Providence 74

(11-3, 0-1 Big East)

(5) Syracuse 81

(14-0, 1-0 Big East)

Coverage: ESPNU/WatchESPN

9:00 PM ET, December 28, 2010

Carrier Dome, Syracuse, New York

1 2 T
PROV 32 4274
#5SYR 42 3981

Top Performers

Providence: M. Brooks 27 Pts, 6 Reb

Syracuse: K. Joseph 27 Pts, 5 Reb, 4 Ast, 1 Stl

Providence-Syracuse Preview


Syracuse has a chance to get off to a quick start in Big East play, although coach Jim Boeheim is warning his club that conference foes outside the top 10 will also be dangerous.

The fifth-ranked Orange try to improve to 14-0 for the first time in 11 seasons Tuesday night when they host Providence in their Big East opener.

Syracuse, 13-0 for the second straight season, can open with 14 wins for the first time since the 1999-2000 team began 19-0. The Orange have won their last four Big East openers, and they swept two meetings from Providence (11-2) last season by an average of 15.5 points.

The Big East comprises half of the top 10, but the Orange do not face any of those other four teams until a Jan. 17 trip to No. 6 Pittsburgh. Boeheim is doing his part to make sure his team remains focused on Syracuse's five conference games before that.

"Just looking ahead, Providence is 11-2, Notre Dame is a top-20 team and Cincinnati is still undefeated," he said. "Looking around the league, everyone is playing great. It is as good as our league has ever been at this stage of the year."

The Orange certainly are among those teams playing great, shooting 57.7 percent over the last four games after faring better than 50 percent once in their first nine.

Kris Joseph scored 25 points and Scoop Jardine 21 as Syracuse shot a season-high 63.6 percent in Wednesday's 93-65 win over Drexel. The Orange had 17 assists to nine turnovers and have 91 and 38, respectively, over the last four games.

"I think we have matured so much," forward Rick Jackson said. "We have a lot of young guys that are working hard. They spend a lot of time in the gym getting shots up and I am really proud of these guys."

Jackson had 15 points and 12 boards for his Big East-leading ninth double-double. He's among the nation's leaders with a conference-best 11.8 rebounding average.

The senior forward had one of his best games in a 99-85 victory at Providence on Feb. 23 with a career-high 28 points on 13-of-17 shooting along with nine rebounds.

Friars senior forward Marshon Brooks averaged 18.5 points on 53.1 percent shooting in last season's two losses to Syracuse. Brooks is second in the Big East with a 23.1 scoring average.

He recorded his sixth double-double with 25 points and 12 rebounds in last Tuesday's 84-76 win over Sacred Heart.

It was Providence's final non-conference game after going 8-4 outside the Big East in last season's 12-19 campaign. This is the Friars' best start since Rick Barnes guided them to a 13-0 mark in 1988-89.

"I think any coach in the country -- I don't care if you're Duke -- I think you're going to take 11 (wins)," coach Keno Davis said. "You put 11 wins on the table in the non-conference, that's a big number."

Providence has attempted the second-most 3-pointers in the league with 267, but is shooting 31.5 percent for the fourth-worst Big East mark. Syracuse is limiting opponents to 28.6 percent on 3-pointers.


School Info

Conference Big East ACC
Nickname Friars Orange
Type Private Private

2010-11 Season

» Dec 28, 2010 @SYR 81, PROV 74Recap