Wow what a disaster. Every aspect of that game went wrong. Defense...Offense...Crowd...the relationship between students and players.
I guess I'll start with the obvious, the defense or lack there of. This has already been beat to death by everyone so I'm just going to put the final nail in the coffin. Yes, they don't get on defense, and yes they allow a lot of wide open looks, but something that isn't really getting air time is the defense's inability to create turnovers. A team cannot score if they don't shoot on their possession. Obvious right? Well S.U. isn't getting steals or forcing bad passes. The defense forced turnovers on just 13.6% of UMASS's possessions. To put that into perspective, Syracuse's season rate is just over 17% which is 318th in the country. Syracuse forced 11 turnovers in an 80 possession game which is unacceptable. In a fast paced game turnovers exponentially increase. An 80 possession game should result in 18-20 turnovers for each team.
Now with the offense. Okay they scored 100 points. Their offensive efficiency was 123, best for the year. The problem, they can't score against a 2-3 zone. They had 20 points to start the game in 5.5 minutes against the man to man. UMASS switched to zone and Syracuse scored about 8 over the next 7 minutes or so. The same happened in the second half. UMASS started in man, switched to zone, and UMASS came back.
Third thing that wasn't good. The student section was DEAD during most the game. Not many cheers started down on the floor. Darryl, Otto's Army President and Ryan tried starting stuff all game, but nothing really caught on. I think part of it was every time we scored, UMASS came right back and got a score before we could even start cheering.
Final thing, Eric Devendorf snapped and went off on someone in the front of the student section when he and the rest of the team was criticized. I'm not a hundred percent sure what was said, but Devo had heard enough and guys on the bench needed to physically restrain him. I'm really surprised no one from press covered this because they were right in the middle of it. Devendorf continued yelling towards the crowd as he walked off the court.
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