|1990-1991 Syracuse Orangemen|
|Overall||26-6||NCAA First Round||Schedule Results|
|Big East||12-4||Big East Champion (Regular Season)||Previous||Next|
Coach: Jim Boeheim
The 1990-1991 season was going to be the first opportunity for Billy Owens to be the main focus at Syracuse after two years of willingly deferring to veterans Derrick Coleman and Stevie Thompson. And Owens did not disappoint anyone. Though the team had a inexperienced backcourt of freshman Adrian Autry and sophomore Michael Edwards, the team was able to rise to #3 in the polls by January, starting out 13-0, and winning the Maui Classic.
Helping Owens was the emergence of Dave Johnson as a big time offensive threat; this after two years of being a defensive specialist. Owens and Johnson combined for 43.2 points per game, as Owens became the first player under Jim Boeheim to average more than 20 points per game in a season. Senior LeRon Elllis was the only other double digit scorer.
The Orangemen finished the regular season at 26-4, ranked #6 in the country. After the tremendous season by Owens and Johnson, expectations were understandably high for a great post season run. And then the unexpected happened.
The Orangemen, who had always been strong contenders in the Big East tournament, lost in the first round of the tournament to Villanova 70-68. They still managed a #2 seed in the NCAA tournament, where disaster struck once again. They did the seemingly impossible, losing to #15 seed Richmond in the first round 73-69, for one of the biggest first round upsets in NCAA history.
The team which had reached such lofty heights during the regular season, winning so many games with relative ease, had come to a screetching halt in two games.
©RLYoung 2005, 2006