After four years, C.J. Fair and Baye Moussa Keita will be playing their final home game Tuesday night against the Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets.
It is senior night, and along with walk-ons Nolan Hart and Russ DeRemer, Fair and Keita will be making their final appearance in the Carrier Dome as players for the Syracuse Orange. With all of the emotion at hand, the Orange will have to put it to the side and focus on bouncing back from their recent struggles, as they have lost three of their last four games.
The Yellow Jackets are the third worst team in the ACC this year with a record of 4-12. They are 13-16 overall, but as Syracuse fans know after the Boston College loss, no ACC team can be overlooked. The Yellow Jackets are led by seniors Daniel Miller and Trae Golden and sophomores Robert Carter Jr. and Marcus Georges-Hunt. The four combine for 69 percent of the teams points. Carter Jr. and Miller combine for 16.2 rebounds per game. The Orange tend to struggle against their opponents’ big men, so look for these two players to be in the middle of the zone and on the offensive glass.
The Orange struggled again on the offensive end against Virginia on Saturday, shooting just 35 percent from the field and went 5-22 from three. The seventh-ranked team in the country will have a good opportunity to break out of this funk against a Georgia Tech defense that allows their opponents to shoot 42.4 percent from the field and 33.8 percent from three. The Yellow Jackets do not give up that many points for a team under .500, as opponents average just 67.3 points per game,so the low scoring Orange might have another low scoring game.
Despite having an average defense, the Yellow Jackets’ offense isn’t too great. They shoot 43.1 percent from the field and 31.5 percent from three, 235th and 273rd in the nation respectively. This is a good sign for the Orange, who allowed Virginia to shoot 50 percent from both the field and from three in their last game.
The Pick: The Orange have been playing everybody close recently, but a very good Virginia team gave the Orange a loss they aren’t quite used to, as they are the first team to beat them by double digits this year. It is senior night and the Orange are looking to get back to playing their best basketball. With all of this on the line, I think the Orange will play some of the best basketball they have played in a while. I don’t expect them to blow the Yellow Jackets out because they don’t do that to teams, but I think they will win 70-55.
When: 7:00 p.m. ET
Where: Carrier Dome, Syracuse, NY
Television: ACC Network/ESPN3