of how negative experiences carry more weight than positives: I can hardly remember us winning any of those games other than the last two; but the losses I can describe in great detail. Are we really two games over .500 in conference? How bad must the rest of these guys be?

USF came out of the gate in this one like a pack of wild dogs, out-hustling us to every loose ball, grabbing every rebound, dominating the offensive glass, and running and gunning all over the court. Luckily for us, they’re USF and not UConn, so they quickly wore themselves out, started making ridiculous turnovers, committing silly fouls, and missing easy layups. By the 2nd half it was obvious their energy was gone, and a few timely 3’s from Andy and Demetris broke their will for good. To beat this team all we had to do was avoid turnovers, and miracle of miracles, we managed it.

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Posted in Andy Rautins, Big East, Conference Games, Demetris Nichols, Eric Devendorf, Josh Wright, Paul Harris, Rebounding, Regular Season Games, South Florida, UConn, Wins | 9 Comments »

Three Reasons to Win

Posted by Tim on February 14, 2007

Josh’s excellent analysis of the South Florida Bulls got me thinking about the consequences of a loss tomorrow night. They aren’t pretty. I’ve pointed out a couple of games already that I felt were must wins, but this game is really, really a must win.

Our NCAA Tournament hopes end if we don’t win tonight. Here are three reasons why:

1. Our RPI is bad enough already. Yeah, I know it’s not all about the computer rankings. But WarrenNolan.com has us at 64 right now, and that’s probably not going to get it done. In WN’s most recent tournament projection, we aren’t even among the last four out. Joe Lunardi at ESPN.com puts our RPI at 62 (Insider subscription required), which is good enough to make his list of four near misses. But more importantly, the lowest ranked at-large team in his field right now is Georgia Tech at 57. They have six wins against top 50 RPI squads. We have two. I’m sure I don’t have to explain why that math doesn’t work out in our favor.

2. Our remaining schedule is too hard. The team can’t look past tonight’s game, but we can. Anyone who’s not developing an ulcer over the UConn game this weekend needs his or her head checked. This is a no-win situation for us: Losing to a bad UConn team at home is embarrassing, but we’re not going to get nearly the credit we deserve for beating them. And that game concludes the “easy” portion of conference play. After that we play at Providence, Georgetown in the Dome, and at Villanova. Oy. (Also, sorry for doubting ‘Nova earlier this year. They aren’t great, but they’re better than us.)

3. A loss would reveal SU as the tin men of the Big East. We should beat them. We have to beat them. And if we don’t, it will seriously damage any lingering confidence I might have otherwise had that we could finish the season strong or make a run in the Big East Tournament.

P.S. Mike Waters thinks a 3-2 finish capped by a Big East Tournament win gets us into the Big Dance. Maybe he’s right. But mark my words: South Florida can’t be one of those losses. After getting beaten at St. John’s, we can’t have any more stumbles.

Posted in Bracketology, Conference Games, Georgetown, NCAA Tournament, Providence, RPI, South Florida, Villanova | 5 Comments »