Syracuse Bubble Watch: Orange hopes look bleak after brutal Saturday

Syracuse's hopes are bleak
Syracuse’s hopes are bleak

The day before the NCAA selection committee announces its field was not a good one for Syracuse.

UConn beat Temple in their American Conference semifinal, likely ensuring the Huskies a spot in the tournament, even if they don’t win the conference. Temple probably already has a bid sewn up, too. Guh.

Both A-10 games went against the Orange as Saint Joseph’s and VCU both won.

Michigan got hammered in the Big Ten semifinals by Purdue, but that may have been too little, too late.

San Diego State got tripped up by Fresno State in the Mountain West title game. The Aztecs have only one good win (California) and lost the rest of their games against top 50 RPI teams. The only upside is if they are below SU in the committee’s pecking order.

At least both games went SU’s way in the SEC, as Georgia and LSU both got whacked.

» Related: Syracuse Bubble Watch: Michigan, UConn wins hurt Orange

Updated late Saturday night, here’s Joe Lunardi’s opinion:

  • 8 seeds – Saint Joseph’s, Providence, VCU, USC
  • 9 seeds –Oregon State, Butler, Wichita State, Texas Tech
  • 10 seeds – Pittsburgh, Gonzaga, Connecticut, St Bonaventure
  • 11 seeds – Cincinnati, Yale, Temple/Monmouth, San Diego State/South Carolina
  • first four out – Saint Mary’s, Michigan, Vanderbilt, Syracuse
  • next four out – Valparaiso, Georgia

Hey, Joe, good to know that being routed by Purdue means you move up in the “first four out” group.

The remaining games of consequence on Sunday:

American: Connecticut vs. Memphis (3:15pm Eastern, ESPN): Sadly, the Orange now need UConn to win. Now that the Huskies have almost certainly grabbed an at-large bid, the worst possible result for Syracuse is a 19-14 Memphis team seizing the American title and taking an automatic bid and eliminating an at-large spot altogether.

Atlantic 10: Saint Joseph’s vs. VCU (12:30pm Eastern, CBS): The outcome of this game almost certainly does not matter. VCU’s resume is the worse of the two, so Orange fans should be rooting for Lunardi’s alma mater/employer (he is the Saint Joseph’s analyst on radio broadcasts of men’s basketball games, among other things).

Orange fans, if you have something you rely on for good luck, you’re likely going to need it tonight.

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About Jim Stechschulte 894 Articles
A 1996 graduate of Syracuse University, Jim has reported on Syracuse sports for the Syracuse University Alumni Club of Southern California on nearly a decade. He has also written a fantasy basketball column published by He currently resides in Syracuse.