Syracuse reacts to getting No. 2 seed in NCAA tournament despite holding nation’s top rank

first_imgBobby Wardwell called it a slap in the face. Tim Barber tweeted that his team was “shafted.” Derek DeJoe tweeted his surprised reaction that the decision came down to the NCAA’s money.As Syracuse gathered together to watch the NCAA tournament selection show on Sunday night, senior Kevin Rice said there was an immediate “whatever” when No. 1 Syracuse (12-2, 2-2 Atlantic Coast) was announced as the second seed in the NCAA tournament behind No. 2 Note Dame.Syracuse head coach John Desko alluded his team may have the statistical edge against the Fighting Irish, but ultimately a 13-12 double-overtime loss in South Bend, Indiana on March 28 tipped the scale in favor of UND.“I feel like every year I watch the seedings it’s always a surprise,” Desko said.Wardwell stepped back from his “slap in the face” comment, but added that if he were a voting member of the committee he would’ve voted SU as the top seed.AdvertisementThis is placeholder textAs the No. 2 seed, SU will face the winner Wednesday’s play-in game between Bryant (8-9, 4-2 Northeast) and Marist (13-3, 6-0 Metro Atlantic) on Sunday at 7:30 p.m. in the Carrier Dome.It was Bryant last season that dispatched the Orange in a 10-9 first-round upset win for the Bulldogs in the Carrier Dome. While Syracuse can’t spend the beginning of its week preparing for one specific opponent, SU’s veterans seem to have a consensus on which team they desire to play.“We obviously wanted the one seed but I think if you ask anyone who was on the team last year,” Rice said, “they want another shot at Bryant.”“Everyone wants a second chance at that game,” Wardwell, a senior goalkeeper, added.On the cusp of the final NCAA tournament run for a majority of SU’s key contributors, Syracuse had former player and current Navy SEAL Lt. Commander Rorke Denver deliver a motivational speech on Monday.Rice said Rorke’s message centered around passion and commitment, in addition to the sacrifice that each player will have to make for one another during the four-week run to an NCAA championship.The sentiment resonated with Rice and his fellow seniors with the start of the NCAA tournament looming at the end of the week.“It seems like yesterday I was a sophomore and we were making the run to the final four,” Rice said. “You just don’t get that many opportunities at winning at championship.“You have to take every one with as much passion and commitment as you can.” Comments Published on May 4, 2015 at 6:38 pm Contact Connor: [email protected] | @connorgrossman Facebook Twitter Google+last_img read more