Eastern Michigan Eagles vs. Syracuse Orange
Tip-off: Monday, December 3, 2012 – 7:00 PM ET
Carrier Dome, Syracuse, NY
The Syracuse Orange managed to remain unbeaten well into last college basketball season, and according to YouWager line movers their favorable upcoming NCAA schedule might help them remain unbeaten once again.
The sixth-ranked Syracuse are looking for their 48th straight regular-season non-conference win when they host the Eastern Michigan Eagles this evening.
The orange won their first 20 games of 2011-12 before a defeat versus the Notre Dame Fighting Irish on Jan. 21 en route to a 34-3 overall record, a No. 1 seed in the NCAA tournament and an appearance in the regional finals.
Syracuse (5-0) got a difficult challenge versus the Arkansas Razorbacks on Sunday but right away stayed amazing with a 91-82 win behind a career-high 35 points from James Southerland.
The senior forward finished 12 of 17 from the field, including a career-best nine 3-pointers on 13 attempts. Southerland’s previous career high was 22 points — Nov. 21 against the Princeton Tigers.
The Orange fought back Arkansas’ full-court pressure with help from point guard Michael Carter-Williams, who handed out nine assists and leads the nation with 9.2 per contest.
It’s not likely for the Orange to face difficulties remaining unbeaten and continuing their streak of regular-season non-conference victories before beginning Big East play against the Rutgers Scarlet Knights on Jan. 2, which will mark its ninth straight home game.
The rest of Syracuse’s non-conference college basketball schedule doesn’t feature a single team from a major conference – the Razorbacks of the SEC is the only one on the entire non-conference slate — with currently 5-0 Temple possibly providing the biggest challenge Dec. 22.
Though the Eagles come with a couple of familiar faces to the Carrier Dome, it’s not likely to be much of a threat to the Orange who haven’t lost in the regular season to a non-Big East foe since falling to Cleveland State on Dec. 15, 2008.
The Orange are averaging 80.2 points, but the Eagles allow 52.7 per contest to rank seventh in the nation.
However, Syracuse held Eastern Michigan to 34.7 percent shooting in an 84-48 win last season as Southerland scored a game high-tying 19 points.
The Eagles have lost their last 10 games against ranked teams by double digits.