Ever since the NCAA sanctions came down in March of 2015, the scholarship situation has always been an interesting discussion — mostly because not many can remember what’s going on year to year.
Without any sanctions, each D-I team is allowed 13 scholarship players per season. The Orange, however, are only allowed 11 next season but that number jumps to 12 in 2018-19. After that, Syracuse is back to the normal 13.
- Frank Howard, JR
- Paschal Chukwu, SO (RS)
- Tyus Battle, SO
- Matt Moyer, FR (RS)
- Taurean Thompson, SO
- Oshae Brissett, FR
- Bourama Sidibe, FR
- Howard Washington, FR
Earlier on Monday, Jon Rothstein of CBS Sports reported that Tyler Lydon will hire an agent and enter the 2017 NBA draft. Jim Boeheim didn’t refute that report during his 45 minute press conference on Monday afternoon, but did say that as of 1 p.m. ET Lydon had not hired an agent — meaning he could return to SU if he chose to.
But assuming that Rothstein’s report was correct, we take a look at next year’s roster for the Orange.
Guard: Frank Howard, Tyus Battle, Howard Washington
Forward/Center: Paschal Chukwu, Matt Moyer, Taurean Thompson. Oshae Brissett, Bourama Sidibe
Projected starting lineup:
G: Frank Howard
G: Tyus Battle
F: Matt Moyer
F: Taurean Thompson
C: Paschal Chukwu
Who else could Syracuse add to next year’s roster?
Jim Boeheim has now said twice that the Orange are still actively recruiting prospects for next season, and will likely add more to next year’s roster. As of right now, Syracuse can add up to three scholarship players — assuming no one else leaves.
Ayala is, who some believe, the most realistic option the Orange will add to their roster for next season. Although he’s still a 2018 prospect, Ayala can reclassify to the 2017 class anytime he chooses — and despite the commitment from Howard Washington, SU is still recruiting Ayala for next season.
Waters is an interesting situation based on the fact that he’s still currently signed with Georgetown. He requested his release from his letter of intent two weeks ago, and is still waiting to officially be released. The Orange can’t contact Waters until he is officially released.
Syracuse had been recruiting Duarte for a few months, but the contact is starting to decrease a bit, according to someone with knowledge of the situation. There had been the thought that Syracuse is concerned that Duarte may have NCAA Clearing House issues, which is believed to be the reason for backing off a bit. He remains an option, but no offer has been issued.
Brown is a new name added to the list that Syracuse could potentially add for next season. Brown is a 6-foot-4 guard at New Mexico State, but plans to graduate this season and transfer. He’ll be immediately eligible to play next season at a D-I school.
He went to high school at Mater Dei High School in California, the alma mater of former SU assistant Mike Hopkins. His father is Mike Brown, the former head coach of the Cleveland Cavaliers and Los Angeles Lakers.
The list will grow of players that Syracuse can potentially add, especially as more players announce their intent to transfer for a final year of eligibility.
I expect the Orange to continue to pursue 2017 prospects, but ultimately dip into the grad transfer market — similar to this past season with Andrew White and John Gillon.
The Orange definitely need to land another guard. Another scorer from the outside to accommodate Tyus Battle wouldn’t hurt either, but it’s also easier said than done.
Syracuse isn’t looking to add someone to provide depth for years to come. The Orange are looking to add someone who will contribute immediately and help this program return to the NCAA Tournament.