Have your opinion on whether or not Michael Carter-Williams should have been the No. 11 pick in the 2013 NBA Draft. Right now, that opinion means nothing.
What really matters is another Syracuse Orange basketball player was drafted in the top 12 of the NBA Draft, as the Philadelphia 76ers selected Carter-Williams, the sophomore guard that helped lead SU to its fifth Final Four appearance, its first in 10 years.
"They're getting a kid that brings a positive attitude," MCW said in his post-selection ESPN interview. "I am just happy. I am going to go against everyone I've looked up to. This is something I've always wanted."
(Interestingly, MCW is the 14th Syracuse player to be drafted by the former Syracuse Nationals/Sixers franchise. Via Syracuse.com's Chris Carlson.)
This marks the fourth time in five years... Let me say that again... the FOURTH TIME IN FIVE YEARS a former Syracuse player was picked in the top 12 of the NBA Draft: Last year, Dion Waiters was selected No. 4 by the Cleveland Cavilers; In 2010, Wes Johnson was picked No. 4 by the Minnesota Timberwolves; In 2009, Jonny Flynn went No. 6 to the T-Wolves.
After basically sitting a season as a freshman, despite being a McDonald's All-American, Carter-Williams stepped into a starter's role and did nothing but lead a team to the Final Four. Sure, there was some ups and downs, which made you pull your hair out, during his sophomore campaign, but there's no debating he was THE player that led the Orange to Atlanta; and professional basketball should have been his next destination.
As a sophomore, MCW averaged 11.9 points, 7.3 assists and 2.8 steals per game. He is 6-foot, 6-inches tall, which intrigues a lot of NBA general managers and coaches, plus, throw in his ability to lead a squad led by veterans, and it equals a, hopefully, long NBA career for the former Orange.
Look, a lot can be said about MCW's legacy at SU -- and let me be clear, his NCAA Tournament performance gives him a SU legacy -- the fact is, this young floor general from Massachusetts is what Syracuse is looking for -- these "one-and-done" players do help compete for National Championships. That's what MCW did.
I will be the first to say, good luck MCW. I'll be rooting for you.