Pre Miami Thoughts | Syracusefan.com

Pre Miami Thoughts

General20

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This is my first time writing a predication post about a team we have already played, and it feels a little like beating a dead horse.


So I am going to take it as a given that everybody on this board realizes that Miami plays a 2-2-1 match up zone defense, that Miami held Syracuse to 49 points the last time they played, and that Miami is a pretty bad team overall who is decent defensively, and horrible offensively.


Starting from this point, lets refresh ourselves on what happened in our game against Miami.


First, they played at the slowest pace anybody has played against Syracuse this year – with each team only getting 49 possessions. I see absolutely no reason why Miami won't come out playing this way again (if Syracuse gets a big enough lead this might change). And we know Syracuse is not trying to hurry teams up this year, so expect a slow/low-scoring game.


Syracuse hasn't let up sixty points in a game since Villanova, and even they (the number 4 team in the country) only scored sixty-two. I think its fair to say that anything close to sixty points beats Miami. They play so slow, and they are so poor offensively, that its unlikely they score much more than fifty.


Interesting fact about our last game with Miami: Nobody on Miami scored in double figures.


Second, Syracuse got a lot of clean looks against Miami that they simply missed.


Third, Syracuse was actually pretty efficient against Miami except for one long 10+ minute scoring drought. Obviously their efficiency during those ten minutes was zero, but outside of those ten minutes Syracuse was above its average season efficiency.


I suspect that long drought was a fluke, and I suspect Syracuse will look a lot better against Miami this time around despite the game being played at Miami, but we can't just ignore the fact that Syracuse only scored 49 points last time. Especially since Miami's only realistic chance at winning is to hold Syracuse in the 40's or low 50's again. So lets break down their zone. If Syracuse can score against it, they will in easily.


Miami plays a 2-2-1 match up zone. You don't see much match up zone in college, so you might not know exactly what it is. Its basically a zone/man to man hybrid.


Miami's version is called a 2-2-1, but its not usually in that position. It should actually be called a 2-2 zone with 1 on the ball. If you have ever seen a box-and-one, it looks a lot like that. There is one defender set up at all four points of the paint (the box) and one defender out on the ball (the one).


The only difference between a box-and-one and what Miami does is that a box and one has one specific defensive player playing man to man against one specific offensive player, while the other four guys play zone. In Miami's system all five guys play zone with one player extending out to play man on whoever has the ball, and the player who does this will change depending on where the ball is.


Against Syracuse they had whoever was covering Grant sag off into the lane and dare him to shoot, therefore making their box zone (which is already designed to fill the lane) crowd the lane even more. It worked pretty well as Jerami only shot 2-7 in the game. He is looking a lot more comfortable shooting from the top of the key lately, so I expect Boeheim to ask him to shoot a little more often against Miami, and I expect Grant to hit a few jumpers.

Cooney only shot 2-12 in that game, but I look at that as a bit of a fluke because he got a lot of good looks. That is because the nature of Miami's defense is, they rush out to cover the guy with the ball. Usually there is someone assigned to harass Cooney and make sure he never catches the ball in position to shoot. The way Miami plays should make it a little easier on Cooney, whenit comes to both shooting the ball and driving to the basket. Even though Cooney only made two shots last time, he was still our second leading scorer with 11 points because he was able to pump fake and get into the lane and draw fouls.


If you watched Miami play Duke, you saw Miami get killed on the boards. This is because Duke plays four and often times five players at a time who can hit jump shots. This spreads Miami's zone out a lot which makes it vulnerable to offensive rebounds. Miami's zone will not extend nearly as far on Syracuse, so offensive rebounds will not be as easy to get as they were against Duke.


Duke was a bad match up for Miami in general, and I expect Miami to look a lot better against Syracuse.


Predictions:


Cooney hits a bunch of threes, and gets to the line and scores in double figures.


Grant hits a few jump shots.


Syracuse beat's Miami 50 something to 40 something. A win that won't impress anybody much but will be bigger than it looks due to the slow pace of the game.
 

General20

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Good stuff General!

Over Under 4 minutes for Roberson?

We know Boeheim does not trust him against their defense. My guess is he only plays if Syracuse is up big, but they did have a week to prepare for this game, so I suppose its possible that he had a really good week of practice and gets rewarded with extra PT.
 

mayselc

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I think JAB will press more in this game to get some easy baskets off turnovers. Just put Baye back there and press with Fair, SilentG, Ennis and Grant for 5 minutes each half and we win this by 15.
 

CuseFaninVT

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I think JAB will press more in this game to get some easy baskets off turnovers. Just put Baye back there and press with Fair, SilentG, Ennis and Grant for 5 minutes each half and we win this by 15.

I might agree with you if we still had the option of DC2, but with him gone, I don't see JB putting our centers in any situation like that which exposes the bigs to more fouls.
 

Dave85

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I thought Christmas had some good success in the low-mid-post against Miami. I think he flashes to the paint and gets a few of his jump hook shots to go in. I think Syracuse will do better against the 1-2-2 this time. Hopefully, JB added a few read-react motion offense type plays into the arsenal. The way to beat the zone is with lots of passing and movement without the ball. Pass inside and then kick out. I think the Orange are going to win this one.
 

Fly Rodder

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Nice write up. And thanks for the 2-2-1 lesson.

A win that won't impress anybody much but will be bigger than it looks due to the slow pace of the game.

It amazes me how many paid sports analysts completely fail to mention this. OMG Syracuse only scored 54 points and only won by 5 points!!!1! Duh. 5 points in a low possession game is like 12 in a high possession game.
 

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