The Case For Optimism | Syracusefan.com

The Case For Optimism

Ceerqqq

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Predictions are always problematic, given that there are so many known-unknowns and unknown-unknowns that always show up.

On the one hand, we have those college basketball fans who are quite concerned about being overly optimistic in their expectations, fearing they could end up being revealed as not being "realistic" after the season has been played out. I'm not sure why this is such a horrifying fate to dread, unless you're a media CBB 'expert' with a reputation to protect.

I'm one of those fans who is eager to find reasons to be optimistic about the forthcoming season and it doesn't scare me at all that my optimism might end up being revealed to have been misplaced, due to some unknowns I was unaware of. If this year's team is more flawed than I'm hoping it will be, I will simply adjust my expectations as the season unfolds. No problem.

Right now, I'm thinking that this team could be better--maybe even significantly better--than the team we saw last year in the NCAAT.

Offense: I think having three 3pt snipers on the court could--if they are ideally exploited--make this team capable of beating any other team in the country. Most of the best teams we will face will feature multiple Future NBA Big Men who will prove to be difficult to stop and/or match in the paint. But with Cole, Buddy, and Joe, we have weapons that can fully negate those front court advantages that those Super Teams have.

Crucially, I expect that Joe will prove to be a far better PG this year at least in part because there are now two other guys who can shoot the three as well as he can. I think Joe has felt the past two seasons that he needed to score from deep in order for the team to win so he was consciously looking for his shot opportunities. But that's all changed. I think Joe now sees that he will earn supreme praise if he is able to achieve ridiculous assist totals while at the same time always nailing his open three-pt opportunities as they come, in rhythm, late in the shot clock.

Boeheim knows that getting his team to fully exploit his shooters and the spacing it will create will be his most powerful weapon when taking on the best of The Best. So far, it seems like they're getting the message.

Defense: I think this team has the potential to be significantly better on defense than last year. Improved play by Jesse and Frank will be one of the important factors in that equation. I expect they'll continue to improve over the course of the season, making protection of the rim one of the team's defensive strengths this year.

I think most of last year we were working with undersized forwards, though QG definitely showed that he could grab enough rebounds to win games for us. Yes, he and AG were superior athletes but my impression was that neither of them really had the sense of how to attack the passing lanes (Robert did) the way our forwards need to in order for the zone to become the turnover-forcing machine we've seen in past editions.

In one of the exhibitions I saw Jimmy read a pressured pass from the corner and was able to break it up from the weak side, which encourage me to think that he'll be making those kind of plays for us this season. I don't know about Cole yet (I'm hopeful) but I do know that Benny has the skill/instincts to become a terror on defense for us.

The zone turns into a real monster for us when everybody's anticipating the next pass. Sure, athletic ability helps a lot, especially to recover when you're out of position, but even less athletic players can make the zone fearsome if their anticipatory instincts are well-honed. I'm hopeful that this is the case this year...we shall see.

I expect to see incremental improvement in Joe's and Buddy's defense at the top of the zone this year. Two years ago it was atrocious; last year (by the end of the season) it was much better. This year I expect they'll be solid.


Overall, I'm expecting to see improvement in both offense and defense this year over what we saw at the end of the season last year...mostly because of the Jim Boeheim variable. On paper, Syracuse isn't any better this year than probably 40 other teams across the country. LOTS of teams have 4-star players and the most highly-ranked have multiple 5-star players on their teams. If we simply look at the rosters of teams and the rankings of their players, Syracuse should expect to be on The Bubble once again.

But the same was true of last year's team, which had zero 5-star players. But then we ended up in the Sweet Sixteen anyway. In my opinion, last year was one of Boeheim's greatest coaching achievements. By the 2nd week of January, no one was expecting to see the team playing in the Sweet Sixteen. The criticism was loud and there was 'internal dissension' on the team. But Jim listened to his own counsel, developed his team his way, and the result was supremely gratifying.

The ultimate reason I'm optimistic about this season because of the Jim Boeheim factor. Because I've seen him do it time after time, I fully expect to see him develop this year's team to where it is defeating Top Ten teams by the end of the season, possibly even sooner. Sure...things could go wrong...but sometimes they don't.

I intend to enjoy this season with high hopes right from start. If things go south, then it is what it is and I'll adjust my expectations accordingly. But in the meantime, I'm ready for lots of celebrations...
Happy Brad Pitt GIF
 
Last edited:

Orangezoo

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We've beaten to death all off season the good and the bad and now enter the real thing.

Ultimately what will dictate this season is whether we go out there and take games to the opponent with the starters leaning on experience and talent to get to work. We saw this at season end last year and then really in the ACCT and NCAA's.

Come out and make it clear we know how to and expect to win not just hope to and by leaning on one or two guys to make sure that happens.
 

bballbeadle

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I very much like your optimism! I think it is great for our mental health when we can look forward to our games and not dread them. There were two years (2017-18?) - everything BC is murky to me - when I had a pit in my stomach anticipating games.

I also understand it doesn’t seem cool to some to be optimistic, and one can be labeled “naive.” I also know you are sometimes dissed for your unwavering admiration of Boeheim. So what? Coach has let me down more for his negativity during press conferences than decision-making during games. Despite that, I admire him, too. He’s in an elite circle of college coaches and we will cry a river when he’s gone.

My hope for this year’s team is that they GO for it from the first tip. Often there seems to be hesitancy, perhaps being afraid of the hook. I like how Swider takes his shot, with apologies to none. If he is hot, that is going to motivate Buddy not to hold back, and that is a contest I would very much enjoy seeing. If we are hot from the get go, I would like to see us ride the wave, not back off, which sometimes it seems we do.

I am so happy to be back at the games! The mask makes it harder to chit chat, which I don’t like, but I seem to be able to cheer with it, and that’s more important. Go SU!
 

SU94

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I very much like your optimism! I think it is great for our mental health when we can look forward to our games and not dread them. There were two years (2017-18?) - everything BC is murky to me - when I had a pit in my stomach anticipating games.

I also understand it doesn’t seem cool to some to be optimistic, and one can be labeled “naive.” I also know you are sometimes dissed for your unwavering admiration of Boeheim. So what? Coach has let me down more for his negativity during press conferences than decision-making during games. Despite that, I admire him, too. He’s in an elite circle of college coaches and we will cry a river when he’s gone.

My hope for this year’s team is that they GO for it from the first tip. Often there seems to be hesitancy, perhaps being afraid of the hook. I like how Swider takes his shot, with apologies to none. If he is hot, that is going to motivate Buddy not to hold back, and that is a contest I would very much enjoy seeing. If we are hot from the get go, I would like to see us ride the wave, not back off, which sometimes it seems we do.

I am so happy to be back at the games! The mask makes it harder to chit chat, which I don’t like, but I seem to be able to cheer with it, and that’s more important. Go SU!
I think the collective college playing experience of this team will help us win a few extra games. It's not a guarantee by any means, some experienced teams struggle, but this 8-9 player unit just might mesh well, even if three key pieces gained their experience at Nova, Marquette and Cornell. As an added bonus, a good number of these kids had experience playing with one another either locally or on the AAU scene before joining the program. Now, ... if we can rebound just a smidge above average ...
 

RoatanCuse

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Predictions are always problematic, given that there are so many known-unknowns and unknown-unknowns that always show up.

On the one hand, we have those college basketball fans who are quite concerned about being overly optimistic in their expectations, fearing they could end up being revealed as not being "realistic" after the season has been played out. I'm not sure why this is such a horrifying fate to dread, unless you're a media CBB 'expert' with a reputation to protect.

I'm one of those fans who is eager to find reasons to be optimistic about the forthcoming season and it doesn't scare me at all that my optimism might end up being revealed to have been misplaced, due to some unknowns I was unaware of. If this year's team is more flawed than I'm hoping it will be, I will simply adjust my expectations as the season unfolds. No problem.

Right now, I'm thinking that this team could be better--maybe even significantly better--than the team we saw last year in the NCAAT.

Offense: I think having three 3pt snipers on the court could--if they are ideally exploited--make this team capable of beating any other team in the country. Most of the best teams we will face will feature multiple Future NBA Big Men who will prove to be difficult to stop and/or match in the paint. But with Cole, Buddy, and Joe, we have weapons that can fully negate those front court advantages that other Super Teams have.

Crucially, I expect that Joe will prove to be a far better PG this year at least in part because there are now two other guys who can shoot the three as well as he can. I think Joe has felt the past two seasons that he needed to score from deep in order for the team to win so he was consciously looking for his shot opportunities. But that's all changed. I think Joe now sees that he will earn supreme praise if he is able to achieve ridiculous assist totals while at the same time always nailing his open three-pt opportunities as they come, in rhythm, late in the shot clock.

Boeheim knows that getting his team to fully exploit his shooters and the spacing it will create will be his most powerful weapon when taking on the best of The Best. So far, it seems like they're getting the message.

Defense: I think this team has the potential to be significantly better on defense than last year. Improved play by Jesse and Frank will be one of the important factors in that equation. I expect they'll continue to improve over the course of the season, making protection of the rim one of the team's defensive strengths this year.

I think most of last year we were working with undersized forwards, though QG definitely showed that he could grab enough rebounds to win games for us. Yes, he and AG were superior athletes but my impression was that neither of them really had the sense of how to attack the passing lanes (Robert did) the way our forwards need to in order for the zone to become the fearsome monster we have seen in past editions.

In 1 of the exhibitions I saw Jimmy read a pressured pass from the corner and was able to break it up from the weak side, which encourage me to think that he'll be making those kind of plays for us this season. I don't know about Cole yet (I'm hopeful) but I do know that Benny has the skill/instincts to become a terror on defense for us.

The zone turns into a real monster for us when everybody's anticipating the next pass. Sure, athletic ability helps a lot, especially to recover when you're out of position, but even less athletic players can make the zone fearsome if their anticipatory instincts are well-honed. I'm hopeful that this is the case this year...we shall see.

I expect to see incremental improvement in Joe's and Buddy's defense at the top of the zone this year. Two years ago it was atrocious; last year was much better. This year I expect they'll be solid.


Overall, I'm expecting to see improvement in both offense and defense this year over what we saw at the end of the season last year...mostly because of the Jim Boeheim variable. On paper, Syracuse isn't any better this year than probably 40 other teams across the country. LOTS of teams have 4-star players and the most highly-ranked have multiple 5-star players on their teams. If we simply look at the rosters of teams and the rankings of their players, Syracuse should expect to be on The Bubble once again.

But the same was true of last year's team, which had zero 5-star players. But then we ended up in the Sweet Sixteen anyway. In my opinion, last year was one of Boeheim's greatest coaching achievements. By the 2nd week of January, no one was expecting to see the team playing in the Sweet Sixteen. The criticism was loud and there was 'internal dissension' on the team. But Jim listened to his own counsel, developed his team his way, and the result was supremely gratifying.

The ultimate reason I'm optimistic about this season because of the Jim Boeheim factor. Because I've seen him do it time after time, I fully expect to see him develop this year's team to where it is defeating Top Ten teams by the end of the season, possibly even sooner. Sure...things could go wrong...but sometimes they don't.

I intend to enjoy this season with high hopes right from start. If things go south, then it is what it is and I'll adjust my expectations accordingly. But in the meantime, I'm ready for lots of celebrations...
Happy Brad Pitt GIF
Very nice post. Thanks for the uplift.
 

Dick_in_MI

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I think the collective college playing experience of this team will help us win a few extra games. It's not a guarantee by any means, some experienced teams struggle, but this 8-9 player unit just might mesh well, even if three key pieces gained their experience at Nova, Marquette and Cornell. As an added bonus, a good number of these kids had experience playing with one another either locally or on the AAU scene before joining the program. Now, ... if we can rebound just a smidge above average ...

Really, the only thing I am currently worried about is rebounding. We were not a good rebounding team last year and we have not set the world on fire off the boards in our two exhibition games.

If we could get some points off the bench from anyone not named Benny that would be a nice plus too.
 

NorSyr66

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All good posts. Just a few more days and let the good times roll!! I feel the key to this years team is chemistry and unselfishness. Of course the fore mentioned rebounds will be a concern all year long but the zone defense, as we all know, results in lower rebound numbers. I honestly think a few teams in the ACC are in for a big surprise. Lets Go Orange!
 

djcon57

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“I expect to see incremental improvement in Joe's and Buddy's defense at the top of the zone this year. Two years ago it was atrocious; last year was much better. This year I expect they'll be solid.”

looking at every possible metric, this is just untrue.

I guess unless you count “Jb says so” as a metric.
I have no doubt they should be better this year.
if they aren’t for any reason, we will not make the tourney.
 

djcon57

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Really, the only thing I am currently worried about is rebounding. We were not a good rebounding team last year and we have not set the world on fire off the boards in our two exhibition games.

If we could get some points off the bench from anyone not named Benny that would be a nice plus too.
I have to think playing an actual center will help as we go on this year, we saw what Jesse did in some games last year where we were getting killed on the boards when he came in
 

Orangezoo

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Let's be real. We must make all our opponents days reading our board. We have by far the least Homer board in the country. Not sure what to make of it but it keeps every day fresh.
 

Orangezoo

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duck and cover vintage GIF by absurdnoise


The typical post positive post response here.. we know how to keep it real. Don't flicking come to me saying we are gonna be better!! It's total BS we are headed for Bubbletown!! Get it right!!

Absolutely admit I've been on of those firing away with cynicism myself it's just kind of funny to watch us as a fanbase from afar.
 

Capt. Tuttle

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Predictions are always problematic, given that there are so many known-unknowns and unknown-unknowns that always show up.

On the one hand, we have those college basketball fans who are quite concerned about being overly optimistic in their expectations, fearing they could end up being revealed as not being "realistic" after the season has been played out. I'm not sure why this is such a horrifying fate to dread, unless you're a media CBB 'expert' with a reputation to protect.

I'm one of those fans who is eager to find reasons to be optimistic about the forthcoming season and it doesn't scare me at all that my optimism might end up being revealed to have been misplaced, due to some unknowns I was unaware of. If this year's team is more flawed than I'm hoping it will be, I will simply adjust my expectations as the season unfolds. No problem.

Right now, I'm thinking that this team could be better--maybe even significantly better--than the team we saw last year in the NCAAT.

Offense: I think having three 3pt snipers on the court could--if they are ideally exploited--make this team capable of beating any other team in the country. Most of the best teams we will face will feature multiple Future NBA Big Men who will prove to be difficult to stop and/or match in the paint. But with Cole, Buddy, and Joe, we have weapons that can fully negate those front court advantages that those Super Teams have.

Crucially, I expect that Joe will prove to be a far better PG this year at least in part because there are now two other guys who can shoot the three as well as he can. I think Joe has felt the past two seasons that he needed to score from deep in order for the team to win so he was consciously looking for his shot opportunities. But that's all changed. I think Joe now sees that he will earn supreme praise if he is able to achieve ridiculous assist totals while at the same time always nailing his open three-pt opportunities as they come, in rhythm, late in the shot clock.

Boeheim knows that getting his team to fully exploit his shooters and the spacing it will create will be his most powerful weapon when taking on the best of The Best. So far, it seems like they're getting the message.

Defense: I think this team has the potential to be significantly better on defense than last year. Improved play by Jesse and Frank will be one of the important factors in that equation. I expect they'll continue to improve over the course of the season, making protection of the rim one of the team's defensive strengths this year.

I think most of last year we were working with undersized forwards, though QG definitely showed that he could grab enough rebounds to win games for us. Yes, he and AG were superior athletes but my impression was that neither of them really had the sense of how to attack the passing lanes (Robert did) the way our forwards need to in order for the zone to become the fearsome monster we have seen in past editions.

In 1 of the exhibitions I saw Jimmy read a pressured pass from the corner and was able to break it up from the weak side, which encourage me to think that he'll be making those kind of plays for us this season. I don't know about Cole yet (I'm hopeful) but I do know that Benny has the skill/instincts to become a terror on defense for us.

The zone turns into a real monster for us when everybody's anticipating the next pass. Sure, athletic ability helps a lot, especially to recover when you're out of position, but even less athletic players can make the zone fearsome if their anticipatory instincts are well-honed. I'm hopeful that this is the case this year...we shall see.

I expect to see incremental improvement in Joe's and Buddy's defense at the top of the zone this year. Two years ago it was atrocious; last year was much better. This year I expect they'll be solid.


Overall, I'm expecting to see improvement in both offense and defense this year over what we saw at the end of the season last year...mostly because of the Jim Boeheim variable. On paper, Syracuse isn't any better this year than probably 40 other teams across the country. LOTS of teams have 4-star players and the most highly-ranked have multiple 5-star players on their teams. If we simply look at the rosters of teams and the rankings of their players, Syracuse should expect to be on The Bubble once again.

But the same was true of last year's team, which had zero 5-star players. But then we ended up in the Sweet Sixteen anyway. In my opinion, last year was one of Boeheim's greatest coaching achievements. By the 2nd week of January, no one was expecting to see the team playing in the Sweet Sixteen. The criticism was loud and there was 'internal dissension' on the team. But Jim listened to his own counsel, developed his team his way, and the result was supremely gratifying.

The ultimate reason I'm optimistic about this season because of the Jim Boeheim factor. Because I've seen him do it time after time, I fully expect to see him develop this year's team to where it is defeating Top Ten teams by the end of the season, possibly even sooner. Sure...things could go wrong...but sometimes they don't.

I intend to enjoy this season with high hopes right from start. If things go south, then it is what it is and I'll adjust my expectations accordingly. But in the meantime, I'm ready for lots of celebrations...
Happy Brad Pitt GIF
Two words: Jim Boeheim
 

721Comstock

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This is the second thread in an hour I have had to clean due to political posts.

I've had enough.

If you can't follow the rules, you won't be here to follow the rules.


Cancel culture!! :p

Back on topic - I’m optimistic for this year, due to shooting, experience, and culture.
We could lose some games early as guys sort out their roles, but this team (if healthy) should be pretty lethal on O by the end of the season.
 

UpstateSM

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I'm sure there's a better place on here to say this but I want to drop 85 on UConn in the Atlantis title game so bad hahaha I can't wait for Tuesday
 

bballbeadle

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duck and cover vintage GIF by absurdnoise


The typical post positive post response here.. we know how to keep it real. Don't flicking come to me saying we are gonna be better!! It's total BS we are headed for Bubbletown!! Get it right!!

Absolutely admit I've been on of those firing away with cynicism myself it's just kind of funny to watch us as a fanbase from afar.
So do you actually have to leave your body to watch us? :)
 

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