Syracuse's 2013 NCAA Tournament seeding really depends on the status of sixth man, James Southerland. Southerland,,a 6'8" forward with perimeter skills, has missed the last 5 games with academic issues and the Orange have suffered, going just 3-2 without him, compared to 15-1 with him. Recent back-to-back losses to Villanova and Pittsburgh have bounced the Orange from potential Big East favorite to likely runner-up.
If Southerland returns after just one more game as rumored, Syracuse has the potential to gather themselves and get a boost. Southerland's absence is especially hurtful considering starting center DaJuan Coleman is out for 4 weeks due to an injury, leaving Syracuse with no depth in the frontcourt and little scoring punch off the bench.
Even with two losses in the last 5, Syracuse is tied atop the regular-season Big East standings, with four more just a half-game back. If there is any slip-up from 'Cuse, with or without Southerland, down the final run of Big East play, Syracuse is looking at more a 2-seed, with potential for a 3, rather than a top seed in the 2013 NCAA Tournament.