Quick Hits: Syracuse basketball’s flaws exposed in loss to Colgate

Nov 20, 2021; Syracuse, New York, USA; Syracuse head coach Jim Boeheim speaks to the media following SU's 100-85 loss to Colgate at the Carrier Dome. Mandatory Credit: Brett Gustin/The Juice Online.

Syracuse was stunned by Colgate, 100-85, on Saturday evening at the Carrier Dome. Here are some quick hits from the game:

  • Colgate’s extreme patience on offense exploited a general lack of footspeed among the Syracuse guards and wings. While the Orange defenders almost always made correct defensive rotations, the Raiders were quick to snap the ball to the next player, creating open look after open look from three, as well as plenty of backdoor layups in the second half. Colgate was 9-of-13 on lay-ups in the second half, plus a dunk.
  • The SU defense was also exploited when Jim Boeheim opted to put on the full court press. On multiple occasions, the Orange had three defenders trapping the man with the ball, but were beaten with passes upcourt, leading to easy scores.

  • Against a much smaller team, Syracuse players missed 18 shots in the paint, including eight that were listed on the shot chart as lay-ups. That number does not include the errant alley-oop attempt from Joe Girard III to Benny Williams that ended as a jump ball after being wedged between the rim and backboard.
  • It’s obviously early in the season, but Cole Swider’s long-range stroke needs to show up soon. The Villanova transfer is now 3-for-15 on threes after missing all four of his shots from deep against Colgate.
  • While Colgate’s hot shooting was the primary driving force in their first half rally, Syracuse had several offensive possessions that ended in bad decisions to aid them. Benny Williams was responsible for a couple in the same possession, airballing a three-pointer, then committing a charge.
  • Symir Torrence was credited with seven field goal attempts in 10:26 of on-court time. That is probably not his ideal role.

» Related: Jim Boeheim continues to win in the transfer portal

  • The Orange open play in the Battle 4 Atlantis on Wednesday when they will take on Virginia Commonwealth at Imperial Arena at Paradise Island in the Bahamas. The Rams (2-2) dropped a 56-54 decision to Tennessee-Chattanooga on Saturday.
  • VCU has struggled greatly on offense coming out of the gate, averaging 50.8 points on 40.4 percent shooting while committing 17.5 turnovers a game. Vince Williams Jr. scored 21 points on Saturday, lifting his team-leading average to 12.3 points per game.
  • Wednesday’s game is set for a 5:00pm Eastern tip with ESPN2 handling television responsibilities.

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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 NBA.com. He currently resides in Syracuse.