TAMPA, Fla. -- Syracuse overcame a 10-point first-half deficit to beat South Florida 55-44 Sunday in front of 10,024 at a sold-out Sun Dome.
Junior guard Brandon Triche scored 20 points and forward James Southerland added 17 for the seventh-ranked Orange.
For the Orange (14-1, 2-0 Big East), it was its fourth straight victory and 904th of coach Jim Boeheim's career.
USF (9-3, 0-1), playing in its Big East opener, started off strong. The Bulls took a 10-point lead in the first 8 minutes, buoyed by junior forward Victor Rudd. Rudd, who racked up 13 first-half points, had three early dunks and a big block from behind on Syracuse guard Michael Carter-Williams.
But Syracuse bounced back, clamping down defensively with its 2-3 zone to hold the Bulls to just two points in the final 9 minutes. Forward C.J. Fair (10 points), Triche and Southerland led the way, each finishing in double-figures, and Syracuse went into halftime up 30-23.
The matchup included two of the nation's top point guards, a pair of sophomores, in USF's Anthony Collins and Syracuse's Carter-Williams. Collins, in just his second game back after getting hospitalized due to a neck injury, finished with just five points, including a layup to pull the Bulls within three early in the second half.
But the balanced Orange attack kept the Bulls at bay, opening up a lead as big as 12. Syracuse slowed down Rudd, who after a big first half, was held to just two points in the second half for a total of 15.
USF got to within 47-42 with 4:07 left in the game, and had the ball, but Collins had to settle for tossing up a 3-point shot as the clock expired. At the other end, Southerland helped put it away with a 3-pointer from the left corner to extend the lead to eight.
The Orange outrebounded the Bulls 36-26 and forced 15 turnovers.
Notes: Carter-Williams, who entered Sunday leading the nation with 10.1 assists per game, finished with five against USF. ... It was Syracuse's last trip to Tampa as a member of the Big East before heading to the ACC. ... Syracuse is 10-1 all-time against USF. ... USF has won its Big East opener only once in the past eight seasons. ... The Bulls were looking for just their third win over a top-10 team (No. 8 Marquette, 2009; No. 7 Georgetown, 2010). ... It was the Bulls' first home sellout since December 2011 vs. Florida.