Over the past ten years or so, Syracuse Orange basketball rosters have been littered with the names of players who for one reason or another developed less-then-stellar reputations. The missteps of guys like Devendorf, Edelin, Williams, Wright, and Rautins* are well-chronicled, and put various-sized nicks in the school's Orange-plated armor that took years to buff out.
Today I'm happy to report that a future arrival seems to be as good of a person as he is a player. His name? DaJuan Coleman.
For those of you who live outside of the Syracuse area or don't follow high school recruiting, DaJuan is a 6'8" senior center for the Jamesville-DeWitt Red Rams, who are 10-2 overall this season and 7-0 in their division. They have won three consecutive New York State Class A championships - coinciding with his first three years of high school - and are gunning for a fourth with Coleman and 6'8" forward (and Wake Forest signee) Tyler Cavanaugh anchoring the middle. Coleman is ESPN's #4 rated center (and # 14 overall) in the high school class of 2012.
I had the opportunity to sit down with DaJuan for a few minutes Wednesday evening after he and his J-D teammates had just wrapped up a spirited two-hour practice. While the girls' varsity warmed up for their practice I asked him his thoughts on SU, his favorite players, his own game, and the team's upcoming grudge match with rival Christian Brothers Academy. Coleman and his coach, Bob McKenney, were very gracious with their time, when I'm sure they would have preferred to be headed home for dinner or doing anything other than hanging out with me.
*Okay, I'm joking about Rautins, but you get my point.