Howard Washington, Jr., a Class of 2017 point guard, remains extremely interested in Syracuse, as we’ve previously reported on TNIAAM.
Syracuse.com’s Donna Ditota caught up with Washington after one of his practice’s at Athlete Institute where he discussed his relationship with the coaching staff, his recruiting, interest in SU and what’s next.
“It’s just been my dream school since I was really young,” Washington told Ditota. “It’s kind of like a waiting game. Waiting for the perfect time to happen and then hopefully, it happens.”
Syracuse assistant coach Mike Hopkins has been in contact with Washington’s father for nearly three years now since his time at Canisius High School. It was then when the Orange started watching Howard and showing interest, but never offered a scholarship.
In 2015, Washington verbally committed to Butler, but decommitted shortly after due to insecurities at the time, he told Ditota.
“I pulled away from Butler because I don’t think I was ready to play at that stage, body-wise. So now I think I’m ready for ACC-level, or whatever high level, strength-wise, jumper-wise, quickness-wise,” he said.
“The game part, I thought I was good enough to play wherever. Mentally and IQ, I feel like I’m away ahead of guys. But guys my height are 200 pounds of pure muscle in college. I just wanted to take another year to get my body right and I feel like I’m right there.”
His head coach at Athlete Institute, Chris Cobbina, compares Washington to former SU guard Tyler Ennis.
"Tyler's a good comparison when it comes to that. Those guys aren't going to blow by you every time, but they change speeds really well, they're crafty, they get to spots," Cobbina told Ditota.
"I think Howard does a really good job of when he gets going with the jumper he can really shoot it. He's great off ball screens. He'll make the right read off the ball screen 8 or 9 times out of 10. If you want a point guard with the way the game is going - a lot of ball screens, pick and roll - you gotta have a guard that can step back and shoot it. You gotta have a guard who can make the right read. And he can definitely do that."
Syracuse hosted Class of 2018 guard Eric Ayala for its game on Monday vs. No. 8 Louisville. He holds a scholarship offer for either the 2017 or 2018 class, depending on which he decides to go with. The Orange is also after Class of 2017 four-star prospect Chris Duarte, but haven’t extended an offer his way yet either.
Oshae Brissett, a Class of 2017 SU signee, is teammates with Washington at Athlete Institute. He and 6-foot-11 center Bourama Sidibe remain SU’s only two Class of 2017 signees.