NO. 12 LOUISVILLE CARDINALS (20-5, 8-4) AT SYRACUSE ORANGE (16-9, 7-5)
Game Time: 7:01 p.m.
Location: Carrier Dome: Syracuse, N.Y.
Announcers: Bob Wischusen (play-by-play) and Sean Farnham (analyst)
Officials: Tim Clougherty, Michael Stephens, and Brian O'Connell
Favorite: Louisville by 3
All-Time Series: Louisville leads 15-7
Last Meeting: Louisville won 78-61 in the 2013 Big East Tournament championship game at Madison Square Garden
Probable Starting Lineups:
The Orange (16-9, 7-5 ACC) have split their last four games, losing their most recent outing against Duke 80-72 at home on Feb. 14 despite a career-high 27 points from junior forward Michael Gbinije (10-of-14 field goals, 5-of-8 three pointers), who led four Orange players in double figures. Earlier this month, Syracuse announced a self-imposed postseason ban for the 2014-15 season, which will keep the Orange from playing in the ACC Tournament and any other postseason tournament the team might have qualified for.
Center Rakeem Christmas leads Jim Boeheim's team and is second in the ACC in scoring (17.7 ppg, 23 double figure scoring games this season). Gbinije leads the ACC in three point field goal percentage for league games only (.509, 29-of-57). Ranked 18th nationally in steals (8.4), Syracuse enters tonight's game at No. 64 in the Ken Pomery rankings.
--Louisville is 44-12 in the month of February over the last 8 seasons.
--Syracuse has clinched its 44th consecutive winning season, the top streak in Division I.
--Terry Rozier has averaged 19.7 points and 6.0 rebounds over the last seven games, scoring over 20 points in five. He has averaged 18.5 points overall and 19.1 in ACC games, both which are second in the league. He is third in the ACC in steals.
--Syracuse's Rakeem Christmas has scored in double digits in 23-of-25 games. He leads the ACC in blocked shot average (2.75, ACC games only).
--Louisville's 116 victories over the last four years are the most wins in the nation in that stretch. Louisville is the only school in the nation with three straight 30 win seasons, including a school-record 35 victories amassed by Louisville's 2012-13 NCAA Championship team (30 in 2011- 12, 31 in 2013-14).
--In its six ACC road games this season, Louisville has shot a collective 53.2 percent from the field (158-of-311), while connecting on 37 percent of its field goals in six home games. The Cardinals have shot above 47 percent from the field on 12 occasions this season, including eight times in the last 13 games.
--Terry Rozier has averaged 21.7 points in Louisville's six conference road games.
--Wayne Blackshear needs 97 points to become Louisville's 67th all-time 1,000-point scorer.
--Louisville has won 15 games in a row when playing without a usual starter.
--U of L is 159-9 over the last 14 seasons under Coach Rick Pitino when scoring 80 or more points (20-1 last season, 11-1 in 2012-13).
Ken Pomeroy Prediction: Louisville 66, Syracuse 64