Syracuse basketball vs. Morehead State: 10 things to watch for



By Mike Waters | [email protected] | Posted November 10, 2018 at 07:00 AM

Dennis Nett | [email protected]

The Syracuse Orange men's basketball team will host Morehead State at the Carrier Dome on Saturday as part of the 2K Clbadic benefiting the Wounded Warrior Project.

Syracuse is 1-0 after throttling Eastern Washington 66-34 in the season-opener on Tuesday.

Morehead State enters the Carrier Dome with a 1-1 record following an opening night win over NAIA foe Kentucky Christian and an 80-70 loss at Connecticut on Thursday night.

Syracuse guard Tyus Battle (pictured) struggled in the Orange's opener, scoring just eight points on 3-for-10 shooting. He'll look to get back on track against the Eagles.

Morehead State is 0-2 all-time against Syracuse. The Eagles' last game against Syracuse was a 110-69 loss during the 1987-88 season.

Here are 10 things to watch for in tonight's game:

Syracuse starters

Dennis Nett | [email protected]

Syracuse starters

Syracuse's starting lineup remains in flux as senior point guard Frank Howard remains sidelined with an injured left ankle.

Howard is getting closer to a return. I have been out of a walking boot for over a week.

With Howard out of action, Syracuse's starting five through its two exhibitions and the regular season opener against Eastern Washington has looked like this:

Tyus Battle at the point, Buddy Boeheim at shooting guard, Elijah Hughes at small forward, Oshae Brissett at power forward and Paschal Chukwu at center.

Morehead State starters

AP Photo

Morehead State starters

Morehead State returns several key players off last year's squad, including forward Lamontray Harris and guard A.J. Hicks (No. 0)

Morehead State coach Preston Spradlin have used the same starting lineup in both of the Eagles' games this season.

The Morehead State starting five should look like this: Lamontray Harris (6-7, Sr.), Malek Green (6-7, Soph.), A.J. Hicks (6-0, Sr.), De'Von Cooper (6-4, Soph.) And Jordan Walker (6-0, Jr.).

It's a relatively small line that will have to rely on its speed to combat Syracuse's size.

Can Carey carry the load?

AP Photo

Can Carey carry the load?

Syracuse freshman Jalen Carey made his Orange debut in Tuesday's game against Eastern Washington.

Carey, a 6-foot-3 guard, sprained his ankle in the Orange v. White scrimmage on Oct. 16 and had missed both of Syracuse's exhibition games.

In the win over Eastern Washington, Carey came off the bench and played 18 solid minutes. I scored seven points on 2-for-6 shooting and gathered in six rebounds.

There were some signs of rust and inexperience. He was slow to get the Orange in his halfcourt offense a couple times, but he has electrified the Dome crowd with his speed and aggressiveness.

Now the question is can Carey carry more of a load at the point? The more Carey is able to play the more time Tyus Battle can spend at his natural shooting guard position.

Battle has struggled to score in the two exhibitions and the opener. Getting him back to the 2-spot spot would be beneficial to him and the Orange.

Morehead State's quick turnaround

AP Photo

Morehead State's quick turnaround

Morehead State is getting a taste of those dreaded Saturday-Monday turnarounds.

The Eagles played Connecticut at Gampel Pavilion on Thursday. It was an intense atmosphere for an opening night game because it was the home debut of new UConn coach Dan Hurley.

The game itself was intense, too. Morehead State kept things tight, trailing just 37-33 at halftime and hanging with the Huskies for most of the game before falling 80-70.

Morehead State had to stay on the road and make the trip up to Syracuse. Will the back-to-back road games be an issue for the Eagles?


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