Saturday, December 22, 2007

Syracuse 2007-08 Milestones

The 2006-2007 season was a fun one to follow from a milestone perspective as it was a veteran team with three senior starters, and opportunities for Syracuse milestones. This season does not have any senior starters, and with four new starters in the line up, career milestones would be very unlikely this year. However, there are several excellent opportunities for Freshman marks to be challenged.

The top 10 scoring freshman for Syracuse are:
Carmelo Anthony 778 pts
Lawrence Moten 583 pts
Billy Owens 494 pts
Gerry McNamara 467 pts
Pearl Washington 460 pts
Derrick Coleman 453 pts
Eric Devendorf 428 pts
Dale Shackleford 331 pts
Roosevelt Bouie 326 pts
John Wallace 321 pts

After the first 11 games for 2007-08, freshman Donte’ Greene has 215 points. Assuming Syracuse will play 35 games, Greene will finish the year with 684 points, 2nd all time. He would need to score at 23.5 ppg clip to break Melo’s freshman record. He would have a better shot at the freshman record if Syracuse played a few extra post season games (say 38) and he increased his points per game to 20.5.

Classmate Jonny Flynn has 157 points; at his current pace he will have 500 by seasons end, good for 4th all time. It’s possible with the shifting of the lineup due to Eric Devendorf’s injury that Scoop Jardine or Rick Jackson could increase their playing time significantly, thus impacting their season statistics dramatically.

Paul Harris had 302 points his freshman year. Lawrence Moten holds the standard after a sophomore season with 1,101 points. Harris has scored 137 points so far this season; he would need to score at a 27.5 ppg clip to set that record, so Moten seems secure there.

Twelve freshman have scored in double figures for Syracuse in the past:
Carmelo Anthony 22.2 ppg
Lawrence Moten 18.2 ppg
Pearl Washington 14.4 ppg
Gerry McNamara 13.3 ppg
Billy Owens 13.0 ppg
Eric Devendorf 12.2 ppg
Billy Gabor 12.1 ppg
Derrick Coleman 11.9 ppg
Dale Shackleford 11.4 ppg
John Wallace 11.1 ppg
Roosevelt Bouie 10.9 ppg
Erich Santifer 10.7 ppg

Two are on pace to do that this season with Greene at 19.5 ppg, and Flynn at 14.3 ppg, which would be the 2nd and 4th best freshman efforts ever, respectively. Greene would need to increase his pace to 23.4 ppg for the remaining 24 games to break Melo’s record; a feat the high scoring Greene is capable of doing.

The top 10 freshman assists are:
Pearl Washington 199
Jason Hart 184
Michael Edwards 168
Adrian Autry 164
Gerry McNamara 155
Billy Owens 119
Eric Devendorf 82
Ross Kindel 79
Carmelo Anthony 77
Greg Monroe 71

Jonny Flynn has 69 assists so far (just outside the top 10). He’s on pace to finish with 220 assists, which would break Pearl’s freshman record. Jardine and Greene both have a shot at cracking the top 10. The freshman record for assists per game is 6.2 by the Pearl; Flynn is currently on a pace of 6.3 per game.

The top 10 freshman rebounds are:
Carmelo Anthony 349
Derrick Coleman 333
Billy Owens 263
Dale Shackleford 256
Paul Harris 248
Roosevelt Bouie 242
John Wallace 221
Rony Seikaly 198
Louis Orr 194
Lawrence Moten 192

Greene currently leads the way with 90, and is on pace for 286, 3rd all time. Paul Harris had 248 rebounds after his freshman season; by the end of his sophomore season Derrick Coleman had 717 rebounds. So Harris would need 469 rebounds this season to catch DC. Right now Harris has 105 rebounds; he would need 364 more, at a 10.4 rpg pace. It is possible for Harris to catch Coleman, though the possibility of him seeing more backcourt action could hurt his numbers. The freshman record for rebounds per game is 10.0 by Anthony. Greene leads the way at 8.2 rpg, so that seems safe.

The freshman record for blocked shots is 91 by Roosevelt Bouie. Greene is currently on pace for 83 blocks.

The freshman record for free throws made is 168 by Anthony. Flynn is on pace for 118.
The freshman record for three point baskets made is 85 by Gerry McNamara. Greene is on pace for 95, which would set the record.

The freshman record for three point field goal percentage (minimum 50 attempts) is 37.6% (50-133) by Devendorf. Flynn is shooting a blistering 43.2% (16-37) and Greene at 39.0% (30-77) this season.

The freshman record for free throw percentage is 90.9% by Gerry McNamara (minimum 50 attempts). That record seems safe, with Flynn tops this season at 80.4%.

The freshman record for field goal percentage (minimum 100 attempts) is 56.5% by Louis Orr. Rick Jackson is on pace to shatter that at 67.6% (25-37). Note that technically, Andre Hawkins could be considered to hold the freshman field goal percentage. While he failed to meet the minimum number of attempts (60-96), if you gave him four misses, he still would have made 60% for the top mark.

Eric Devendorf started his junior season with 945 points, 227 assists, 180 rebounds, and 104 three point field goals. The Pearl had 637 assists after his junior season, and Coleman had 1,139 rebounds at that point, and McNamara 297 three point field goals; Devo was not going to threaten any of those records. Billy Owens had 1,840 points, and Devo had little chance of catching him; he would’ve had to have scored at about 25.5 ppg for the season.

As it was, Devo did reach a personal milestone by notching his 1,000th career point, before injuring his knee, becoming the 49th Orangeman to do it. With the knee injury, Devo is now stuck at 1,115 points, putting him at #43 on the all-time list, just behind Jimmy Williams with 1,119.

Ironically, the knee injury, which will definitely cast some doubt on Devendorf’s pro future, may also put him into a better position to set the Syracuse all-time scoring record. Lawrence Moten holds that distinction with 2,334 points. Prior to this season, Devo was 1,389 points short; with an estimated 70 collegiate games left, he would have had to have averaged 19.8 ppg his last two seasons. That’s not an impossible number, though it is a tough feat; there have been only 20 times an Orangeman has done that in a given season. Further making it difficult was Coach Jim Boeheim indicating that he thought Devo was going to leave early for the NBA after his junior season.

However, Devo had played 10 games this season, and scored 170 points. If he is granted a medical redshirt, he will pick up two more seasons of eligibility, thus making those 170 points ‘bonus points’. Plus with the knee injury, and the time to recuperate, he will likely need to play two years of college basketball to convince the NBA he is completely healthy. So Devo will enter his junior season (of eligibility) next year with 1,115 points (which is 14 more than Moten had entering his junior year). Devo would need 1,219 points with an estimated 70 collegiate games left. He would then need to average 17.4 ppg; he was averaging 17.0 this season, so that number is reasonable.

Now there’s a lot of “if’s” involved. He is very likely not to be up to speed come next December, which would definitely hurt his performance. If Flynn stays in college, the backcourt will be very crowded with Flynn, Jardine, Andy Rautins (who will be 5 months ahead on his rehab of his knee) and Devendorf. Devendorf’s style of play involved a lot of driving to the hoop, and that may be hampered by the injury.

There still over 2/3 of this 2007-08 season to be played. But clearly a lot of the freshman records are in a position to fall. That’s what happens when you give talented freshman a lot of playing time.

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