The Downside - Illinois | Syracusefan.com

The Downside - Illinois

SWC75

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- That was a G-Robesque performance by our basketball team. We showed flashes but most of it was painful to watch. Offensively, were the little engine that couldn’t. Joe Girard is now 2/25 in his last three games. He only attempted 3 shots, which perhaps belongs on the upside. Judah Mintz joined him with a 3/16 performance. He had the first -8NP performance, (I don’t keep historical records on that). I can recall Chris Bell augmented his 3rd rebound in four games by going 3 for 9, 2 for 8 from the arc. (He thinks) he has one job and he didn’t do it. Justin Taylor followed up his 6/9FG 10/13FT performance against Bryant with a 2/7 and 0/0 performance. Even Jesse Edwards who is our best player, (not Mintz) was 3 for 9 from the field. Overall we shot 28% from the field, including 27% inside the arc, 29% outside of it and 53% from the line.

- This is still a bunch of players, not a team. They don't look for each other or share the ball. They don't position themselves for passes. They don't set screens or picks enough. That makes them very easy to defend and to defeat.

- We also had 17 turnovers to 7 for Illinois, an area where usually have an advantage. We were outrebounded by 4 so the Illini effectively had 14 more possessions than we did.

- Benny Williams is ready for the NBA. He had 6 fouls. It was the third straight SU game (FB + BB) in which we’ve had a player ejected. In those games, our players got whistled for violations of the rules 59 times. This was the 6th basketball game in a row in which we got called for fouls more frequently than the opposition. All these officiating crews can’t be corrupt or angry with us.

- It was the second straight press conference in which Jim Boeheim questioned where or not one of his players should be playing. They are your recruits, Jim.

- Yes, these players will improve. Jim Boeheim is betting on that. He has no commitments for 2023 and said he’s working on the 2024 class. So this crew will be Syracuse basketball for the next two seasons. Or will they? Edwards, Girard and Torrence are seniors. They could take advantage of Covid years but will they? Will anyone jump to the pros? (Unlikely based on what we saw tonight.) Who will hit the transfer portal? This year we brought in one transfer: Mounir Hima, our backup center. Fran Friscella succinctly said that the difference in tonight’s game weas that both Illinois and Syracuse had to rebuild this year and the Illini did it with transfers while we did it with freshmen and it showed.
 
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STEVEHOLT

There are FIVE letters in the name BLAIN.
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