Syracuse whacked LeMoyne in their second and final exhibition game, 90-50. Does it mean anything? On the whole, not much, but there are some meaningful takeaways.
- Seeing Cole Swider play, you understand why he’s walking right into the starting lineup. Swider shot 15-for-22 in the two exhibition games, including 10-of-15 from long range. He’s simply a dimension that almost no other teams have, especially when teamed up with Buddy Boeheim, Jimmy Boeheim, and Joe Girard III on the floor.
- Swider made jaws drop with two threes around a lay-up in the opening 3:20 of the second half, but Girard set him up on all three scores. Girard handed out nine assists in the game against two turnovers to go with a game-high 20 points. The junior guard’s career high for assists in a game is eight, so this surrounding group of talent may help Girard’s point guard skills develop.
- In addition to all the dimes, there was one more noteworthy number in Girard’s stat line: six free throw attempts. Girard had that many attempts just once last season as he went from over three foul shots a game as a freshman to under two last season. If he continues being aggressive in picking his spots, those are free points.
- SU had 21 assists on 33 field goals after logging 26 helpers on 30 field goals against Pace. While Jim Boeheim cited in the postgame presser that Buddy Boeheim needs to be more aggressive looking to score, having a roster of players building the habit of looking for the next pass is a nice plus.
- Watching Jesse Edwards and Frank Anselem double-clutch going up when they have significant physical advantages over LeMoyne players underscores the continuing need for those two players to add strength. That aspect of their games probably will not get much better this season.
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- That said, Edwards has a very fluid stroke when shooting the ball, suggesting lots of offensive potential to come. He went 4-of-6 from the foul line and his misses come off the rim soft, underscoring his nice touch.
- Jimmy Boeheim playing center was an interesting look for the Orange. The Cornell transfer has tenacity and a pretty good combination of strength and size, at least one good enough to hang for a few minutes at a time, to suggest that he could play the middle in a smaller lineup filled with shooters, possibly to try to erase a major deficit quickly in a future game. Jim Boeheim mentioned after the game that he hopes to never have to use Jimmy at center.
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