ATR: Orange steal New York …
Around the Rim (ATR): Here’s an interesting – and telling – stat from Syracuse‘s two-day title run at the Coaches vs. Cancer finale in New York: 24 steals. The Orange garnered 14 thefts vs. Ohio State and another 10 vs. Carolina. It helped SU shoot close to 55 percent during their trip to Madison Square Garden. Opponents shot just 39 percent. Two impressive wins for ‘Cuse, no doubt. At the same time, this is November and the Buckeyes and Tar Heels don’t often see a well-played 2-3 zone. It’s also worth noting that the Heels, in particular, are breaking in a new point guard – not named Ty Lawson. Take away: If Syracuse puts together a solid Big East campaign, these two wins will boost seeding in March. Additional notes …
California has to be disappointed with their showing in the Big Apple. The Bears missed both chances to score an important non-league win. Then again, they played without a couple of key players – namely Theo Robertson. At this point, Cal relies heavily on perimeter shots.
San Juan: Mississippi and Villanova play for the title. Dayton and Kansas State square off in the consolation. Indiana got outrebounded 52-32 by Boston University Friday night and lost to the Terriers. IU coach Tom Crean talked about his team’s lack of physical play. That would pretty much explain a minus-20 rebound margin.
It hasn’t been a great start for the Missouri Valley. Northern Iowa lost to DePaul Friday. The MVC is now 0-2 in notable non-league matchups – Creighton lost at Dayton. The Blue Jays upcoming game with Michigan suddenly looms large as a resume builder.
Strong start for the Atlantic 10. Dayton has wins over Dayton and Georgia Tech. St. Joseph’s beat Boston College on Friday.
Breaking 80 again? Illinois has scored at least 80 points in its first two wins – something they did just twice last year. Freshman guard Brandon Paul has made the biggest splash – averaging 21 points per game in his first two college outings.
Keep track of key wins and losses throughout the season under Team Capsules. And as always, have a thought? Send a rebound. In closing … seems to be quite an interest in the Big-10/ACC challenge; a more current preview will arrive soon.