Once positioned to be a possible No. 1 seed in this jumbled, volatile college basketball season, the Syracuse Orange appear to be on their way to a middling fifth or sixth seed in this year's NCAA Tournament barring a huge run at the Big East Conference tourney this week.
Ranked as one of the best teams in the nation in late January following a pair of tightly contested back-to-back wins over then-No. 1 Louisville and Cincinnati, Syracuse has struggled in recent weeks amidst a tough conference schedule. With just five wins in their past 12 games, the Orange no longer appear to be a major contender for the national title.
In the latest bracketology update from CBS Sports' Jerry Palm, Syracuse is projected to be a No. 5 seed in the West region with a first round match-up against Bucknell. The Iona Gaels, MAAC champions, are projected to get in as the 15th seed in the Midwest.
ESPN's Joe Lunardi also sees Syracuse as a fifth seed in the West region. However, he projects the Orange to take on the winner of a play-in game between Boise State and Virginia for the No. 12 seed. Lunardi also sees Iona as the No. 15 seed in the Midwest.
SB Nation's Chris Dobbertean doesn't give the Orange as much credit, projecting the team as the No. 6 seed in the Midwest. He sees Syracuse playing the winner of a play-in game between Boise State and Tennessee. He sees Iona as a 15th seed, albeit in the East region.