Syracuse basketball got back into the win column over the weekend, and now the Orange is set to welcome Atlantic Coast Conference foe North Carolina to the JMA Wireless Dome on Tuesday night.
The ‘Cuse put together a solid performance in defeating Georgia Tech in Atlanta, 80-63, this past Saturday afternoon. The Orange won the battle of the boards, limited its turnovers and shot well from the field and from beyond the arc.
Leading the charge versus the Yellow Jackets were senior shooting guard Joe Girard III (28 points, seven assists, five rebounds), freshman forward Maliq Brown (18 points, four rebounds, four steals), senior center Jesse Edwards (14 points, seven boards, three blocks), and freshman point guard Judah Mintz (13 points, six assists and two steals).
While Georgia Tech isn’t having a good 2022-23 season to date, any win in ACC play on the road is a positive for the Orange’s resume, and now the ‘Cuse (13-7, 6-3) has three road victories in league competition, at the Yellow Jackets, Louisville and Notre Dame.
Syracuse basketball has a pivotal home clash with the Tar Heels (14-6, 6-3) coming up. Both the Orange and UNC are bunched together with a group of ACC squads in a tie for third place at present in the conference standings, at 6-3 and behind No. 1 Clemson and No. 2 Virginia.
After beating N.C. State this past Saturday in Chapel Hill, N.C., by 11 points, the Tar Heels have captured three in a row. Syracuse basketball, meanwhile, is 10-3 over its last 13 games.
Syracuse basketball vs. North Carolina odds
When I published this column, actionnetwork.com had the Orange as a 3.5-point betting underdog in its encounter on the Hill with the Tar Heels, and the over/under was set at 150.5 points.
Syracuse basketball vs. North Carolina prediction
In their all-time series together, the ‘Cuse is just 6-15 versus the Tar Heels. Most recently, Syracuse basketball hung tough with UNC on the road last February, but the Orange ended up losing in overtime by nine points.
North Carolina advanced to the title game of the 2022 NCAA Tournament, where it fell to Kansas. Ahead of the 2022-23 stanza, the Tar Heels were the preseason No. 1 team in the AP top-25 poll, but UNC has been up and down throughout the current campaign.
The majority of North Carolina’s setbacks so far in 2022-23 have been to quality foes, including Iowa State, Alabama, Indiana, Pittsburgh and Virginia. Among UNC’s wins, the Tar Heels have defeated Ohio State, Michigan, Charleston and Wake Forest.
North Carolina scores nearly 80 points per game and, as usual, excels on the glass. The Tar Heels do not shoot well from beyond the arc, hitting on just 31.6 percent, and they do most of their damage in the paint.
With an NCAA NET ranking of No. 32 when I wrote this column, UNC is right around the cutline of a quadrant-one opportunity for Syracuse basketball. The Orange needs to start piling up quad-one victories for its resume to have any shot of entering the conversation for the 2023 Big Dance.
This is going to prove a tough, tough game for the ‘Cuse, but I think Syracuse basketball is going to prevail over North Carolina, albeit by an extremely small margin.
Injuries, how to watch, live stream, next game
On the injury front, freshman big man Peter Carey is out for the rest of the 2022-23 season, Syracuse basketball head coach Jim Boeheim has said. The 6-foot-11 Carey, a power forward/center, recently had a surgical procedure done on his right knee and is expected to take a medical redshirt this year, Boeheim has said.
We’ll certainly continue to monitor the injury front for the ‘Cuse in the present term.
The Orange and North Carolina will tip-off starting at 9 pm on Tuesday, Jan. 24, on the Hill. ESPN will televise this ACC clash.
For Syracuse basketball and Tar Heels fans who want to stream this game, you can check it out on fuboTV.
After the ‘Cuse hosts UNC, Syracuse basketball will head to Blacksburg, Va., for a road date with Virginia Tech on Saturday, Jan. 28, beginning at 7 pm from the Cassell Coliseum. The ACC Network will provide television coverage.
Game odds refresh periodically and are subject to change.