The Carrier Dome puzzled Quincy Guerrier. The court seemed vast. The 3-point line appeared farther from the rim than the Melo Center’s dimensions. The dome rims seemed stiff and unforgiving.
But for two days this week, Guerrier and his fellow Syracuse basketball teammates will practice in the big building in advance of the Orange men’s season-opener against No. 11 Virginia. That game will tip at 9 p.m. Wednesday and be broadcast on the ACC Network.
“It really helps me,” Guerrier said after Monday’s practice. “I remember my first practice in the dome, my shot was short. I was trying to figure it out – why my shot was short. But now I feel like I’m comfortable in the dome. It really helped me to get ready for the dome on Wednesday.”
Syracuse usually practices in the dome the day before home games and holds its other practices in the Melo Center, which has more baskets (four at Melo compared to two in the dome) and better overall facilities. The university these days prefers to keep people out of the dome as much as possible as crews work on the replacement roof. Because of high winds on Monday, dome management decided to call crews off the project and notified the basketball office that the facility was available for practice.