2008–09 Syracuse Orange men's basketball team

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2008–09 Syracuse Orange men's basketball
SyracuseOrange.svg
NCAA, #3, South Region, Sweet Sixteen
Conference Big East Conference (1979–2013)
Ranking
Coaches No. 12
AP No. 13
2008–09 record 28–10 (11–7 Big East)
Head coach Jim Boeheim
Assistant coach Bernie Fine
Assistant coach Mike Hopkins
Assistant coach Rob Murphy
Home arena Carrier Dome
Seasons
2008–09 Big East men's basketball standings
Conf     Overall
Team W   L   PCT     W   L   PCT
#1 Louisville 16 2   .889     31 6   .838
#4 Pittsburgh 15 3   .833     31 5   .861
#5 Connecticut 15 3   .833     31 5   .861
#11 Villanova 13 5   .722     30 8   .789
#23 Marquette 12 6   .667     25 10   .714
#13 Syracuse 11 7   .611     28 10   .737
West Virginia 10 8   .556     23 12   .657
Providence 10 8   .556     19 14   .576
Notre Dame 8 10   .444     21 15   .583
Cincinnati 8 10   .444     18 14   .563
Seton Hall 7 11   .389     17 15   .531
Georgetown 7 11   .389     16 15   .516
St. John's 6 12   .333     16 18   .471
South Florida 4 14   .222     9 22   .290
Rutgers 2 16   .111     11 21   .344
DePaul 0 18   .000     9 24   .273
2009 Big East Tournament winner
As of April 4, 2009[1]; Rankings from AP Poll

The 2008–09 Syracuse Orange men's basketball team represented Syracuse University in the 2008–09 NCAA Division I men's basketball season. The Head Coach is Jim Boeheim, serving for his 33rd year. The team played its home games at the Carrier Dome in Syracuse, New York. Key contributors included senior Kristof Ongenaet, juniors Eric Devendorf, Arinze Onuaku, Andy Rautins and Paul Harris, sophomores Rick Jackson and Jonny Flynn and freshman Kris Joseph.

Preseason[edit]

Roster changes[edit]

Syracuse lost its leading scorer from the previous season, forward Donte Greene, who declared for the 2008 NBA draft and was taken with the 28th overall pick by the Memphis Grizzlies. Greene was then traded to the Houston Rockets and again to the Sacramento Kings.[2]

Syracuse used Greene's scholarship to add Iowa State transfer Wesley Johnson. Johnson averaged 12.4 points per game during his sophomore season with the Cyclones, but must sit out the 2008–09 season.[3] Syracuse will also have lacrosse recruit Kevin Drew, a walk-on.[4]

On the injury front, Syracuse returned juniors Eric Devendorf and Andy Rautins. Both had suffered season ending knee injuries in the 2007–08 season and were granted medical redshirts.[5] However, the Orange also learned before the season started that sophomore Scoop Jardine would be out for entire season after suffering a stress fracture in his left leg.[6]

Recruiting[edit]

Coach Boeheim was able to sign three recruits for the 2008–09 season: Kris Joseph, Mookie Jones and James Southerland.[7][8] However, Southerland did not qualify with his SAT score to attend Syracuse, and returned to Notre Dame Preparatory Academy for an additional season of play.[9]

Name Hometown High school / college Height Weight Commit date
Mookie Jones
Forward
Peekskill (NY) Peekskill High School 6 ft 6 in (1.98 m) 190 lb (86 kg) Oct 26, 2007 
Scout:4/5 stars   Rivals:4/5 stars   247Sports: N/A    ESPN grade: 95
Kris Joseph
Forward
Washington, D.C. Archbishop Carroll HS 6 ft 7 in (2.01 m) 190 lb (86 kg) Oct 16, 2007 
Scout:4/5 stars   Rivals:3/5 stars   247Sports: N/A    ESPN grade: 96
James Southerland
Forward
Bayside, New York Notre Dame Preparatory School 6 ft 7 in (2.01 m) 200 lb (91 kg) Apr 20, 2007 
Scout:3/5 stars   Rivals:3/5 stars   247Sports: N/A    ESPN grade: 87
Overall recruiting rankings:
  • Note: In many cases, Scout, Rivals, 247Sports, and ESPN may conflict in their listings of height and weight.
  • In these cases, the average was taken. ESPN grades are on a 100-point scale.

Sources:

Preseason outlook[edit]

With returning co-Big East Rookie of The Year Jonny Flynn, the Orange was picked to finish eighth in the Big East conference by the Big East coach's poll.[10] Flynn was also a first-team all-Big East selection.[11] Syracuse began the season ranked No. 30 in the Associated Press poll and No. 31 in the ESPN/USA Today poll.[12][13]

Although Syracuse was coming off two-straight NIT-bound seasons, and despite not having won an NCAA tournament game in four seasons, many experts picked Syracuse as a solid choice for the NCAA Tournament.[14][15][16]

Roster[edit]

Players[edit]

Syracuse Basketball
2008–09 Roster
F/C 0 Rick Jackson SO Philadelphia (Neumann-Goretti)
G 1 Andy Rautins JR Jamesville, New York (Jamesville-Dewitt)
G 2 Justin Thomas SR Los Angeles, California (Loyola)
F 3 Mookie Jones FR Peekskill, New York (Peekskill)
F 4 Wesley Johnson JR Corsicana, Texas Corsicana/(Patterson School (NC)/Eldon Acad.)
G 5 Jake Presutti SR Belmont, New York (Genesee Valley)
G 10 Jonny Flynn SO Niagara, New York (Niagara Falls)
G/F 11 Paul Harris JR Niagara Falls, New York (Notre Dame Prep)
F 12 Kristof Ongenaet SR Ghent, Belgium (College Melle/Cuesta C.C.)
C 21 Arinze Onuaku JR Lanham, Maryland (Episcopal)
G 23 Eric Devendorf JR Bay City, Michigan (Oak Hill Academy)
G 24 Brandon Reese FR Davie, Florida (Pinehurst)
G 25 Kevin Drew FR South Salem, New York (John Jay Cross River)
F 32 Kris Joseph FR Washington, D.C. (Archbishop Carroll)
G 33 Scoop Jardine SO Philadelphia (Neumann-Goretti)
C 45 Sean Williams FR Villa Park, California (Notre Dame Prep)

Coaches[edit]

Name Position Year at
Syracuse
Alma Mater (Year)
Jim Boeheim Head coach 33rd Syracuse (1966)
Bernie Fine Associate head coach 33rd Syracuse (1967)
Mike Hopkins Assistant coach 13th Syracuse (1993)
Rob Murphy Assistant coach 5th Central State (1996)

Season[edit]

Season Recap[edit]

Syracuse plays Rutgers at the The RAC in January

Syracuse started the season strong, winning the CBE Classic. In the semifinals on November 24, 2008, the Orange topped No. 17/18 Florida, 89–83. Jonny Flynn and Paul Harris led five SU players in double figures with 18 points each.[17] In the finals on November 25, 2008, Syracuse defeated the defending champions, the No. 22/23 Kansas Jayhawks, 89–81 in overtime, to capture the CBE Classic. Jonny Flynn had 25 points, including a 3-pointer with 6.4 seconds left in regulation to send the game to overtime. Flynn was named MVP of the tournament.[18][19]

But the season would hit a low point on December 15, 2008 when then-No. 11 Syracuse lost to unranked Cleveland State University 72–69 as a result of a 60-foot, buzzer-beating shot by Cleveland State's Cedric Jackson.[20]

Syracuse would add another key non-conference win on December 20, 2008, when then-No. 11 Syracuse won a key away game against national runner-up Memphis as Syracuse's stifling zone held Memphis to just 7-for-33 shooting from 3-point land. Flynn paced the Orange with 24 points and six assists, as Syracuse was able to deal with the loss of Eric Devendorf to a suspension after he was accused of hitting a female student on Nov. 1.[21]

Perhaps the biggest game of the season happened on March 12–13, 2009, when then-No. 18 Syracuse and No. 4 Connecticut played the longest game in Big East history, and second longest in NCAA Division I history, as Syracuse won 127–117 in six overtimes. Flynn set a new Syracuse record by playing 67 minutes.[22]

Syracuse would be named a No. 3 seed for the NCAA Tournament and win games over Stephen F. Austin (59–44) and Arizona State (78–67) to advance to the Sweet 16.[23][24] But the Orange would be halted by Blake Griffin and Oklahoma in an 84–71 loss.[25] The loss would mark the final game for Devendorf, Flynn and Harris, who all left the team following the season for the professional ranks.

Final Conference Standings[edit]

2008–09 Big East Final Standings
Seed Team Conf. Record
(Overall)
Seed Team Conf. Record
(Overall)
1 #5 Louisville 16–2 (25–5) 9 Cincinnati 8–10 (18–13)
2 #2 Pittsburgh 15–3 (28–3) 10 Notre Dame 8–10 (17–13)
3 #3 Connecticut 15–3 (27–3) 11 Seton Hall 7–11 (16–14)
4 #10 Villanova 13–5 (25–6) 12 Georgetown 7–11 (16–13)
5 #21 Marquette 12–6 (23–8) 13 St. John's 6–12 (15–16)
6 #18 Syracuse 11–7 (23–8) 14 South Florida 4–14 (9–21)
7 West Virginia 10–8 (21–10) 15 Rutgers 2–16 (11–20)
8 Providence 10–8 (18–12) 16 DePaul 0–18 (8–23)

Big East tournament[edit]

Syracuse was seeded sixth and received a bye in the first round. They reached the finals of the 2009 tournament, where they were defeated by the first-seeded Louisville Cardinals, 76–66.[26] It was their fourteenth time making the Big East Tournament Finals, the most for any team in the conference.

Prior to making the finals, Syracuse's performance featured a conference record six-overtime quarterfinals game (the second longest game in NCAA history) in which they defeated third-seeded Connecticut 127–117.[27] A day later, in the semifinals, the Orange were forced into overtime again, where they defeated West Virginia 74–69 in a single extra session.[28]

Jonny Flynn was named the tournament's most outstanding player, becoming just the fourth player in Big East Tournament history to win the award as a member of the second-place team.[26]

NCAA tournament[edit]

The Orange were seeded third in the South Region, and played fourteenth-seeded Stephen F. Austin on Friday, March 20 at American Airlines Arena in Miami, Florida.[29] The Orange won, 59–44. They faced sixth-seeded Arizona State in the second round, winning 78–67.[29] Their season ended in the South regional semifinals when they lost 84–71 to Oklahoma.

Schedule[edit]

Date
Time, TV
Rank# Opponent# Result Record Site (Attendance)
City, State
Exhibition
November 3, 2008*
7:00 pm, Time Warner
Cal State Los Angeles W 77–56 
Carrier Dome (10,257)
Syracuse, New York
November 9, 2008*
2:00 pm, Time Warner
Indiana PA W 103–58 
Carrier Dome (8,655)
Syracuse, New York
Regular season
November 16, 2008*
6:30 pm, ESPNU
Le Moyne
CBE Classic First Round
W 85–51  1–0
Carrier Dome (16,755)
Syracuse, New York
November 18, 2008*
6:00 pm, ESPNU
Richmond
CBE Classic Second Round
W 76–71  2–0
Carrier Dome (16,260)
Syracuse, New York
November 21, 2008*
7:00 pm, Time Warner
Oakland W 86–66  3–0
Carrier Dome (18,932)
Syracuse, New York
November 24, 2008*
6:30 pm, ESPN2
No. 17 Florida
CBE Classic Semifinal
W 89–83  4–0
Sprint Center (14,720)
Kansas City, Missouri
November 25, 2008*
9:15 pm, ESPN2
No. 22 Kansas
CBE Classic Final
W 89–81 OT 5–0
Sprint Center (16,988)
Kansas City, Missouri
November 28, 2008*
7:00 pm, Time Warner
Virginia W 73–70  6–0
Carrier Dome (22,096)
Syracuse, New York
December 1, 2008*
7:00 pm, Time Warner
No. 16 Colgate W 86–51  7–0
Carrier Dome (18,422)
Syracuse, New York
December 3, 2008*
7:00 pm, Time Warner
No. 16 Cornell W 88–78  8–0
Carrier Dome (18,859)
Syracuse, New York
December 13, 2008*
12:00 pm, ESPNU
No. 13 Long Beach State W 79–55  9–0
Carrier Dome (17,224)
Syracuse, New York
December 15, 2008*
7:00 pm, Time Warner
No. 11 Cleveland State L 72–69  9–1
Carrier Dome (15,416)
Syracuse, New York
December 17, 2008*
7:00 pm, ESPNU
No. 11 Canisius W 82–60  10–1
Carrier Dome (16,262)
Syracuse, New York
December 20, 2008*
6:00 pm, ESPN
No. 11 No. 23 Memphis W 72–65  11–1
FedExForum (17,091)
Memphis, Tennessee
December 22, 2008*
7:00 pm, Time Warner
No. 17 Coppin State W 82–71  12–1
Carrier Dome (17,214)
Syracuse, New York
December 30, 2008
7:00 pm, Big East Network
No. 13 Seton Hall W 100–76  13–1
(1–0)
Carrier Dome (23,152)
Syracuse, New York
January 2, 2009
8:30 pm, ESPN
No. 13 South Florida W 59–54  14–1
(2–0)
USF Sun Dome (8,350)
Tampa, Florida
January 7, 2009
7:00 pm, Big East Network
No. 11 DePaul W 85–68  15–1
(3–0)
Carrier Dome (17,296)
Syracuse, New York
January 10, 2009
7:30 pm, Big East Network
No. 11 Rutgers W 82–66  16–1
(4–0)
Louis Brown Athletic Center (8,079)
Piscataway, New Jersey
January 14, 2009
7:30 pm, ESPN2
No. 8 No. 13 Georgetown L 88–74  16–2
(4–1)
Verizon Center (19,227)
Washington, D.C.
January 17, 2009
12:00 pm, ESPN
No. 8 No. 12 Notre Dame W 93–74  17–2
(5–1)
Carrier Dome (30,021)
Syracuse, New York
January 19, 2009
7:00 pm, ESPN
No. 8 No. 4 Pittsburgh L 78–60  17–3
(5–2)
Petersen Events Center (12,508)
Pittsburgh
January 25, 2009
12:00 pm, Big East Network
No. 8 No. 9 Louisville L 67–57  17–4
(5–3)
Carrier Dome (25,721)
Syracuse, New York
January 28, 2009
7:00 pm, Big East Network
No. 15 Providence L 100–94  17–5
(5–4)
Dunkin' Donuts Center (10,873)
Providence, Rhode Island
February 4, 2009
7:00 pm, ESPN
No. 20 West Virginia W 74–61  18–5
(6–4)
Carrier Dome (21,069)
Syracuse, New York
February 7, 2009
12:00 pm, ESPN
No. 20 No. 17 Villanova L 102–85  18–6
(6–5)
Wachovia Center (20,390)
Philadelphia
February 11, 2009
7:00 pm, ESPN
No. 23 No. 1 Connecticut
Rivalry
L 63–49  18–7
(6–6)
Harry A. Gampel Pavilion (10,167)
Storrs, Connecticut
February 14, 2009
12:00 pm, ESPN
No. 23 Georgetown W 98–94 OT 19–7
(7–6)
Carrier Dome (31,841)
Syracuse, New York
February 22, 2009
1:00 pm, CBS
No. 24 No. 12 Villanova L 89–86  19–8
(7–7)
Carrier Dome (26,879)
Syracuse, New York
February 24, 2009
7:30 pm, Big East Network
St. John's W 87–58  20–8
(8–7)
Madison Square Garden (11,148)
New York City
March 1, 2009
2:00 pm, Big East Network
Cincinnati W 87–63  21–8
(9–7)
Carrier Dome (25,139)
Syracuse, New York
March 3, 2009
9:00 pm, ESPNU
No. 25 Rutgers W 70–40  22–8
(10–7)
Carrier Dome (21,233)
Syracuse, New York
March 7, 2009
2:00 pm, Big East Network
No. 25 No. 13 Marquette W 86–79 OT 23–8
(11–7)
Bradley Center (19,144)
Milwaukee
Big East Tournament
March 11, 2009
9:30 pm, ESPN
No. 18 vs. Seton Hall
Second Round
W 89–74  24–8
Madison Square Garden (19,375)
New York
March 12, 2009
9:30 pm, ESPN
No. 18 vs. No. 4 Connecticut
Quarterfinals/Rivalry
W 127–117 6OT 25–8
Madison Square Garden (19,375)
New York
March 13, 2009
9:30 pm, ESPN
No. 18 vs. West Virginia
Semifinals
W 74–69 OT 26–8
Madison Square Garden (19,375)
New York
March 14, 2009
9:00 pm, ESPN
No. 18 vs. No. 5 Louisville
Finals
L 76–66  26–9
Madison Square Garden (19,375)
New York
NCAA Tournament
March 20, 2009*
12:15 pm, CBS
No. 3-S vs. No. 14-S Stephen F. Austin
First Round
W 59–44  27–9
American Airlines Arena (10,163)
Miami
March 22, 2009*
12:10 pm, CBS
No. 3-S vs. No. 6-S Arizona State
Second Round
W 78–67  28–9
American Airlines Arena (10,204)
Miami
March 27, 2009*
7:30 pm, CBS
No. 3-S vs. No. 2-S Oklahoma
Regional semifinals
L 84–71  28–10
FedExForum 
Memphis, Tennessee
*Non-conference game. #Rankings from AP poll.  †NCAA Tournament ranks are seeds in the region (E=East, M=Midwest, S=South, W=West). (#) Tournament seedings in parentheses.
All times are in Eastern Standard Time.

Rankings[edit]

Poll Pre Wk 1 Wk 2 Wk 3 Wk 4 Wk 5 Wk 6 Wk 7 Wk 8 Wk 9 Wk 10 Wk 11 Wk 12 Wk 13 Wk 14 Wk 15 Wk 16 Wk 17 Wk 18 Final
AP 30 30 27 16 13 11 17 13 11 8 8 15 20 23 24 28 25 18 13 13
Coaches 31 31 32 20 16 11 14 11 9 8 8 15 20 22 25 29 25 20 15 12

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Big East Conference Standings - 2008-09." ESPN.com. Retrieved 03-23-10.
  2. ^ Greene will enter draft
  3. ^ Syracuse lands Iowa State transfer Johnson
  4. ^ Boys lacrosse: John Jay in state quarterfinals
  5. ^ http://sports.espn.go.com/ncb/columns/story?columnist=oneil_dana&id=3603525
  6. ^ http://www.pressconnects.com/article/20081115/SPORTS/811150308/1003/SPORTS
  7. ^ He Can Play Everywhere
  8. ^ Mookie Jones wants to take the last shot
  9. ^ Update on James Southerland
  10. ^ http://www.democratandchronicle.com/article/20081022/SPORTS09/81022024
  11. ^ http://blog.syracuse.com/orangebasketball/2008/10/big_east_writers_poll_tabs_uco.html
  12. ^ http://sports.espn.go.com/ncb/rankings?pollId=1&seasonYear=2009&weekNumber=1&seasonType=2
  13. ^ http://sports.espn.go.com/ncb/rankings?pollId=2&seasonYear=2009&weekNumber=1&seasonType=2
  14. ^ http://bleacherreport.com/articles/86132-watch-out-for-syracuse-basketball-in-09
  15. ^ http://www.collegesports-fans.com/basketball-previews/2008-2009-previews/syracuse-orange-preview.html
  16. ^ http://blog.syracuse.com/orangebasketball/2008/11/poll_what_kind_of_postseason_w.html
  17. ^ http://www.alligator.org/articles/2008/11/24/sports/basketball/081125_hoops.txt
  18. ^ https://www.google.com/hostednews/ap/article/ALeqM5h83QxDvPUdL7dmv7wa7KFQ_a4LbgD94MEDE00
  19. ^ http://media.www.dailyorange.com/media/storage/paper522/news/2008/11/21/Sports/Mbb-Syracuse.Topples.No.22.Kansas.In.Overtime.To.Take.Cbe.Title-3562251.shtml
  20. ^ https://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20081216/ap_on_sp_co_ga_su/bkc_t25_cleveland_st_syracuse
  21. ^ http://sports.espn.go.com/ncb/recap?gameId=283550235
  22. ^ http://sports.espn.go.com/ncb/recap?gameId=290710041
  23. ^ Thamel, Pete (21 March 2009). "N.C.A.A. Drought Over, Syracuse Moves to Second Round". The New York Times. Retrieved 2010-04-22. 
  24. ^ http://www.syracuse.com/today/index.ssf/2009/03/syracuse_in_the_sweet_16_orang.html
  25. ^ http://sports.espn.go.com/ncb/boxscore?gameId=294000045
  26. ^ a b "Louisville completes conference sweep with Big East tournament crown". New York City: ESPN. Associated Press. 14 March 2009. Archived from the original on March 19, 2009. Retrieved 2009-03-15. 
  27. ^ "Syracuse survives longest game in Big East history with epic win over UConn". New York City: ESPN. Associated Press. 13 March 2009. Archived from the original on March 14, 2009. Retrieved 2009-03-15. 
  28. ^ "Only one overtime is needed as Syracuse advances past West Virginia". New York City: ESPN. Associated Press. 13 March 2009. Archived from the original on March 15, 2009. Retrieved 2009-03-15. 
  29. ^ a b "2009 NCAA Tournament Bracket". ESPN. ESPN. 15 March 2009. Archived from the original on February 22, 2009. Retrieved 2009-03-15.