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Syracuse Basketball: Frank Howard Playing With Fractured Thumb

The point guard has been a bit overshadowed by fellow freshman Malachi Richardson and Tyler Lydon, but has come on strong as of late.

Mark Konezny-USA TODAY Sports

One of the best things that came out of when Mike Hopkins was Syracuse's interim head coach was the play of Frank Howard. The freshman did not receive much playing time under Boeheim, but Hopkins gave Howard a chance and he took advantage of it. In the first seven games of the season, when Boeheim was coach, Howard averaged 3.8 minutes of play. Under Hopkins, Howard saw that increase to eight minutes. Since Boeheim's return, Howard has seen his minutes go up to an even 10 minutes per game.

Howard's ability to spell Gbinije at the point and give some of the guards a rest has been very valuable to the Orange. He has tremendous vision and is an outstanding passer. He has clearly passed Kaleb Joseph on the depth chart and appears to be the point guard of the future.

After yesterday's 85-72 win over Florida State, Mike Waters, reported that Howard played with a fractured thumb. He played with a bandage on his left thumb on Thursday against Florida State. Howard said the injury occurred a week before in the Orange's game against Virginia Tech.

"Somebody stepped on it," Howard said. "It's nothing that will stop me from playing. I just have to wrap it up. I don't have to do anything else with it," Howard said.

Howard's injury is something to keep an eye on, but he is expected to play on Sunday when the Orange travel to Chestnut Hill to take on Boston College.