Beat writers unanimously predict Syracuse win against Niagara

first_img Facebook Twitter Google+ Published on December 27, 2019 at 10:16 pm Coming off back-to-back home wins against Oakland and North Florida, Syracuse (7-5, 1-1 Atlantic Coast) hosts Niagara (2-8) on Saturday with a chance to enter conference play on a winning streak. The Purple Eagles represent the final nonconference opponent on the Orange’s schedule, and Greg Paulus’ group enters the Carrier Dome without a win since Dec. 8. Here’s how The Daily Orange beat writers think Syracuse will fare. Nick Alvarez (10-2)Nonconference’dSyracuse 80, Niagara 60 This prediction is rooted less in Syracuse’s ability but more in Niagara’s ineptitude. The Purple Eagles manage to shoot free throws better than the Orange and turn the ball over less, but that’s about it. Niagara ranks near the bottom of the country in adjusted offensive and defensive efficiency per KenPom and that should allow Syracuse for its first blowout win since routing Bucknell earlier this month. SU’s final nonconference game of the decade is nothing more than a tuneup for ACC play when hopefully these predictions get more challenging. Michael McCleary (8-4)Niagara FallsSyracuse 78, Niagara 64AdvertisementThis is placeholder textThere hasn’t been much variety in the predictions we’ve each had over the three-game stretch before the conference schedule opens up for good. I probably predicted Syracuse to score within four points of 78 every game. But so far, Syracuse has followed a pretty solid pattern. Against a team that it is clearly more talented than, the Orange might start slow or slow down as the game progresses. If the Orange are on the mark all game, they could blow out Niagara. But that hasn’t happened in a few contests, so this prediction stays close — by the standards of a Syracuse team who hasn’t finished a game within a 10-point margin in either outcome all year, at least. Once again, SU should win, but only because of loss would be very bad for the already struggling squad.Josh Schafer (9-3)Glens Falls over everythingSyracuse 77 Niagara 61 This is a game Syracuse wins on skill alone unless something gets whacky. And that’s why it’s called an upset. On paper, it’s Syracuse’s game to lose by a mile. The Orange are better on both sides of the ball and have scorers that can take the game over if it gets too close. While the nonconference play started questionable for Syracuse, things have changed over the last few easier games around the holidays and this game should be no different. Syracuse may continue to show mistakes though, and that’s what will make these guessing games more fun come the new year.  Commentslast_img

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