Syracuse Orange vs. South Florida Bulls
The Syracuse Orange and the South Florida Bulls meet in Big East college hoops action on Wednesday at the Carrier Dome. The Orange is -14.5 point favorites over the Bulls with an over/under point total of 123.
The Syracuse Orange have been one of the best teams in the nation all season long and Jim Boeheim’s team appears headed towards a number one seed in the NCAA Tournament. SU is 14-1 in the Big East, 17-0 at home this season, and they can clinch no worse than a tie for first place in the conference with one more win. Kris Joseph is averaging 14 points and 4.8 rebounds, Dion Waiters is averaging 12 points, Brandon Triche is averaging 9.4 points, and C.J. Fair is averaging 9.2 points and 5.5 rebounds. As a team Syracuse is averaging 76.8 points, 16.4 assists, and they are shooting 47.6 percent while defensively they are allowing 60.8 points and their opponents are shooting 38.5 percent. While it isn’t March yet Syracuse looks to be ready for the madness.
The South Florida Bulls look to have built their team specifically for Big East play as Stan Heath’s team didn’t appear to be much before conference play started but they have been a force in conference play. USF is 10-4 in the Big East, 4-7 on the road this season, and tied for fourth place in the conference. Augustus Gilchrist is averaging 10.5 points and 4.8 rebounds, Victor Rudd is averaging 9.1 points and 4.3 rebounds, and Toarlyn Fitzpatrick is averaging 8.2 points and 6.5 rebounds. As a team South Florida is averaging 61.1 points and they are shooting 44.3 percent while defensively they are allowing 58.2 points and they are shooting 39.8 percent. South Florida has been impressive as they are riding a four game winning streak and have won eight of their last 10 but they or 0-4 against teams ranked in the top 25.
Syracuse is 10-3 against the spread following a game which they didn’t cover, 2-5 against the spread against a team with a winning record, and 2-6 against the spread following a win. South Florida is 4-0 against the spread in their last four games overall, 5-1 against the spread following a cover, and 5-2 against the spread following a win. The home team has covered in four of the last five meetings of these two.
With the way South Florida has been playing this would appear to be a gift getting the boatload of points but it’s just a free play as this is a big step up in competition and the Orange have been relentless at home making this pick a lean at best.
South Florida Bulls +14.5 Syracuse Orange