Things can't be going much better for the Orange (15-0, 2-0 Big East), who haven't played since last Saturday when they beat No. 14 Notre Dame, 70-58. A victory Saturday would allow the Orange to remain unbeaten -- as of Saturday, only seven other teams (No. 1 Duke, No. 2 Ohio State, No. 3 Kansas, No. 6 San Diego State, No. 19/18 Central Florida and No. 24/25 Cincinnati ) in the nation have not lost.
Syracuse has met and exceeded all preseason expectations. A lot of this has to do with the play from senior forward Rick Jackson, who has been the squad's consistent presence inside. Currently, Jackson is tied for fourth in the nation in rebound average and has tallied nine double-doubles.
|2010 - Rick Jackson||15||33.5||5.7||10.3||55.8||0.0||0.0||0.0||2.0||3.8||52.6||3.8||7.9||11.7||2.6||1.5||1.1||2.3||1.7||13.5|
As of late, sophomore forward James Southerland has been playing well. Last Saturday, Southerland netted 12 points and had a collegiate-best three steals against the Fighting Irish.
|2010 - James Southerland||12||16.0||2.5||5.7||44.1||1.3||3.4||36.6||0.1||0.2||50.0||0.7||2.3||3.0||0.4||0.3||0.7||0.8||1.6||6.3|
Also adding contributions has been freshmen guard Dion Waiters, who hasn't posted a lot of noticeable stats but has been critical in second-half surges.
Seton Hall (7-8, 1-2) has had a rough start to the 2010-11 season.
The Pirates have lost four of their last five games -- two against ranked Cincinnati Bearcats and Louisville Cardinals -- and lost All-American candidate, Jeremy Hazell, to a broken wrist. Hazell also was shot below his right arm during a robbery attempt on Christmas. Hazell has rejoined the team since the incident.
Currently, senior forward Jeff Robinson is leading the team in points. However, he has been criticized for taking too many outside shots, which have hurt the sputtering Pirates offense.
|2010 - Jeff Robinson||15||30.1||4.7||10.1||46.7||1.1||3.3||32.0||1.7||2.1||78.1||1.7||4.2||5.9||0.5||1.7||0.7||0.5||2.6||12.2|
Look for freshman Fuquan Edwin to try an steal the spotlight from Robinson. Against Louisville, Edwin scored a collegiate-best 18 points.
|2010 - Fuquan Edwin||15||25.7||3.6||8.1||44.3||1.0||2.9||34.9||1.7||2.5||67.6||0.9||3.4||4.3||0.9||0.7||1.5||0.2||2.4||9.9|
Seton Hall's lone Big East victory came against the South Florida Bulls, 64-55, on Dec. 28.
This should be an easy victory for the Orange, who play the St. John's Red Storm, Jan. 12 (Wednesday), and Cincinnati, Jan. 15 (Saturday), next week.
Information for this preview was provided by SUAthletics.com, shupirates.com and SB Nation's South Orange Juice. On Saturday, SB Nation New York will be updating throughout the game. Come and share your thoughts. Need to reach Jared? E-mail: JaredSmith16@gmail.com. Twitter: Jared_E_Smith.