Syracuse Orange fans were holding out hope that sophomore Jerami Grant would return for another year to anchor the 2014-2015 lineup. Instead, he's joining Tyler Ennis in the pros. Fair enough (C.J. Fair enough?). But the question now looms...what does the '14-'15 starting lineup look like?
Just thinking out loud, it's probably easier to figure out than you might think.
Trevor Cooney is starting. That's pretty much a given. The question is, will Michael Gibnije get the nod based on seniority or Kaleb Joseph based on pure point guard status?
We know Boeheim doesn't really care about seniority so I'm not gonna worry about that. I do think that Boeheim puts a lot of thought into who his Sixth Starter is and all signs seem to point to Gbinije as that person. He's versatile and he should progress as a playmaker. I'm putting money down he's the Dion Waiters Memorial Sixth Starter.
So that means Kaleb Joseph and Trevor Cooney are your guards.
Big men? Also easy. Assuming everything works out on the injury recovery front, DaJuan Coleman is your center and Rakeem Christmas is your power forward. Cool? Well, I suppose it all depends on whether or not Coleman is back, which may be asking too much. Some people are going as far as to suggest Coleman might not even play next season, which....oy ge valt. But we'll err on the side of good vibes for now.
That leaves the small forward role. The role Jerami Grant would have had. Instead, it's going to be a battle between B.J. Johnson and Tyler Roberson for the spot. Roberson actually has a start under his belt already, though I don't think that gives him any long-term leg up. Still, I'll give him the edge based on the fact that Boeheim trusted him slightly more as a freshman.
Of course, don't sleep on Chris McCullough as well. He's lurking, for sure.
So there you go. Your starting lineup, as far as I can tell, will be...
PG: Kaleb Joseph
SG: Trevor Cooney
SF: Tyler Roberson
PF: Rakeem Christmas
C: DaJuan Coleman
Bench: Michael Gbinije
Bench: B.J. Johnson
Bench: Buss Patterson
Bench: Chino Obokoh
Bench: Chris McCullough
Whatcha think? Can Syracuse maintain as a top ten program with that? Are the No. 20-25 predictions right? Are we in for a rebuilding year?