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Syracuse basketball: Previewing the new kids on the block

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I take an early look at ‘Cuse freshmen entering the 2020-2021 campaign. The start of the season is right around the corner.

Baylor v Syracuse Photo by Tom Pennington/Getty Images

With the Syracuse Orange men’s basketball season set to begin two weeks from now, we’ll be rolling out our preseason hoops coverage. Today we’ll take a look at the new kids on the block (AKA the freshmen).

Syracuse brings in four scholarship players in the class of 2020, some which will have an opportunity to carve out roles right away.

First things first, let’s start with Brooklyn’s finest, Kadary Richmond.

#3 Kadary Richmond

Position: Guard

Height: 6’5”

Weight: 180 LBS

Hometown: Brooklyn, NY

High School: South Shore/Brewster Academy

Richmond, who goes by the nickname “Kooks”, was ranked in the Top 100 recruit players in the Class of 2020 by ESPN. Coming from Brooklyn myself, if you watched high school basketball you knew about Kooks. I won’t forget the day I first heard about him during my sophomore year of high school. People told me he was the “real deal” and that has been proven right so far since he’s arrived in Syracuse. Coaches have been raving about his talents for the past two months. Basketball Hall of Famer and head coach Jim Boeheim had this to say about the freshman:

Via Matthew Gutierrez of the Athletic

Kooks brings a lot to the table. Other than his ability to ball handle, slash, and pass it is his versatility that stands out to me. Standing at 6’5 and having the ability to play forward and guard makes him a valuable option that of course will get him minutes immediately. I’m excited to see him find his rhythm on a new stage. I’ve seen him show out in local tournaments, but now it’s time to see what he will do here in the NCAA. For now, enjoy this video of him shutting down Gersh park after hitting a game winning 3-pointer at the buzzer.

#5 Frank Anselem

Position: Center

Height: 6’10”

Weight: 210 LBS

Hometown: Lagos, Nigeria

High School: Lincoln Academy/Prolific Prep

Originally from Nigeria, we have Frank Anselem. He adds length and size for the Orange inside which is a good change compared to last season. The Orange big can score the ball smoothly in the paint while also remaining active on the glass which is what you want from your big man. According to Cuse.com,

“Anselem was rated 23rd overall amongst centers in the 2020 class by 247Sports.com ... He was ranked among the top 100 prospects in the Class of 2021 before he re-classified to 2020 this past spring.”

#12 Chaz Owens

Position: Forward

Height: 6’5”

Weight: 200 LBS

Hometown: Blue Bell, Pennsylvania

High School: Wissahickon/Shipley School/Scotland Campus

Meet legacy player Chaz Owens, son of former Orange Billy Owens. He was picked up a little bit later than we would have wanted but he hasn’t found any problem with that. Sources told Matthew Gutierrez that he was seen defending “at a high level” in practice. Owens is a great rebounder who can attack the paint with authority. He also doesn’t need to score the ball to make an impact. It will be tough for the forward to find his way in the rotation but he can compete at the division I level.

#4 Woody Newton

Position: Forward

Height: 6’8”

Weight: 200 LBS

Hometown: District Heights, Maryland

High School: McKinley Tech/Mt. Zion Prep

Woody Newton, a four-star recruit out of Maryland, makes this team even deeper in depth. He’s an explosive forward who was approached by ‘Cuse during recruitment for the player he could become one day instead of the player he was at the time in high school. The young freshman isn’t a specialist at shooting but is capable of making shots from range when open. He also isn’t a liability on defense because he can hold his own, although I do think he can improve on this end.

#4 Shane Feldman

Position: Guard

Height: 6’2”

Weight: 160 LBS

Hometown: Agoura Hills, California

High School: Agoura

You have to do something really extraordinary to become a walk-on for any D1 basketball team. Feldman was able to do just that tracing back to the end of June. His older brother was also a walk-on here for the Orange. The confident guard will provide pretty much everything if his name called upon. He isn’t the best scorer, passer or rebounder but his game is sort of balanced in each of those aspects. Feldman has a knack at stealing the ball by interrupting passing lanes and this does not hurt Boeheim’s defensive scheme at all.

#10 Arthur Cordes

Position: Guard

Height: 6’3”

Weight: 185 LBS

Hometown: Wallingford, Connecticut

High School: Xavier/Sheehan

Cordes was yet another walk-on for Syracuse. The Connecticut native can really score the ball really well. He’s creative with the ball and know’s where to find the open space. Through watching him I can say he knows how to get his own spots on the floor with ease. He is also great at drawing charges.