In case you missed it, CBS put together a slideshow in which they ranked college basketball programs with the most NBA talent. Rankings were done solely through the lens of NBA bodies from former college programs.
In that scenario, the Syracuse Orange ranked seventh overall which is pretty darn good. No. 1 through No. 4 are who you might expect — Kentucky, Duke, Kansas and North Carolina in that order. Those are a bit obvious considering recent success and also that those four programs have the most wins on the hardwood in the history of college basketball (Syracuse is fifth all-time if you don’t exclude Boeheim’s revoked wins).
At No. 5 is UCLA which is somewhat surprising until you note the players listed while Arizona is just behind the Bruins at No. 6.
What can be debated is the difference of talent acquisition and talent development and the blend of those two things. Duke and Kentucky have reigned supreme on the recruiting front of late, but most of those prized recruits would go league irrespective of their college destination. That’s not to say those guys don’t develop, though.
Anyway, the list of Syracuse NBA guys includes Carmelo Anthony, Dion Waiters, Jerami Grant, Wes Johnson, Tyler Ennis, Malachi Richardson, Chris McCullough, Michael Carter-Williams and Tyler Lydon. It should be noted that those last two guys were just sent to down to the G-League and the Wizards elected not to pick up McCullough’s option. The Sacramento Kings did decide to pick up Malachi’s option, however.
There are a plethora of other Syracuse guys in the G-league this season as well including Andrew White, John Gillon, Michael Gbinije, James Southerland, CJ Fair and Tyler Roberson.