Friday, December 10, 2010

Syracuse to Host "Rival" Colgate Saturday

Many of us two-sport Syracuse Orangemen fans will remember meeting Colgate on the gridiron September 25th in the Carrier Dome. Let's be honest, we should all be at a minimum two-sport Orangemen fans! For those of you who missed it, Syracuse and Colgate have a long history of playing each other in football. A very long history. How about on the hardwood?

Syracuse is 117-45 against the Colgate Raiders All-Time. The first game was played in the 1901-02 season according to The Post Standard, and Syracuse has won 44 straight games against Colgate. In the "perfect season" of 1913/1914 Syracuse beat Colgate 29-28 in double overtime. Syracuse held Colgate to 5 first half points, however Colgate would score 21 in the 2nd half to force overtime.

In the first overtime, neither team scored. In the 2nd overtime, Syracuse managed 3 points while Colgate scored only 2. As the final horn rang out, Colgate appeared to have won the game with a buzzer beater, but the referee waved off the basket saying time had expired. Lewis Castle, Syracuse All-American, finished with 15 points on that day.

Then in 1927 Syracuse traveled to Hamilton, NY to take on Colgate, their biggest rival at the time. Colgate was unveiling a brand new gym, Huntington Gymnasium, however it would not be a happy affair for the home town fans. Syracuse "destroyed" Colgate 33-13 and ended Colgate's 10-game winning streak in the process.

In a clear sign of the times, the 1947 match up saw Syracuse traveling to play a Colgate team that would feature two future New York Knicks: Ernie Vandeweghe and Carl Braun. Syracuse won the game 66-65. Billy Gabor scored 23 points to lead the Orangemen. An interesting note about the 1947 Syracuse Orangemen, a fire destroyed Archbold Gym, and Syracuse had to finish their season without a home court to play on or practice in. The team went 9-4 following the fire, and had a final record of 19-5.

Syracuse and Colgate have played every season since 1993. Last year, Syracuse beat the Raiders 92-58. Unfortunately for Colgate, it's not 1947 anymore, and their basketball program has seriously fallen on hard times. The Raiders are 0-7 this season coming into the Carrier Dome, and are coming off a 68-57 loss to the St. Francis Terriers. They are averaging just 61 points per game and shoot 40.2% from the floor.

Yaw Gyawu (6'5" 219 pounds) is the team leading scorer, averaging 13.7 points 5.3 rebounds and 1 assist per game. He is shooting 45.5% from the floor this season. On November 19th of this year, Gyawu scored 9 points and grabbed six rebounds against #1 Duke on the road. Mike Venezia (6'1" 188 pounds) is averaging 9.2 points per game, however did not play against St. Francis on Tuesday. Nick Pascale (6'10" 256 pounds) and Josh Brandenburg (6'11" 263 pounds) are the big men for the Raiders, with Pascale averaging 17 minutes 5.1 points and 5.1 rebounds per game. Brandenburg averages 15.7 minutes per game with 4.4 points and 2.6 rebonds per game.

Syracuse (9-0) will look to score early and often on the Raiders, and should have no problem dismantling Colgate, who hails from the Patriot League. Expect the starters to be resting comfortably on the bench by the middle of the second half, and we will probably see some minutes off the bench for Mookie Jones and James Southerland.

Tip-off is Saturday Night at 7:00PM from the Carrier Dome, and the game will be televised live on The Big East Network (SNY). Check in with The Cuse Connection for complete recap and analysis after the game.

photo (Billy Gabor) and game information courtesy of the Syracuse Basketball Vault Book.

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