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Syracuse basketball player previews: Walk-ons

Hard work really pays off.

NCAA Basketball: Duke at Syracuse Rich Barnes-USA TODAY Sports

It's that time of year again, as TNIAAM kicks off the 2017-2018 Syracuse Orange men's basketball team player previews. Coming off of what was a surprisingly difficult year, the Orange are looking to play the underdog role throughout this season.

Syracuse is coming into the season without three of their top four scorers from last year, which means a new face (or two) will have to step up this year. These next couple weeks are going to be filled with players who are being overlooked by the nation, so what better way to start than with the athletes who were doubted, but proved everyone wrong, from day one? The walk-ons.

Adrian Autry

Position: Guard

Height: 6'1"

Weight: 186 lbs.

Year: Junior

Hometown: Jamesville, N.Y.

High school: Jamesville-Dewitt

Autry, the quick guard for the Orange, appeared in 12 games last year with his most memorable moment being his season-high two rebounds against Boston College in the Carrier Dome. There's nothing like playing in front of thousands of fans, and this year Autry may be able to find some more time on the floor if his off season was full of improvement (or if our season is full of a necessity for it... gulp).

NCAA Basketball: St. Bonaventure at Syracuse
Assistant Coach Adrian Autry has had the privilege of coaching his son the past two years.
Rich Barnes-USA TODAY Sports

Patrick Herlihy

Position: Forward

Height: 6'6"

Weight: 205 lbs

Year: Senior

Hometown: Charleston, W.V.

High school: Charleston Catholic

One of the most memorable moments for any athlete is their senior game, and for a walk-on who doesn't see the floor that often, this game is going to be one to remember forever for Herlihy. This will be Herlihy's first season on the team, so playing time will be hard to find room for the forward out of West Virginia. Still, you’ll likely see him every so often.

Braedon Bayer

Position: Guard

Height: 6'4"

Weight: 190 lbs

Year: Junior

Hometown: Lagrangeville, N.Y.

High school: Trinity-Pawling School

Bayer made a name for himself as a freshman at Grinnell College where he played in all 25 games and started in three of them; he came to Syracuse for his sophomore year, but he sat out as a redshirt. The scoring guard will be looking to impact the team in the limited minutes he will receive, but a few good practice could lead to some important minutes for Bayer.

Shaun Belbey

Position: Guard

Height: 5'10"

Weight: 165 lbs

Year: Junior

Hometown: Brick, N.J.

High school: Christian Brothers Academy

Belbey had his most memorable moment as an Orangeman last year with his first career points against Boston University. Similar to Autry, Belbey played in 12 games last year, where he averaged 0.2 points and 0.2 assists per game.

NCAA Basketball: Boston U at Syracuse
Shaun Belbey will be looking for some more contact layups this year.
Rich Barnes-USA TODAY Sports

Ray Featherstone

Position: Guard

Height: 5'8"

Weight: 150 lbs

Year: Sophomore

Hometown: Westport, Conn

High school: Fairfield Prep/Choate Rosemary Hall

Featherstone had a year to remember last season as he made his collegiate debut against Holy Cross. His first career points came against South Carolina State when he drilled a three point shot — can you think of any better feeling?

Ky Feldman

Position: Guard

Height: 5'10"

Weight: 155 lbs

Year: Junior

Hometown: Agoura Hills, Ca.

High school: Agoura High School

Feldman has made a name for himself the last two years with his stylish headband. Feldman had a breakout game where he had a three pointer to go along with two rebounds. Probably one of the most impressive feats of his season was the fact that he played in four straight games. There may be limited opportunities for Feldman this year, but his support from the sidelines will never go unseen.