While Howard Washington wasn’t a key player for the Syracuse Orange men’s basketball team last year, the depth he was able to provide was at least helpful. When he was lost for the season with a knee injury, it left SU with just two guards — Tyus Battle and Frank Howard — who both averaged over 39 minutes per game the rest of the way.
SU doesn’t have the same depth concerns at guard this year, but Washington’s potential return could still become a factor for the Orange. Syracuse.com provided an update on his rehab status, and it seems like things are going well enough for him to consider competing for time this season. It’s debatable whether or not he’ll be needed as much given the fact that Elijah Hughes, Jalen Carey and Buddy Boeheim all arrive to reinforce things in the backcourt. Nonetheless, the extra body’s helpful and allows for more flexibility in terms of who redshirts for the Orange.
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“There was a 2-or-3 week stretch that it kind of sucked. I love working out, I love playing,” Washington said. “Basketball is something that keeps me sane. It’s just something I love to do. Coming into the gym and working out or shooting is just fun for me. Playing pickup with my friends is fun. So that was one of the biggest parts of my life that was taken out...”
13. Dino Babers, Syracuse: Babers has recorded back-to-back 4-8 seasons to begin his tenure in Syracuse, but the pieces are beginning to fall into place entering 2018. The Orange have pulled off a couple of big upsets (Virginia Tech in 2016 and Clemson in ‘17) and had close losses to Florida State, Miami, LSU and NC State last season. With three signing classes and the progression of the roster to fit his schemes, Babers has Syracuse poised to improve in 2018.
14. Dino Babers, Syracuse| Overall: 81 | Record: 26-31 (8-16 at Syracuse) | Lowdown: The victory against Clemson was a building block for the program, but it’s fair to ask for more after back-to-back 4-8 seasons that featured just four wins in the conference. This is a pivotal season for the Orange.
18 Breakout Players in the ACC for 2018 (247Sports)
Eric Dungey’s top target in 2017, Steve Ishmael, is now an Indianapolis Colt. That means there are a lot of targets up for grabs for the Syrcause wide receivers this fall. One of the players in line to get some of those is Devin Butler. After a decent sophomore year in which he had 327 receiving yards, Butler could have a much more productive year in 2018.
Syracuse – MetLife Stadium in East Rutherford, NJ: The Ben Schwartzwalder Trophy would be back on the table for this old rivalry. Syracuse currently leads the series 33-27 and has won the last three matchups, including a bowl win in 2012. The Mountaineers are also 0-2 against the Orange under Dana Holgorsen.
Ky Bowman will lead the ACC in scoring, usage rate in 2018-19 (ACCSports.com)