Syracuse will meet Indiana for the second time this year when the two teams square off in the ACC/Big 10 Challenge at the Carrier Dome:
TIME TO MOVE ON FROM SMART?: Syracuse and Indiana are forever tied together by the 1987 title game, where a Keith Smart buzzer-beater lifted the Hoosiers to a 74-73 win, denying Orange head coach Jim Boeheim his first national championship. A lot has happened since then, including a 2003 national title for Syracuse and a 61-50 upset win for the Orange in the Sweet 16 round of the NCAA tournament over the Hoosiers. Boeheim had a chance to reflect on the ’87 title game in March, and seemed to view it has a distant — albeit still painful — memory. “You never get over games like that,” Boeheim said. “I got over it in 2003. That’s when I really — I probably thought about it for those 26 years most of the time. I never think about it anymore.”
SCOUTING THE HOOSIERS: Indiana looks like a completely different team than the one Syracuse faced in the Sweet 16. The Hoosiers lost a pair of high lottery picks in guard Victor Oladipo (Orlando Magic) and big man Cody Zeller (Charlotte Bobcats), who were taken with the second and fourth pick in the NBA draft. Still, Syracuse should remember point guard Yogi Ferrell and wing Will Sheehey. Ferrell, now a sophomore, has matured into Indiana’s top scorer at 18.1 ppg and has upped his 3-point percentage from 30 to 38 percent. Super frosh Noah Vonleh has averaged 12.9 points and 10.4 rebounds, but the 6-10 forward played just 10 minutes in a loss to No. 18 Connecticut after Vonleh was saddled with foul trouble.
HISTORICALLY SPEAKING: Syracuse has a 4-1 advantage in the all-time series. Michael Carter-Williams led Syracuse in their last matchup with 24 points, 5 rebounds and 4 steals and the 2-3 zone held the Hoosiers to 33 percent shooting from the field, and 3-15 from downtown. The Orange took a 76-63 win over Indiana in the Maui Classic in 1998.
GAME INFORMATION: Tuesday, Dec. 3 at 7:15 p.m. at the Carrier Dome. TV: ESPN.