In the days leading up to each game, The Juice Online will tackle a burning question about the Syracuse basketball team in “Tipoff Countdown.”
Today’s topic: The Orange committed 18 turnovers against San Diego State on Sunday. Are you concerned about all of the turnovers?
Though No. 8 Syracuse opened the season with a 62-49 win over then-No. 20 San Diego State, there were still some concerns from the game.
The most glaring problem was the 18 turnovers the Orange committed, with half of them coming from SU’s starting backcourt of Michael Carter-Williams (4) and Brandon Triche (5).
To be fair, Carter-Williams and Triche were forced to take the ball inside because of the outdoor conditions. The Orange only attempted four 3-pointers because of gusts of wind, as the game was played outside aboard the USS Midway.
Once inside the paint, the guards were met with fierce opposition.
“San Diego State, when you watched them, if you make the dribble penetration, they have five guys back in the lane,” Syracuse coach Jim Boeheim said. “They have five. We don’t ever have five guys back in the lane playing zone. They’re playing a man to man with huge zone principles.”
But Syracuse played in two exhibitions prior to the start of the regular season, and had turnover problems there, as well. Again Pace, SU coughed the ball up 19 times, and the starting backcourt was one of the main culprits again. Triche and Carter-Williams tallied nine.
Last season, the Orange mainly used three guards: Triche, Dion Waiters and Scoop Jardine. The three combined for 368 assists to 184 turnovers for close to a 2-to-1 ratio.
Carter-Williams, who played sparingly as a fourth guard, was 54-16 (3.38-to-1).
“There are definitely things we need to fix,” Carter-Williams said after the Pace game. “We definitely had too many turnovers, especially between me and Brandon. We just need to have better communication.”