The Syracuse Orange basketball roster is set for 2019, but recruiting for 2020 and beyond is fast and fervent.
With a 5-man freshman class made up of Joe Girard III, Brycen Goodine, Jesse Edwards, Quincy Guerrier, and Jon Bol Ajak, Syracuse basketball already has a roster that goes 12-deep in scholarships. And with Woody Newton already committed for 2020, SU would seemingly be at the scholarship cap for next year as well.
But that doesn’t account for Elijah Hughes graduating, along with the possibility of early departures to the NBA or transfers. It’s likely that another spot or two will open up, which is why Syracuse basketball is still focused on prospects in the 2020 class.
Noah Collier (2020, F) - Up until recently, this was one of two main targets for Syracuse basketball in the 2020 class. However, Collier just cut his list to three, and Syracuse wasn’t on it.
Noah is ranked 160th by 247Sports, 95th by ESPN, and unranked on Rivals.
In 17 EYBL games, he averaged only 8.1 points per game and 4.8 rebounds per game, while shooting just 49 percent from the field and 54 percent from the line as a power forward. Certainly nothing spectacular, so I can understand why Syracuse is moving on.
Dave’s prediction: Probably Pittsburgh. Yuck.
Andre Jackson (2020, G/F) - Jackson is a very interesting recruit. He has off-the-charts athleticism, solid court vision, and the ability to play and cover multiple positions. He also can pull off plays like this:
and this (skip to around the 30 second mark for the actual play):
This didn't make it into the piece about Andre Jackson, but we aired it earlier today. Andre's Best/Worst dunk ever. We love @CoachFrusc describing this amazingly athletic feat. Video Credit: @janetmulvey pic.twitter.com/KRC7wvwrbp— Marisa Jacques (@MarisaJacquesTV) May 18, 2019
That’s Michael Carter-Williams level athleticism. Sign me up!
Currently, Andre Jackson is ranked 67th by 247Sports, 47th by ESPN, and 61st by Rivals. The biggest knock against him is his shooting touch. In 19 EYBL games this year (including six at Peach Jam), he’s only shooting 19 percent from 3-point range, and only 59 percent from the free throw line.
He has played better as the EYBL season progressed, including averaging 16.5 points per game and nine rebounds per game in six games at Peach Jam. He also shot over 80 percent from the line and 31 percent from 3 over that time, both dramatic improvements over his early season woes.
Right now, it’s a five-team race for Andre.
The Orange should have a bit of a lead due to Andre being from Albany and the Syracuse Orange being all over him for quite some time. UConn has been pressing hard for him as well.
I still feel fairly confident that we will land Andre.
Dave’s prediction: Syracuse-bound.
There are a few other 2020 recruits that Syracuse has offers out to, including: Isaiah Jackson, Cliff Omoruyi, Hunter Dickinson, Jamari Sibley, and Addison Patterson. However, it looks as if the Syracuse basketball coaches have backed off on them and will settle on a two-man class of Newton and Jackson, if they can land the latter.
Syracuse basketball recruiting for 2021 has a few more options. If we’re talking about who I’m most interested in seeing us land, it starts and ends with Terrence Clarke. I see Clarke as a generational type talent, someone who can single-handedly reshape any team’s chances.
Clarke is a straight up monster. Crazy athleticism. Unparalleled court vision. Very intelligent. Unselfish. Terrence has it all.
Unfortunately, he has offers from more than 30 schools, including Duke, Kentucky, Kansas, Louisville, and Villanova.
The only thing Syracuse basketball has going for it is that he attends Brewster Academy, the same school as CJ Fair, Buddy Boeheim, and Brendan Paul.
A guy can dream, can’t he?
Dave’s Prediction: Next Carmelo? Not likely. Duke or Kentucky bound.
Ok, now for the more realistic prospects in 2021.
John Camden (2021)
Camden was at Syracuse basketball’s elite camp in 2018, and also had an unofficial visit to SU in February. He was there when the team played Duke at the Carrier Dome, and reportedly had a very positive experience according to an article on 247Sports.
He’s 6-foot-6, tenacious, and a fantastic outside shooter.
I strongly believe that you can never have enough shooters in today’s game, so John is definitely a name to watch. He would be a great fit for the team, and the interest seems very mutual.
Dave’s prediction: Way too early, but why the heck not? ‘Cuse baby!
Let’s quickly run through a few more names.
Jonathan Kuminga (2021) - an incredibly talented, 6-foot-9 five star prospect. Likely out of Syracuse basketball’s grasp, but does have an offer from SU and plays for the New York Renaissance EYBL team.
Jai Smith (2021) - Stands 6-foot-9, played for Bishop Ludden and now the Albany City Rocks, has interest from SU, and has improved during each session at EYBL. Definitely a name to watch and a possible “under the radar” local option.
Franck Kepnang (2021) - Top 50, 6-foot-10 prospect. He plays for Westtown, the same school that sent us John Bol Ajak. He’s high energy and a great shot blocker. The next Rak?
JJ Starling (2022) - A local product out of Baldwinsville, Starling has massive potential as a projected 6-foot-6 or 6-foot-7 point guard. Only problem, his favorite college is apparently North Carolina. Gross.
Dior Johnson (2022) - Also plays for the Albany City Rocks, has an offer from Syracuse basketball, is ridiculously talented, and is being mentored by Lebron flipping James.
Chance Westry (2022) - A 6-foot-4 shooting guard out of Harrisburg, PA. He runs with Team Melo on the AAU circuit and was offered by Syracuse this summer along with Johnson.
Anyone I missed that you’re high on? Let me know in the comments!