RTC Live: Syracuse @ Seton HallPosted by rtmsf on January 8th, 2011
Game #94. RTC Live is back at the Rock to see what the Orange are made of traveling on the road in the Big East.
What a difference seven weeks can make. Seton Hall brought back a roster packed with talented veterans and a disciplined head coach. They may have dropped a close road game to A-10 powerhouse Temple, but they played to the last possession and followed it with a huge home win over 2010 Ivy League champion Cornell. Then things started to go bad for Coach Kevin Willard, in his first year at the head of the Seton Hall program. A broken wrist sidelined “anytime, anywhere” scoring threat Jeremy Hazell, a longer than expected rehabilitation period limited all purpose forward/center Herb Pope’s effectiveness and the unexpected transfer of promising sophomore forward Ferrakohn Hall thinned the front court reserves even further. The Pirates could not hold halftime leads over A-10 teams Dayton and Richmond at the end of December, and have stumbled to a 1-2 start in Big East Conference play, leaving the rookie head coach with many more questions than answers. For Syracuse, the season started with a rookie of the year whose learning curve was far longer than anticipated, a slew of complementary players who would be tasked with filling the leadership (and scoring…) roles vacated by the departed Wesley Johnson, Andy Rautins and Arinze Onuaku. Scoop Jardine, Rick Jackson, Brandon Triche and Kris Joseph had prospered in Coach Boeheim’s team-oriented 2-3 zone defense and in the offensive shadows of the departed stars, but were they ready to step up? The Orange swept Michigan and Georgia Tech aside to win the Legends Classic in Atlantic City and then beat (then) #7 Michigan State in the Jimmy V. Classic at Madison Square Garden. The Orange have charged out to a 2-0 start in Big East Conference play, heading it seems, in a very different direction than the Pirates. Seton Hall, led by Herb Pope, Jeff Robinson, Keon Lawrence and Jordan Theodore will try to turn their season around as they face off against Rick Jackson, Kris Joseph and Scoop Jardine. Join RTC Live as we blog Syracuse at Seton Hall, Saturday at noon from the Rock in downtown Newark, New Jersey.